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The fourth Meeting of the Parties (MOP-4) to the Agreement on the Conservation of African-Eurasian Migratory Waterbirds

15-19 September 2008, in Antananarivo, Madagascar

Earth Negotiations Bulletin
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Landscape view from Angavokely forest, near Antananarivo.
Landscape view from Angavokely forest, near Antananarivo.

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Highlights for Friday, 19 September 2008

MOP-4 resumed in plenary today to address the outstanding items on the agenda, including cooperation with other bodies and processes, and developments of interest to the Agreement.

Delegates then adopted the draft resolutions. The approved budget for 2009-2012, contained in the resolution on financial and administrative matters, provides for a 15% increase and an increase of minimum annual contributions to 2000 euros. This budget allows for Secretariat staff consolidation and the maintenance of its activities, along with an increase in translation funds and funds for interpretation and travel support for meetings.

In the closing plenary, AEWA Executive Secretary Bert Lenten highlighted the African Initiative and commitment to higher annual contributions as successes. Harison Edmond Randriarimanana, Madagascar’s Minister of Environment, Forests and Tourism, commended delegates on their hard work, shared his views on the importance of migratory birds, and underscored Madgascar’s commitment to conservation. He concluded with the hope that AEWA “keeps flying, and keeps flying at its high altitude.”

Minister Randriarimanana declared MOP-4 closed shortly after 5:00 pm.

Nienke Beintema and Kate Neville, Earth Negotiations Bulletin, handed out the last daily issue of their Bulletin while delegates were waiting for the morning session to begin.

L-R: Bert Lenten, AEWA Executive Secretary; MOP-4 Chair Tovondriaka Rakotobe, Madagascar; Vice-Chair Abdoulaye N’Diaye, Senegal; Vice-Chair Olivier Biber, Switzerland; and Tim Jones, report writer

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Jérôme Mokoko Dit Ikonga, Republic of Congo, commented that only two Central African countries have ratified AEWA, and queried whether this would be a problem for regional representation on the Technical and Standing Committees. Patrice Blanchet, France, on behalf of the EU, stressed the need for synergies between initiatives under CMS and suggested that the AEWA Standing Committee keep Central Asian Flyway developments under review. Noual Mohamed Seghir, Algeria, commented on translation requirements for credentials, noting that the MOP-4 Credentials Committee included Syria and thus Arabic documents should not pose a problem.

Oliver Schall, Germany, expressed concern about the overlap between the MoU on African-Eurasian Raptors and Owls, the Central Asian Flyway Action Plan, and AEWA. Salim Javed, United Arab Emirates, underlined the need for the raptor MoU, and called for cooperation among initiatives. John Clorley, UK, pointed out that there should be no funding obligation for the signatories to the raptor MoU.

Conference helpers

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On the Central Asian Flyway, Anna Belousova, Russia, said Russia can generally not commit to Action Plans, only to Agreements or MoUs.

Ward Hagemeijer, Wetlands International, described Wetlands International's role in the interim coordinating mechanism on the Central Asian Flyway.

John H. Mshelbwala, Nigeria, presented the report of the Credentials Committee, which is chaired by Kenya.

Various impressions of Antananarivo.

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The ENB-Team, from right to left: Nienke Beintema; Kelly Levin; Kate Neville and Markus Staas. Executive Secretary Bert Lenten shaking hands with Harison Edmond Randriarimanana, Madagascar’s Minister of Environment, Forests and Tourism, who expressed hope that AEWA would "keep flying at its high altitude."

See you next time...

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15 September | 16 September | 17 September | 18 September | 19 September

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