Third Meeting of the Intergovernmental Committee for the Cartagena Protocol on Biosafety (ICCP-3)
The Hague, The Netherlands
22-26 April 2002

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Highlights for Monday 22 April 2002

At the opening Plenary of the third meeting of the Intergovern­mental Committee for the Cartagena Protocol on Biosafety (ICCP), delegates heard opening remarks, addressed organiza­tional matters, adopted the agenda and gave initial remarks on the meeting’s substantive agenda. In the afternoon, Working Group I (WG-I) discussed monitoring and reporting, and handling, trans­port, packaging and identification (HTPI) . Working Group II (WG-II) discussed liability and redress. Left photo: The dias during the ICCP-3 opening .

Opening Plenary:

ICCP Chair Amb. Philémon Yang (Cameroon) (left) highlighted the decision to convene a third meeting of the ICCP as a result of the non-entry into force of the Protocol in time to convene the first Meeting of the Parties (MOP).

Jan Pronk, Minister of Environment of the Netherlands, welcomed participants. He stressed the importance of ratifying the Protocol and other environmental agreements to enable the World Summit on Sustainable Development (WSSD) to focus on implementation.

Paul Chabeda, UNEP, highlighted UNEP’s inter-sessional biosafety-related activities, particularly the UNEP/Global Envi­ronment Facility (GEF) pilot capacity-building project for the preparation of the Protocol’s entry into force, and called for further replenishment of the GEF in order to support enabling projects for developing countries.

Hamdallah Zedan, CBD Executive Secretary, also urged CBD Parties to ratify the Protocol, preferably before the WSSD. He reviewed COP-6’s decisions focusing on biosafety issues and called for compliance with those decisions.

Plenary adopted the meeting’s agenda (UNEP/CBD/ICCP/3/1) and organization of work, and appointed François Pythoud (Switzerland) (above left) as Chair of WG-I and P.K. Ghosh (India) (above center) as Chair of WG-II. Antonietta Gutiérrez Rosati (Peru) (above right) will continue as rapporteur.

Spain, on behalf of the EU, noted progress in completing ratification of the Protocol and developing necessary national legislation, and encouraged constructive cooperation.

Latvia, on behalf of the CENTRAL AND EASTERN EUROPEAN COUNTRIES, assured to do the maximum for the Protocol’s success.

BRAZIL, on behalf of GRULAC, stressed capacity building, cooperation and the need to respect the stepwise approach regarding Article 18 (Handling, Transport, Packaging, and Identification).

The US emphasized formation of partnerships among developing and developed countries, the private sector and NGOs.

The NGO CAUCUS highlighted the controversy of maize contamination in Mexico, and called for establishing a retroactive compensation fund, an immediate ban on release of genetically modified organ­isms (GMOs) in centers of origin and/or diversity, and internation­ally standardized identifiers for living modified organisms (LMOs).
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