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Fourth Conference of the Parties 
to the Convention to 
Combat Desertification
Bonn, Germany; 11-22 December 2000

Highlights from Thursday, 21 December
The Committee of the Whole (COW) convened in a morning and afternoon session to consider a report by the Global Mechanism (GM), review its operational strategy and consider outstanding agenda items on rule 47 of the rules of procedure. The COW did not hear reports from the Chairs of the contact groups as they had not completed their work. The ad hoc working group on the review of CCD implementation (AHWG) met to hear the Co-Chairs' interim report. Plenary was briefly convened later in the afternoon, but did not consider the reports of the Committee on Science and Technology (CST), the AHWG and the Interparliamentary Roundtable held in parallel to the COP on 12-13 December, as expected due to lack of quorum.

Above photo:
The dias during the morning session of the COW chaired by Kabelo Mafura (Lesotho)

Committee of the Whole:


The Global Mechanism (GM) Managing Director Per Rydén (Left) presented documents ICCD/ COP(4)/4 and Add.2, as well as Add.1 (A) and Add.1(B) on the GM operational modalities, provision of guidance to it and opera­tional strategy. He highlighted some of the GM's activities in the development of action programmes, the finances it had secured, and innovative mechanisms used to channel resources. Rydén said the GM is developing a new paradigm in multilateral conventions' resource allocation and collaborating with the Global Environment Facility (GEF). He noted that additional resources were needed, including for additional staff, as the use of consultants is unsustainable.

NIGERIA, for the G-77/China, and supported by the Southern African Development Community, noted the GM's limitations to mobilize resources due to its mandate, dependence on COP for resources and limited US$1.3 million budget that could do little more than pay staff.


Co-Chair Willem van Cotthem (Left) introduced the Co-Chairs' interim report of the first session of the AHWG on the review of CCD implementation (ICCD/COP(4)/INFORMAL/2). He noted that it was a Co-Chairs' text and should not be negotiated. The report contains background information on the AHWG session and proceedings, and highlights best practices and successes, main obstacles and challenges, linkages and synergies with other conventions, and strategies established within the framework of sustainable development plans/policies, as identified in the reports presented.


, for the EU, supported measures to promote an exchange between stakeholders of the AHWG and maximum participation. CANADA, supported by NORWAY, underscored further integration of NGOs, especially women's organizations, and suggested that more information on participation and gender mainstreaming be included in future reports.


, supported by CANADA, the US and NORWAY, stressed that the session had been a learning exercise, and said the identification of best practices and common challenges had been of greatest benefit. He emphasized that time should be made available at the resumed session for an informal wrap-up after presentations, by clusters of countries.

UZBEKISTAN and MYANMAR expressed disappointment at the absence of the World Bank, UNDP and certain donor countries at the session, and called for more concrete suggestions for imple­mentation.


Left photo: Delegates discuss with one another as they wait for the plenary to start 




Plenary convened briefly at 6:45 p.m. COP-4 President Batjargal informed delegates that due to the limited quorum present, the reports of the CST, AHWG and the Parliamentarians round table would not be considered. He adjourned the meeting until Friday, 22 December, afternoon.

Right photo (L-R): CCD Executive Secretary, Hama Arba Diallo, COP-4 President, Zambiin Batjargal and representative from the Secretariat

ENB Summary of COP-3
ENB Coverage of COP-3
UNCCD Secretariat web site with COP-4 official documents and information for participants
Introduction to the CCD
Linkages desertification page
Other Internet Resources on Desertification

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