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The discussions on communication of information and review of implementation were based on document A/AC.241/39. The NGO network RIOD emphasized the importance of NGO participation and contribution to the whole process of communication of information. RIOD offered to prepare a list of NGOs worldwide with relevant expertise, which could be used by the Secretariat to serve on the Committees.

Objectives and criteria: Uzbekistan, supported by the Netherlands and Iran, noted that unlike in other environmental conventions, there is a distinction between affected and unaffected countries and this must affect information sharing. Canada, supported by the Netherlands and Spain, noted the need for standardization of communications and the importance of including analysis.

Communication from Parties: Kazakhstan suggested issuing a bulletin based on the communication.

Other review materials: The UK, supported by Germany, suggested the deletion of paragraph 13 because it is undesirable to evaluate activities of sovereign States. He applied the same argument to paragraph 14, on reviews by the CST. Israel, supported by Germany, suggested that the Parties themselves should provide summaries.

Guidelines for review materials: Benin suggested that the Secretariat should prepare a reporting manual for review by the Working Group and adoption at COP-1. He expressed concern for the developing countries who need hardware and software to be able to transfer quantitative data. On paragraph 21, indicators and financial flows, the UK suggested that the Secretariat should compile work on already devised indicators. Regarding the financial flows, the Secretariat could contact OECD, which has worked on identifying such flows.

Timing of communication: Regarding paragraph 23, Benin, supported by the UK, Portugal and China, suggested that reports should be presented every two or four years. On paragraph 24, rotation of communications, Benin, supported by the UK, Israel and Peru, noted that it is important to combine reporting from affected and non-affected countries. The UK suggested 20 reports as the limit for consideration at one meeting. Israel requested that the Secretariat prepare proposal formats for consideration at INCD-8.

Modalities of review: Benin, supported by Sudan and the Congo, suggested that review materials should be distributed six weeks before the session of the COP. The UK doubted whether the Permanent Secretariat should assist developing countries in obtaining funds from donors. This might be a role for the Global Mechanism.

Products of review: Benin suggested that the periodic report should be published every two years.

The Group adopted a draft decision on communication of information and review of implementation. The decision asks for the submission of further views on procedures for communication of information and review of implementation by 15 October 1995. The Secretariat should prepare a draft decision of the Conference of the Parties on this subject, based on document A/AC.241/39 and on comments and suggestions from INCD-7 for consideration at INCD-8. It was also decided that the Chair of INCD should send a letter to the Chair of the GEF inquiring if developing countries could get funding for communication of information.

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