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The afternoon session of the Plenary opened with a statement by Nitin Desai, Under-Secretary-General for Policy Coordination and Sustainable Development. Desai pointed out that the ICPD is a bridge between the 1992 Earth Summit in Rio and the 1995 Social Summit to be held in Copenhagen and the Fourth World Conference on Women to be held in Beijing. While the Earth Summit focussed on the relationship between humanity and nature, the Social Summit will address issues of poverty, employment and social integration, and the Women's Conference will focus on the role and status of women. He summarized the role that population issues played in the UNCED process and highlighted various points in Chapter 5 of Agenda 21, the chapter on population issues. Desai commented that the Cairo Conference will allow the international community to continue a process of discussion that began with UNCED -- a process that focusses on people as the primary concern in development.

Dr. Sai, the Chair of PrepCom II, then updated the Plenary on the status of various informal consultations. With regard to the consultations on Agenda Item 5, Proposed Conceptual Framework, he said that there was a question of whether a separate report should be prepared by the Chairs of the informal consultations. He stated that since it is illogical to have separate reports from the informal consultations, he had decided to incorporate these reports into a Chair's summary that would be available later in the afternoon.

DRAFT PROVISIONAL RULES OF PROCEDURE FOR THE CONFERENCE: Vice-Chair Amb. Lionel Alexander Hurst from Antigua and Barbuda summarized the results of the consultations he had held on this document (E/CONF.84/PC/2/Rev.1). Hurst announced the acceptance of a draft rule that permits associate members of the Regional Commissions to participate in the PrepCom. Using language drawn from the UNCED rules of procedure, the draft rule allows such delegations to participate as observers without the right to vote. He went on to say that no agreement had been reached on the size and composition of the Conference Bureau. He said that he hoped this issue would be resolved before PrepCom III.

Colombia, on behalf of the G-77, requested to postpone action on this item, as the G-77 had planned to discuss the rules of procedure later in the afternoon. The Chair suspended further discussion until Friday.

DRAFT PROVISIONAL AGENDA FOR PREPCOM III: The Chair then opened discussion on document E/CONF.84/PC/L.6, the draft agenda for PrepCom III. Denmark, on behalf of the EC, commented that the work on the draft final document of the conference (Agenda Item 6) should be the main topic discussed at PrepCom III and that sufficient time should be allowed for this topic. Dr. Sadik agreed with this comment and stated that the Secretariat could arrange the organization of work to ensure that the draft final document will be the primary focus of PrepCom III. As there were no other comments, the draft agenda was adopted.

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