Technical Assistance activities for the biennium 2007-2008
The programme of work for 2007-2008 was adopted by the third session of the Conference of the Parties in decision RC.3/3. The programme was developed in response to needs identified by Parties and builds on previously-undertaken technical assistance activities, in particular the development of national plans or strategies for the implementation of the Rotterdam Convention developed over the 2005–2006 biennium and the needs and priorities identified therein. The goal has been to develop activities that are tailored to the specific needs of individual countries or small groups of countries with a focus on those actions which are deemed necessary for Parties to implement fully the Convention.
The approach taken in delivering this programme of work marks a move away from regionally-based training to activities targeted at individual countries or small groups of countries relating to specific aspects of the Convention. It places a greater responsibility on Governments to define their technical assistance needs and to be proactive in seeking assistance to meet those needs.
National and Sub-Regional Meetings
This link provides all detailed information on the type of activities scheduled for 2007 and 2008.
Partners in the Regional Delivery of Technical Assistance
This link provides details on some of the specific regional partners with whom cooperation is foreseen in the biennium 2007-2008.
Types of National and Sub-Regional (2007 2008)
The meetings have been organized in the following categories:
1. Developing national plans or strategies for the implementation of the Convention
The secretariat has developed a curriculum for meetings at the national and subregional levels to assist Parties in developing national plans or strategies for the implementation of the Convention. These plans and strategies define what needs to be done, by whom and when. They also serve to identify priorities for action and are a basis on which countries can develop requests for specific technical assistance activities.
A total of 3 national meetings and 5 subregional meetings will be considered in 2007-2008.
The Parties eligible to participate in such national and subregional meetings are developing country Parties
that have yet to develop a national plan or strategy. For an up-to-date list of the meeting scheduled and availability of the associated reports click here
2. National follow-up seminars
A related activity is the convening of national seminars of one or two days in follow-up to subregional meetings. These seminars provide an opportunity to seek broader support for the national plans or strategies, to review their status of implementation and to give further consideration to country needs and priorities for action, in recognition of the fact that only a limited number of national representatives participate in the subregional meetings.
A total of 20 national follow-up seminars will be considered for 2007-2008. The countries eligible to participate in such seminars are those which participated in subregional meetings and which have requested such a national seminar. These seminars are organized by the designated national authority working with the representative of the regional office of the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO) with limited financial support from the secretariat.
Even though reporting back is not requested for this type of activity, few reports were produced. Please click here
to consult reports that have been made available by countries.
3. Thematic meetings on specific issues:Trade aspect of the Rotterdam Convention and SHPF
A total of three national and three subregional thematic meetings, involving a limited number of Parties, will be considered over the biennium.
The first type of thematic meetings will include two series of workshops focused on the trade aspects of the Convention: one for exporting countries and a second for exporting countries and their principal trade partners (for example, for five importing countries within the exporting country’s region or in different regions). These meetings could focus on those developing country Parties which are major manufacturers and exporters of chemicals.
The second type of thematic meetings will focus on severely hazardous pesticide formulations (SHPF). Such formulations continue to cause problems under the conditions of use in many countries. The European Union is funding a three year project (2005–2008) with the Pesticide Action Network to strengthen community health monitoring capabilities relevant to pesticide poisonings in selected African countries. Collaboration with this project, will continue with a view to establishing appropriate links between designated national authorities and community health monitoring activities in the pilot countries. For an up-to-date list of the thematic meetings scheduled and availability of the associated reports click here.
4. Fostering cooperation among designated national authorities (DNAs)
Subregional or regional meetings of designated national authorities (DNAs) will be considered for each of the seven PIC regions in 2007 and 2008. Sub-regional or regional meetings provide an opportunity for designated national authorities to meet to review progress in the implementation of the Convention, identify common problems and share experience in finding solutions. The specific issues for consideration at meetings in the different regions will vary. Bringing together DNAs in this way serves to strengthen regional cooperation and support among Parties in the implementation of the Convention.
This strengthened cooperation would help define country needs, identify opportunities for collaboration with other related activities at the national and subregional levels and facilitate follow-up with countries. Consistent with the Party to Party assistance envisaged in the Convention, each meeting of DNAs includes some Parties who are successfully meeting their Convention obligations and others who are less successful.
To facilitate constructive discussion, participation is limited to around 30 participants. In order to accommodate the size of some of the regions and the various language profiles of the regions, some 10 meetings will be considered in 2007–2008. For an up-to-date list of the DNA meetings scheduled and availability of the associated reports click here.
5. Working directly with individual countries on specific issues
The range of issues for which assistance may be requested by a Party varies widely and the way in which these different issues might be addressed depends on the issue itself and the countries involved. In some instances, a national or subregional meeting may not be an effective way to respond to an identified need. In such cases, a more efficient means of assistance might include having a regional expert or international consultant work directly with the designated national authority in a country; alternatively, it may be possible to address the issue through integration with activities under way in the country or at the regional level through bilateral aid projects, work on related multilateral environmental agreements such as the Basel Convention or the Stockholm Convention on Persistent Organic Pollutants or the work of other regional or subregional organizations. In addition the secretariat could facilitate contact between Parties requesting assistance and the bilateral or multilateral aid programmes or organizations which might be able to provide such assistance.
 Reference to developing country Parties is intended also to include Parties which are countries with economies in transition.
Partners in the regional delivery of technical assistance (2007 - 2008)
On an ongoing basis the secretariat looks for opportunities to initiate and strengthen cooperation with regional and subregional organizations involved in chemicals management activities. Cooperation with the Basel Convention regional centres will continue in 2007-2008. Some of the specific regional partners with whom cooperation is foreseen in the biennium include the following.
1. Regional offices of FAO and UNEP
Annual meetings with representatives of FAO and UNEP regional offices will be considered in 2007-2008. Such meetings provide an opportunity to obtain feedback on experience with the delivery of technical assistance activities in the regions and will provide valuable input to planning activities during the biennium and in developing further ideas for meeting the technical assistance needs of countries in preparation for fourth meeting of the Conference of the Parties (October 2008). For the meeting schedule and availability of the associated reports click here.
2. Group of regional experts
An informal group regional experts was created in 2005 to work with the secretariat in the delivery of the national and subregional meetings on the implementation of the Convention. This group is seen as a means of promoting cooperation among Parties within and between subregions. Annual meetings of this group are proposed in order to follow up on the experience gained in 2006 and 2007, to provide an opportunity to include new experts in the group and to expand the range of expertise available within the group. For the meeting schedule and availability of the associated reports click here.
3. Sahelian Pesticides Committee (CSP)
In order to strengthen the link between the work of CSP and the designated national authorities in the member countries of CSP, participation of those authorities in two scheduled meetings of CSP in 2007 and 2008 are planned. The goal of this activity is to explore further how the work of CSP might assist member countries in meeting their obligations under the Rotterdam Convention. Individual visits to the designated national authorities in the member countries of CSP that are Parties to the Convention are also planned in order to assist in follow-up, in particular with regard to submitting notifications of final regulatory action and decisions of future imports of chemicals listed in Annex III to the Convention. In 2007 individual country visits were undertaken in Cap Verde, Mali, Mauritania and Senegal. Similar visits are planned for 2008 in Gambia, Chad, Burkina Faso and Niger.
For the meeting schedule and availability of the associated reports click here.
4. Asia Pacific Plant Protection Commission (APPPC)
The APPPC meets every two years with the next session scheduled for September 2007. The secretariat has arranged for the participation in the meeting of regional experts or a limited number of designated national authorities from representative member countries in order to promote the inclusion of the Rotterdam Convention in the APPPC work programme. For the meeting schedule and availability of the associated report click here.