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Benin, on behalf of the G-77 and China, expressed concern about the rumor that his Group has been the cause of the slow pace of work, and stated that they met as a Group on Wednesday to facilitate the speed of work at INCD-9.

RULES OF PROCEDURE: In Rule 32 (matters for consideration), the G-77 and China proposed retaining the bracketed text noting that the allocation of work could be adjusted upon the request of a Party or group of Parties and added “or a member of the Bureau of a subsidiary body.” The Russian Federation, the UK and the US supported deleting the bracketed text and objected to the G-77 and China’s addition. Austria suggested replacing the bracketed text with “upon the request of the Chair of a subsidiary body.” The G-77 and China changed Austria’s proposal to “upon the request of a subsidiary body,” which was agreed.

No substantive changes were made to Rule 33 (duties of the head of the Permanent Secretariat).

The heading of Rule 34 (functions of Secretariat) was changed to include the full name, “Permanent Secretariat.” Subparagraph (b) was changed so that the Secretariat should “collect” and not “receive” the documents of the session. The issue whether the meetings of subsidiary bodies should be held in private or public, under Rule 35 (meetings), paragraph 2, attracted lengthy debate. The G-77 and China supported “public” meetings, but the UK expressed concern that preparatory meetings then would be “open to the press and the man in the street.” Austria proposed a break for consultations, during which delegates agreed that meetings of subsidiary bodies should be public, unless the subsidiary body concerned decides otherwise. As part of the solution, a third paragraph was added, which reads: “Meetings of ad hoc subsidiary bodies shall be private unless the body decides otherwise.”

Rule 36 (quorum) was agreed as drafted. Delegates agreed to Canada’s proposal to change “his” to “the speaker’s” in Rule 37 (procedures for speaking). Rule 38 (precedence) was agreed as drafted.

ORGANIZATION OF SCIENTIFIC AND TECHNOLOGICAL COOPERATION: The Group went on to consider the organization of scientific and technological cooperation as contained in A/AC.241/57. In the Terms of Reference of the Committee on Science and Technology (CST), only three bracketed parts remained and the Group was able to solve them all. In the bracketed text in paragraph 2(ii) (advisory functions of the CST), the G-77 and China had in earlier negotiations expressed concern with “monitor” and the UK with “assess.” Upon the suggestion of the G-77 and China, the paragraph now reads “collect information, analyze, assess and report developments in science and technology....”

The discussion on paragraph 6 (composition of the Bureau of the CST) elicited debate between the UK and the G-77 and China regarding the paragraph’s link with Rules 22 and 31 (rules of procedure regarding the election of Bureau members of the COP and subsidiary bodies, respectively). It was finally agreed that there is no need to specify the number of Bureau members of the CST at the moment, thus the paragraph now reads: “The Committee shall elect its own Chairpersons, one of which shall act as Rapporteur. Together with the Chairperson, elected by the Conference of the Parties in accordance with rule 31 of the rules of procedure, they shall constitute the Bureau. The Chairperson and Vice-Chairpersons shall be elected with due regard to the need to ensure equitable geographical distribution and adequate representation of affected country Parties, particularly those in Africa, and shall not serve more than two consecutive terms.”

In paragraph 8 bis (follow up), France noted that the paragraph was proposed at INCD-8 in recognition of the fact that the bulk of the work would be done outside the sessions, and someone should be responsible for follow up. The G-77 and China proposed that the Bureau, rather than the Chairperson, be responsible for follow up. Additional proposals included the “Chairperson together with the Bureau” (Uzbekistan) and “through its Chairperson the Bureau” (France). But delegates agreed that the Bureau should be responsible for follow up.

Section Two, Procedures for the Establishment and Maintenance of a roster of Independent Experts, Part I (Draft Recommendation to the COP) was agreed.

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