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COP 5 Decision V/20
Retired sections: paragraphs 4, 6, 10-17, 23, 27-28, 29 (b) and (e), 30-33 and 37-40.

Operations of the Convention

The Conference of the Parties,

I. THE CONFERENCE OF THE PARTIES

1. Decides to amend rule 4 of its rules of procedure by replacing paragraph 1 with the following paragraph:

"1. Ordinary meetings of the Conference of the Parties shall be held every two years. The Conference of the Parties shall from time to time review the periodicity of its ordinary meetings in the light of the progress achieved in the implementation of the Convention."

2. Decides that its provisional agenda should include the following standing items:

(a) Organizational matters; (b) Reports from subsidiary bodies, the financial mechanism and the Executive Secretary; (c) Review of the implementation of the programme of work; (d) Priority issues for review and guidance; and (e) Other matters;

3. Decides that, to the extent possible, its decisions should identify expected outcomes, activities to achieve those outcomes, those to whom the decisions are directed and timetables for action and follow-up;

4. Decides to review its previous decisions periodically in order to assess their status of implementation;

5. Decides to amend its rules of procedure:

(a) By replacing the first two sentences of paragraph 1 of rule 21 with the following sentences:

"At the commencement of the first session of each ordinary meeting a President and ten Vice-Presidents, one of whom shall act as Rapporteur, are to be elected from among the representatives of the Parties. They shall serve as the bureau of the Conference of the Parties. The term of office of the President shall commence straight away and the terms of office of the Vice-Presidents shall commence upon the closure of the meeting at which they are elected."; and (b) By replacing the first two sentences of paragraph 2 of rule 21 with the following sentences: "The President shall remain in office until a new President is elected at the commencement of the next ordinary meeting and the Vice-Presidents shall remain in office until the closure of the next ordinary meeting. They shall serve as the bureau of any extraordinary meeting held during their term of office and provide guidance to the Secretariat with regard to preparations for, and conduct of, meetings of the Conference of the Parties."; and (c) By replacing the words "a President for the meeting" in rule 25 with "a new President";

6. Decides to review the effectiveness of the changes referred to in paragraph 5 of the present decision, in the light of experience, at its seventh meeting;

7. Decides to revise its procedures for decision-making regarding administrative and financial matters with a view to ensuring:

(a) Transparency; (b) Participation; and (c) Full consideration of its other decisions;

8. Decides that guidance to the financial mechanism should be incorporated into a single decision, including the identification of priority issues which will provide support for cross-cutting issues and capacity-building, especially for developing countries, in a manner that:

(a) Is transparent; (b) Allows participation; and (c) Allows full consideration of its other decisions;

9. Requests the Executive Secretary to limit the number of pre-session documents for any of its meetings, to keep them as short as feasible, if possible less than 15 pages, and to include an executive summary in each;

II. STRATEGIC PLAN FOR THE CONVENTION

10. Decides to prepare and develop a Strategic Plan for the Convention, with a view to considering and adopting the Strategic Plan at its sixth meeting;

11. Decides that the Strategic Plan shall be based on the longer-term programmes of work of the Conference of the Parties and of the Subsidiary Body on Scientific, Technical and Technological Advice, and that the Strategic Plan shall provide strategic and operational guidance for the implementation of these programmes of work;

12. Decides that the Strategic Plan will initially cover the period 2002-2010;

13. Decides that the Strategic Plan shall contain a set of operational goals that the Conference of the Parties has decided that it wishes to be achieved in the period covered by the Strategic Plan, and that these operational goals shall relate to the following three main areas of work:

(a) The thematic programmes; (b) Cross-cutting issues and initiatives; and (c) The implementation of the provisions of the Convention;

14. Decides that these operational goals shall reflect levels of elaboration, progress of development, stages of implementation, state of knowledge and capacities, and degrees of cooperation, with respect to the three main areas of work;

15. Decides that within each of these goals, the Strategic Plan shall identify, as far as possible, the following parameters:

(a) Planned activities; (b) The expected products; (c) The timing of each of these activities and products; (d) The actors carrying out these activities and cooperation with relevant organizations; (e) The mechanisms used to realize and/or support the goals and activities, or to generate the expected products; and (f) Financial, human-resource and other capacity requirements;

16. Requests the Executive Secretary to develop the Strategic Plan, in accordance with the above parameters, and including options where appropriate, and to engage in a participatory process that ensures:

(a) Incorporation of the views of Parties and the Bureau of the Conference of the Parties; (b) Consideration by the Subsidiary Body on Scientific, Technical and Technological Advice and its Bureau, and other relevant subsidiary bodies of the Convention on matters relevant to their mandates; and (c) Input from other interested countries and organizations; with a view to preparing a full draft Strategic Plan in time for consideration and adoption by the Conference of the Parties at its sixth meeting;

III. OPERATIONS OF THE SUBSIDIARY BODY ON SCIENTIFIC, TECHNICAL AND TECHNOLOGICAL ADVICE

17. Decides that meetings of the Subsidiary Body on Scientific Technical and Technological Advice should take place every year;

18. Decides that the Chair of the Subsidiary Body on Scientific, Technical and Technological Advice or other members of the Bureau authorized by him or her may represent the Subsidiary Body at meetings of the scientific bodies of other conventions and relevant biological-diversity-related conventions, institutions and processes;

19. Encourages the Bureau of the Subsidiary Body on Scientific, Technical and Technological Advice to hold meetings with equivalent bodies of other relevant biological-diversity-related conventions, institutions and processes;

20. Recognizes that in certain cases it will be appropriate for the Subsidiary Body on Scientific, Technical and Technological Advice to make recommendations that include options or alternatives;

21. Decides that the Subsidiary Body on Scientific, Technical and Technological Advice may establish ad hoc technical expert groups and adopt terms of reference for them, and shall seek ways to ensure transparency in the choice of experts and the rationalization of meetings, and decides to give effect to this by amending paragraph 12 (c) of the modus operandi of the Subsidiary Body (decision IV/16, annex I) to read: "(c) Within the available budgetary resources, the Subsidiary Body on Scientific, Technical and Technological Advice will determine the exact duration and specific terms of reference when establishing such expert groups under the guidance of the Conference of the Parties;"

22. Confirms that the Subsidiary Body on Scientific, Technical and Technological Advice, within the available budgetary resources for matters related to its mandate, may make requests to the Executive Secretary and utilize the clearing-house mechanism, and other appropriate means, to assist in the preparation of its meetings;

23. Decides to make an assessment at its sixth meeting of the recommendations made to it by the Subsidiary Body on Scientific, Technical and Technological Advice with a view to providing guidance to the Subsidiary Body on ways to improve its inputs;

24. Decides that the guidance to the Subsidiary Body on Scientific, Technical and Technological Advice contained in specific decisions of a meeting of the Conference of the Parties should take into account the need for a coherent and realistic programme of work for the Subsidiary Body, including the identification of priority issues, allowing flexibility in timing, and agrees that the Subsidiary Body on Scientific, Technical and Technological Advice may, if necessary, adjust the timing of its consideration of issues;

25. Recognizes that there is a need to improve the quality of the scientific, technical and technological advice provided to the Conference of the Parties, and to undertake sound scientific and technical assessments, including in-depth assessments of the state of knowledge on issues critical for the implementation of the Convention;

26. Requests the Subsidiary Body on Scientific, Technical and Technological Advice to continue to improve the way it conducts its scientific, technical and technological work in order to improve the quality of its advice to the Conference of the Parties;

27. Decides that, in its scientific, technical and technological work and, in particular, scientific assessments, the Convention should make use of existing programmes and activities of the Convention or of other bodies and of expertise made available by Parties;

28. Notes the report of the brainstorming meeting on scientific assessment (UNEP/CBD/COP/5/INF/1), and refers it to the Subsidiary Body on Scientific, Technical and Technological Advice for consideration and, where appropriate, use in its work;

29. Requests the Subsidiary Body on Scientific, Technical and Technological Advice:

(a) To identify and, where needed, further develop, procedures and methods to undertake or participate in scientific assessments, or make use of existing ones, taking into account considerations of participation, effectiveness and costs;

(b) To undertake a limited number of pilot scientific assessment projects, in preparation for the sixth meeting of the Conference of the Parties, and to invite, among others, the Millennium Ecosystem Assessment to work closely together with the Subsidiary Body in this area; and to facilitate and support the implementation of these projects; and, at an appropriate stage, to carry out an evaluation of them;

(c) To develop further its methodologies for scientific assessment, and to provide advice to Parties on scientific assessment design and implementation;

(d) To identify and regularly update, within the context of its programme of work, assessment priorities and information needs;

(e) To review the implementation of decision II/1 relating to the Global Biodiversity Outlook and provide the results of that review to the Conference of the Parties at its sixth meeting, together with advice on means to enhance implementation and/or any desirable amendments to the decision;

30. Notes the proposed uniform methodology for the use of the roster of experts, set out in annex I to recommendation V/14 of the Subsidiary Body on Scientific, Technical and Technological Advice, and refers this to the Subsidiary Body and the Executive Secretary for consideration and, where appropriate, use in their work;

31. Encourages Parties, other Governments and relevant bodies when nominating their experts for inclusion in the roster to consider:

(a) Gender balance; (b) Involvement of indigenous people and members of local communities; (c) Range of relevant disciplines and expertise, including, inter alia, biological, legal, social and economic sciences, and traditional knowledge;

IV. OTHER MATTERS

32. Decides that every effort should be made to promote the development of the clearing-house mechanism with respect to its role in facilitating the transfer of technology and know-how through exchanging and disseminating information, and in enhancing capacity-building, especially at the national level, taking into account the review of the mechanism;

33. Recognizes that activities at the subregional and regional levels, including existing regional processes established for other biological-diversity-related purposes, have an important role to play in preparing for Convention meetings and enhancing implementation of the Convention, and calls on Parties to participate actively in suitable subregional and regional activities, as well as on the Executive Secretary, subject to necessary voluntary contributions, to facilitate the involvement in such subregional and regional activities of developing country Parties, in particular the least developed and small island developing States, and other Parties with economies in transition;

34. Requests the Executive Secretary to continue enhancing communication with the Parties through the notification system for the Convention with respect to inter-sessional activities, documents received, selection of experts for technical panels, peer-review processes initiated by the Executive Secretary, and liaison groups and other expert bodies, and to make such information available through the clearing-house mechanism save to the extent that an expert objects to the release of information concerning him or her;

35. Decides to improve the functioning of the existing operational procedures for the conduct of meetings under the Convention, particularly to allow small delegations to participate more effectively, including in relation to the scheduling of agenda items and dealing with timetable changes;

36. Calls on the Executive Secretary to use national reports, as appropriate, to gather focused information as part of the preparatory process for issues in the work programme, and decides to reflect this approach in its decisions on national reports arising from work agreed to in decision IV/14, on national reports by Parties;

V. IMPLEMENTATION

37. Decides that it is necessary to enhance the review and facilitation of implementation of the Convention;

38. Decides to hold an open-ended inter-sessional meeting, to assist with preparations for the sixth meeting of the Conference of the Parties. The meeting will be of three days duration and is to be held in conjunction with an existing meeting. The meeting will consider, and to the extent possible develop draft elements of decisions on, the following topics:

(a) Preparation of the Strategic Plan for the Convention; (b) The second national reports; and. (c) Means to support implementation of the Convention, in particular, implementation of priority actions in national biodiversity strategies and action plans;

39. Decides to review at its sixth meeting, in the light of this experience, the role of inter-sessional processes in enhancing implementation of the Convention;

40. Decides to enhance further the functions of subregional and regional processes in preparing for meetings under the Convention and in promoting the implementation of the Convention at the regional, subregional and national levels;

41. Requests the Executive Secretary to provide an overview of existing mechanisms and processes for review of national implementation of environmental instruments, and invites Parties to undertake, on a voluntary basis, a review of national programmes and needs related to the implementation of the Convention and, if appropriate, to inform the Executive Secretary accordingly

  • United Nations
  • United Nations Environment Programme