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24 July 1996
SUBSIDIARY BODY ON SCIENTIFIC, TECHNICAL AND
Montreal, 2 to 6 September 1996
OF THE SUBSIDIARY BODY ON SCIENTIFIC, TECHNICAL
AND TECHNOLOGICAL ADVICE
Note by the Secretariat
1. Article 25 of the Convention on Biological Diversity
establishes the Subsidiary Body on Scientific, Technical and Technological
Advice (SBSTTA) to provide the Conference of the Parties (COP) and, as
appropriate, its other subsidiary bodies with timely advice relating to
the implementation of the Convention. Paragraph 2 of Article 25 of the
Convention provides that "under the authority of and in accordance
with guidelines laid down by the Conference of the Parties, and upon its
request, this body shall:
(a) Provide scientific and technical assessments of the
status of biological diversity;
(b) Provide scientific and technical assessments of the
effects of types of measures taken in accordance with the provisions of
(c) Identify innovative, efficient and state-of-the-art
technologies and know-how relating to the conservation and sustainable
use of biological diversity and advise on the ways and means of promoting
development and/or transferring such technologies;
(d) Provide advice on scientific programmes and international
cooperation in research and development related to conservation and sustainable
use of biological diversity;
(e) Respond to scientific, technical, technological and
methodological questions that the Conference of the Parties and its subsidiary
bodies may put to the body."
2. At its first meeting, held in Nassau, The Bahamas,
from 28 November to 9 December 1994, the Conference of the Parties decided
that the SBSTTA shall consider at its first ordinary meeting its modus
operandi, taking fully into account all views expressed on this matter
at the first meeting of the Conference of the Parties and submitted to
the Secretariat in writing by the end of February 1995, as well as the
need to draw on relevant institutional structures.
3. The first meeting of SBSTTA had before it a note from
the Secretariat, document UNEP/CBD/SBSTTA/1/2, which took into account
the views of the first meeting of the Conference of the Parties, the views
submitted in writing to the Secretariat, and the experience of other relevant
institutions. The views expressed by governments during the meetings of
the Intergovernmental Committee on the Convention on Biological Diversity
held in Geneva, Switzerland (11 - 15 October 1993), in Nairobi, Kenya (20 June
to 1 July 1994), and of the Open-ended Intergovernmental Meeting of Scientific
Experts on Biological Diversity held in Mexico City, Mexico (11 - 15 April
1994), were also considered. Written contributions received by the Secretariat
were contained in document UNEP/CBD/SBSTTA/1/Inf.1. On the basis of these
views and those expressed at the meeting, the SBSTTA adopted recommendation
I/1 on the modus operandi of the SBSTTA.
4. The second meeting of the COP endorsed this modus
operandi of the SBSTTA in decision I/1. Paragraph 3 of decision I/1
also requested that the SBSTTA keep under review its modus operandi
with a view to improving its functioning on the basis of experience gained.
5. Accordingly, the Executive Secretary requested submissions
on the modus operandi of the SBSTTA in a letter sent out on 30 November
6. At its meeting on 3 and 4 May 1996, the Bureau of the
SBSTTA suggested that the SBSTTA may wish to consider reviewing its modus
operandi in light of the experience of the previous year.
7. The purpose of this note is to assist the second meeting
of the SBSTTA in reviewing its modus operandi. The suggested changes
are based upon comments received by the Secretariat on the existing modus
operandi, which are based upon the experience gained so far in the
operation of the SBSTTA. The note presents the suggestions in the order
that they are relevant to the provisions of the modus operandi.
II. RULES OF PROCEDURE
8. Article 23, paragraph 3, of the Convention provides
that the Conference of the Parties shall by consensus agree upon and adopt
rules of procedure for itself and for any subsidiary body it may establish.
At its first meeting, the Conference of the Parties adopted its rules of
procedure as contained in the annex of its decision I/1. Rule 26, paragraph
5, of the rules of procedure of the Conference of the Parties provides
that unless otherwise decided by the Conference of the Parties, the rules
of procedure of the Conference of the Parties shall apply mutatis mutandis
to the proceedings of subsidiary bodies established under the Convention.
It also provides that should the SBSTTA consider it beneficial to change
some of those rules, it may suggest any appropriate changes to the Conference
of the Parties.
9. Rule 21 of the rules of procedure provides that the
term of office for the members of the Bureau is from their election until
their successors are elected at the following meeting. As the election
of officers is normally one of the first orders of business at any meeting,
this means that the Bureau that undertook the preparatory work for the
meeting is not the same Bureau present at the meeting. Rather the Bureau
is composed of members who where only elected at the beginning of the meeting.
Such an arrangement has meant that the experience of the members of the
Bureau has not been fully utilised. In order to fully utilise the experience
of the Bureau and to thereby facilitate the efficiency of the meetings
of the SBSTTA, the SBSTTA may wish to consider delaying the election of
officers until the end of its agenda or, alternatively, recommending to
the COP that term of office of the members of the Bureau be altered so
as to run from the end of the meeting at which they were elected to the
end of the following meeting.
10. The note prepared by the Secretariat for the first
meeting of the SBSTTA on the modus operandi (document UNEP/CBD/SBSTTA/1/2)
observed that "taking into account the technical and scientific character
of the input required from the SBSTTA, the members of the SBSTTA Bureau
could be elected for a duration of two years." Such a suggestion was
also made in the preparatory process of the first meeting of the COP in
order to enhance the continuity of the work and to ensure better use of
the institutional memory that members of the Bureau attain during their
term in office. The experience of the members of the Bureau over the last
year has illustrated and emphasised the value of this institutional memory
in efficiently conducting the work of the Bureau. Consequently, the SBSTTA
may wish to reconsider the length of the term of office for the members
of the Bureau.
11. Additionally, and in order to ensure greater institutional
continuity and better use of the institutional memory of the Bureau, the
SBSTTA may also wish to consider staggering the terms of office for the
members of the Bureau.
III. FREQUENCY AND TIMING OF THE SBSTTA
12. The first meeting of the Conference of the Parties
decided that the SBSTTA shall meet "sufficiently in advance of each
meeting of the Conference of the Parties to enable its report to be considered
by Parties in their preparation for the meeting of the Conference of the
Parties. Pursuant to the decisions of the first Conference of the Parties
regarding the convening of its organs, a time-frame of at least two months
is required between any meeting of the SBSTTA and the convening of an ordinary
meeting of the Conference of the Parties" (see paragraph 1 (c) of
its decision I/7).
13. The modus operandi of the SBSTTA also provides,
in paragraph 6, that the SBSTTA "shall meet annually and sufficiently
in advance of each regular meeting of the Conference of the Parties".
14. The first meeting of the SBSTTA was held from 4-8
September 1995. The following meeting of the COP was held from 6-17 November
1995. This meeting was proceeded by the following regional meetings: the
African Regional Meeting, which was held from 9 to 10 October 1995; the
Latin American and Caribbean Regional Meeting, which was held from 18 to
19 October 1995; and the Asian Regional Meeting, which was held from 4
to 5 November 1995.
15. This meeting of the SBSTTA is to be held from 2-6
September 1996, and is to be followed by the third meeting of the COP from
3-17 November 1996. The third meeting of the COP is also to be proceeded
by various regional meetings and, even though the dates are yet to be finalised
for these meetings, it is likely that the timing for these meetings will
be similar to the previous year.
16. The schedule for the meetings of the Convention means
that for many Parties there is not enough time to properly consider the
results of the SBSTTA meeting by way of preparation for the COP processes.
For example, the period between the SBSTTA meeting and the regional preparatory
meetings for the COP mean that for many Parties it is difficult to undertake
full and proper consultations within the relevant ministry let alone wider
consultations with other ministries and the public. Such problems limit
the extent to which the report of the SBSTTA and the advice it contains
can be properly incorporated into the work of the Convention.
17. Accordingly, the SBSTTA may wish to recommend holding
future meetings of the SBSTTA earlier in the year so as to allow more time
for the recommendations of the meeting to be considered. It has been suggested
in the contributions to the Secretariat on this matter that the SBSTTA
may wish to consider setting a date in July, 1997 for the next meeting
of the SBSTTA by way of trial for the overall review of the SBSTTA to be
conducted at the following meeting of the COP in November 1997.
18. The modus operandi of the SBSTTA also provides,
in paragraph 6, that the duration of the meeting of the SBSTTA is to be
"determined by the Conference of the Parties". The first meeting
of the COP in 1994 determined that annual meetings of five days' duration
are appropriate for the SBSTTA.
19. The SBSTTA may wish to consider the duration of its
meetings. In light of its heavy workload, the contributions that the Secretariat
received on the matter and the experience of the first meeting of the SBSTTA
-- in particular, the difficulty that this meeting experienced in fully
considering all items on the agenda -- the SBSTTA may wish to consider
recommending to the COP that the duration and/or the frequency of the meetings
of the SBSTTA be altered.
20. The modus operandi provides, in paragraph 7,
that the documentation for the meetings of SBSTTA will be concrete, focused,
draft technical reports and will include proposed conclusions and recommendations
for consideration by the SBSTTA. In order to facilitate the proposal of
recommendations that are useful, practical and concrete, the SBSTTA may
wish to consider developing a list of options as to the type of recommendations
that these reports should call for.
V. ORGANISATION OF WORK
Thematic approach for meetings of the SBSTTA and the
21. The terms of reference of the SBSTTA are contained
in paragraph 2 of Article 25 of the Convention. The medium-term programme
of work is, however, largely determined by the programme of work of the
COP. The enormous breadth of the programme, as has been previously noted,
means that developing specific and concrete advice on all the issues is
not possible. Accordingly, the first meeting of the SBSTTA focused its
attention on the consideration of item 5.5.3 of the agenda and the provision
of advice on the scientific, technical and technological aspects of the
conservation and sustainable use of coastal and marine biological diversity.
The contributions that the Secretariat received widely acknowledged that
such an approach allowed the first meeting of the SBSTTA to develop more
particular and useful advice. In light of this experience, the SBSTTA may
wish to consider adopting a thematic approach for future meetings of the
SBSTTA. Accordingly, the SBSTTA may wish to also consider the establishment
of some mechanism to assist the COP in determining which themes future
meetings of the COP and, in turn, the SBSTTA, may consider.
Informal working groups: rosters of experts and liaison
22. Taking into account the amount and complexity of items
on its agenda, the SBSTTA may wish to further consider the organization
of its work during the meetings. Paragraph 8 of the modus operandi
allows for the establishment of two open-ended sessional working groups
of the SBSTTA to operate simultaneously during meetings of the SBSTTA.
The first meeting of the SBSTTA relied upon the establishment of two such
working groups to consider all the items on the agenda. Two working groups
have been recommended for the second meeting of the SBSTTA. The crucial
role that these working groups have played in facilitating effective decision-making
points to the value of considering other types of open-ended informal contact
groups and/or formal working group(s) or committee(s) that could contribute
to the work of the SBSTTA. The establishment of open-ended informal contact
groups would allow the SBSTTA to adjust, in a flexible manner, the organization
of its work to the needs and requirements of each of its meetings.
23. The decisions of the second meeting of the COP also
recognised the importance of intercessional work by the SBSTTA. This is
manifest in calls for the establishment of a roster of experts and the
liaison groups. Moreover, the Secretariat received a number of contributions
calling for more informal intercessional work based on the greater use
of liaison groups and rosters.
24. Furthermore, the experience of the SBSTTA so far has
emphasised a clear need for more intercessional activities. The benefits
from increasing the intercessional activities include: (a) being able to
advise the meetings of the COP in a more contemporaneous interactive fashion;
(b) being able to better support the work of the Secretariat; (c) an ability
to support the work of the Convention as whole; (d) assisting Parties to
prepare national reports and the Secretariat to synthesis such reports;
and (e) better preparation for the meetings of the SBSTTA, which would
in turn increase the efficiency of such meetings.
25. There has been widespread support for the greater
use of establishing expert working groups drawn from a roster of experts.
This mechanism was adopted by the COP to assist the Executive Secretary
in developing a medium-term programme of work for the conservation and
sustainable use of marine and coastal biological diversity. Compiling country-determined
rosters has proven to be a lengthy process, delaying implementation of
the programme of work. An intermediate alternative, which could expedite
the process of constituting rosters, might be to rely upon the use of existing
panels that have relevant expertise. Such an intermediate mechanism would
also encourage both cooperation with these other panels and, in turn, processes,
as required by decision II/13 of the COP. In light of paragraph 11 of the
modus operandi, the list of panels should not be restricted to governmental
panels but should also include panels of intergovernmental organisations
and non-governmental organisations. The Bureau of the SBSTTA could play
a supervisory and coordinating role over these teams by selecting lead
authors and developing broad mandates for the programme of work envisaged
to be appropriate for the team. Such an arrangement would help focus the
efforts of the SBSTTA in the development of specific recommendations and
advice and would enable it to draw on a wide body of expertise.
26. Once the rosters are compiled there is no prescribed
procedure for selecting small groups of experts. Selection could be guided
by applying the provisions of the modus operandi mutatis mutandis.
However, this leaves much to be determined. There are numerous other relevant
examples which could be examined to develop a selection procedure, including
the Global Environment Facility's Scientific and Technical Advice Panel
or the Dispute Resolution mechanism for the World Trade Organisation. The
SBSTTA may wish to consider requesting the COP to consider such examples
with a view to developing a selection procedure for the SBSTTA.
27. Another intercessional activity emphasised by the
decisions of the second meeting of the COP, supported by the Bureau of
the SBSTTA and mentioned in the contributions received by the Secretariat,
was a greater use of the liaison groups provided for in paragraph 10 of
the modus operandi. A number of matters that the COP has sought
advice about from the SBSTTA might benefit from consideration by liaison
groups. These include: the CHM; economic advice, particularly on the types
of processes and activities that have an adverse impact on the components
of biological diversity; developing a list of such activities in line with
Article 7 and Annex I of the Convention (which will be considered by the
third meeting of the COP in November); the development of indicators for
the Convention; and implementing the Jakarta Mandate on Marine and Coastal
Biological Diversity. These issues would all benefit from the use of an
intercessional liaison group, which could allow the SBSTTA to provide better
advice the COP in a more iterative way than simply relying upon recommendations.
28. The modus operandi, however, provides little
guidance to the SBSTTA as to what exactly a liaison group is, how it differs
from an ad hoc panel of experts, for what type of situations it might be
the preferred intercessional activity, or how the provisions of the modus
operandi apply to their use. More detailed guidance in the modus
operandi may well encourage their use. The SBSTTA may therefore wish
to consider: (a) the purposes of liaison groups and how they differ from
other types of intercessional working groups; (b) the procedure for selecting
the members of liaison groups; (c) procedures for determining the terms
of reference; (d) the duration of the liaison groups; and (e) whether liaison
groups can provide advice to the SBSTTA only or whether they can advise
the Bureau of the SBSTTA, the Bureau of the COP, the Secretariat, or even
the COP directly.
Developing relationships with other processes through
29. The calender for the next couple of years contains
an ever-increasing number of meetings and events that are of direct and
immediate relevance to the aims of the Convention. The need to work with
these processes is recognised in the Convention and has been acknowledged
by the COP. Several of the decisions of the second meeting of the COP adopted
statements for other processes. For example, decision II/9 adopted a statement
for the Intergovernmental Panel on Forests, and decision II/16 adopted
a statement for the International Technical Conference on the Conservation
and Utilization of Plant Genetic Resources for Food and Agriculture. More
generally, decision II/13 recognised significant synergies and complementarities
existing between the aims of the Convention and many other international
processes. It also stressed the need to avoid the unnecessary duplication
of activities. Consequently, the COP requested the Executive Secretary
to strengthen relationships with other relevant conventions and processes.
30. The sheer number and breadth of these relevant processes
makes it difficult for the Secretariat to adequately represent the Convention
at all of these meetings. Given the considerable expertise and experience
of the members of the Bureau of the SBSTTA, the SBSTTA may wish to consider
ways and means by which this expertise can be used to support the Secretariat
in representing the Convention in these other processes, thereby enhancing
the extent to which these other processes can support the aims of the Convention
and minimising duplication of activities and costs on the part of the Parties.
Specific suggestions received by the Secretariat include the use of the
members of the Bureau to not only represent the Convention at relevant
meetings but to help incorporate the results of these meetings into the
work of the Secretariat in preparing the documents for meetings of the
SBSTTA and the COP. Accordingly, the SBSTTA may wish consider such suggestions.
31. Closer cooperation with other process can also be
achieved by coordinating the agendas and working programmes of the SBSTTA
and the COP with these other processes. Greater cooperation along these
lines might be achieved by inviting other processes to submit draft agendas
and draft programmes of work. The SBSTTA may even wish to consider having
their consideration as a standing item on the agenda. Coordination with
other processes would obviously require liaising and negotiating with the
relevant institutions. The SBSTTA may wish to consider establishing a special
committee that would have the necessary authority to undertake preliminary
discussions with other processes in order to consider and investigate possible
32. One particular process that has considerable synergies
with SBSTTA's work is the Global Environment Facility's Scientific and
Technical Advisory Panel. Although decision II/6 provides for reciprocal
representation at the two bodies' meetings, due to the considerable overlap
in work programmes, the SBSTTA may wish to consider increasing collaboration
between the two processes. Specific suggestions along these lines received
by the Secretariat include: reciprocal representation at the Bureau level
and the development of joint research initiatives on topics of mutual interest.
33. SBSTTA may wish also to consider co-representation
with other processes.
34. Many of the above suggestions might be most usefully
implemented in the context of several programmes identified by the SBSTTA,
which would not only help the Bureau of the SBSTTA to consider methods
of cooperation but could also be used to guide the other institutions of
the Convention in their approach to developing closer links. To this end,
the SBSTTA may wish to consider developing a list of processes, programmes,
conventions and institutions that could be used to guide these processes.
Networks of research centres of excellence
35. Article 25, paragraph 2 (a), of the Convention requires
the SBSTTA to provide the scientific and technical assessments of the status
of biological diversity required by the Convention. Neither the Secretariat,
the Bureau of the SBSTTA, the SBSTTA itself, or any other body of the Convention
is likely, in the foreseeable future, to be able to undertake the compilation
of primary data for the purpose of carrying out the functions of the SBSTTA.
The SBSTTA's work will be concerned mainly with the review of materials
and the assessment of data and analyses from competent national, regional
and international organizations and institutions. Compilations, surveys,
reviews, assessments and the like, as well as meetings of Panels or other
newly established bodies, will for the foreseeable future rely upon the
promotion and development of an extensive collaborative network involving
relevant national, regional and international organizations and institutions.
36. The SBSTTA may therefore wish to consider how to develop
such a network in order to support its work. In this context, the SBSTTA
may wish to consider establishing a scheme that recognises the important
contribution that certain important research centres of excellence make
to the Convention. Such a suggestion has been made in the report considering
ways and means to overcome the current lack of taxonomists (document UNEP/CBD/SBSTTA/2/5).
Alternatively, or in addition, the SBSTTA may wish to consider specifically
supporting relevant research initiatives by giving them some sort of "seal
of approval". Such a seal of approval may entail financial support
by linking the scheme to the research programme being considered by the
GEF Council at its meeting in October 1996. Alternatively, the SBSTTA may
wish to consider supporting the initiatives in kind. Even if there was
no material support, such a seal of approval would no doubt assist the
initiatives in raising funds for their programmes. The SBSTTA may wish
to consider the terms of reference for developing such a list of a certain
number of projects that it deems crucial to the work of the SBSTTA and
the Convention as a whole.
Recommendation I/1: Recommendation on the modus
operandi of the Subsidiary Body on Scientific, Technical and Technological
Recalling the relevant provisions of the Convention
on Biological Diversity, in particular Article 25, and the principles contained
in the preamble of the Convention;
Recalling also the decisions of the first meeting
of the Conference of the Parties to the Convention on Biological Diversity,
held in Nassau, Bahamas, from 28 November to 9 December 1994, and
in particular its decision I/7 on the Subsidiary Body on Scientific,
Technical and Technological Advice (SBSTTA);
The first meeting of the SBSTTA, held in Paris at the
Headquarters of UNESCO from 4-8 September 1995, recommends for the consideration
and adoption by the second meeting of the Conference of the Parties, to
be held in Jakarta, Indonesia, from 6 to 17 November 1995, the following
additional elements on its modus operandi:
1. The functions of the SBSTTA are those contained in
Article 25 of the Convention. Accordingly, the SBSTTA will fulfil
its mandate under the authority of, and in accordance with, guidance laid
down by the Conference of the Parties, and upon its request.
2. Pursuant to Article 25, paragraph 3, the functions,
terms of reference, organization and operation of the SBSTTA may be further
elaborated, for approval by the Conference of the Parties.
II. Rules of procedure
3. The Rules of Procedure for meetings of the Conference
of the Parties to the Convention on Biological Diversity shall apply, in
accordance with rule 26, paragraph 5, mutatis mutandis to the proceedings
of the SBSTTA. Therefore, rule 18 on credentials will not apply.
4. In accordance with rule 52, the official and working
languages of the SBSTTA will be those of the United Nations Organization.
Accordingly, the proceedings of the SBSTTA will be carried out in the working
languages of the Conference of the Parties.
5. The Chairman of the SBSTTA, elected at an ordinary
meeting of the Conference of the Parties, shall remain in office until
his or her successor is elected at the next ordinary meeting of the Conference
of the Parties.
III. Frequency and timing of the SBSTTA
6. The SBSTTA shall meet annually and sufficiently in
advance of each regular meeting of the Conference of the Parties, for a
duration to be determined by the Conference of the Parties. The number
and length of the meetings and activities of the SBSTTA and its organs
should be reflected in the budget adopted by the Conference of the Parties
or other sources of extra-budgetary funding.
7. The documentation prepared for meetings will be concrete,
focused draft technical reports and will include proposed conclusions and
recommendations for consideration of the SBSTTA.
V. Organization of work during the meetings
8. Two open-ended sessional working groups of the SBSTTA
could be established and operate simultaneously during meetings of the
SBSTTA. They shall be established on the basis of well-defined terms of
reference, and will be open to all Parties and observers. The financial
implications of these arrangements should be reflected in the budget of
VI. Ad hoc technical panels of experts
9. A limited number of ad hoc technical panels of experts
on specific priority issues on the programme of work of the SBSTTA may
be established, as required, for a limited duration. The establishment
of such ad hoc technical panels of experts would be guided by the following
(a) The ad hoc technical panels of experts should draw
on the existing knowledge and competence available within, and liaise with,
international, regional and national organizations, including non-governmental
organizations and the scientific community;
(b) The ad hoc technical panels of experts shall be composed
of a limited number of experts competent in the relevant field of expertise,
taking into account the need for a balanced representation of the five
regional groups referred to in United Nations General Assembly resolution
2997 (XXVII) of 15 December 1972 which would each year, designate
members to be represented in each of the established Intergovernmental
Technical Panels of Experts, taking also into account the provision of
rule 21, paragraph 1, of the rules of procedure for meetings
of the Conference of the Parties;
(c) The SBSTTA will recommend the exact duration and specific
terms of reference, when establishing such panels for the approval of the
Conference of the Parties;
(d) Panels will be encouraged to use innovative means
of communication and to minimize the need for face-to-face meetings;
(e) The ad hoc technical panels of experts may also convene
meetings parallel to the proceedings of the SBSTTA;
(f) All efforts will be made to provide adequate voluntary
financial assistance for the participation of experts of the panels from
developing countries and countries with economies in transition Parties;
(g) The number of ad hoc technical panels of experts active
each year will be limited to a maximum of three and will depend on the
amount of resources designated to the SBSTTA by the Conference of the Parties
in its budget or on the availability of extra-budgetary resources.
10. In addition, and in order to avoid duplication of
efforts and facilitate the use of available scientific, technical and technological
competence available within international organizations, including non-governmental
organizations, the Executive Secretary may establish, in consultation with
the Chairperson and the other members of the Bureau of the SBSTTA, liaison
groups, as appropriate. Such liaison groups will depend on the resources
available and the results should be widely reported to Parties in a transparent
VII. Contribution of non-governmental organizations
11. The scientific and technical contribution of non-governmental
organizations to the fulfilment of the mandate of the SBSTTA will be strongly
encouraged in accordance with the relevant provisions of the Convention
and the rules of procedure for meetings of the Conference of the Parties.
VIII. Cooperation with other relevant bodies
12. The SBSTTA shall cooperate with other relevant international,
regional and national organizations, under the guidance of the Convention
of the Parties, thus building upon the vast experience and knowledge available.
13. In this context, the SBSTTA emphasizes the importance
of research to further increase available knowledge and reduce uncertainties,
and recommends that the Conference of the Parties consider this issue in
relation to the financial resources required for the effective implementation
of the Convention.
IX. Regional and subregional preparatory meetings
14. Regional and subregional meetings for the preparation
of regular meetings of the SBSTTA may be organized as appropriate. The
possibility of combining such meetings with those regional preparatory
meetings of the Conference of the Parties, in order to make maximum use
of available resources, should be considered. The convening of such regional
and subregional meetings will be subject to the availability of voluntary
15. The SBSTTA should, in the fulfilment of its mandate,
draw upon the contributions of the existing regional and subregional intergovernmental
organizations or initiatives.
X. Focal points
16. A list of focal points and focal persons to the SBSTTA
shall be established and regularly updated by the Secretariat, on the basis
of information provided by Parties and other relevant regional, sub-regional
and intergovernmental organizations.
XI. Roster of experts
17. A roster of experts, in the relevant fields of the
Convention, will be compiled by the Secretariat from a list of experts
provided by Governments and relevant intergovernmental and non-governmental
organizations. The roster of experts will be regularly updated.
18. The ad hoc technical panels of experts referred to
in paragraph 9 above should make full use of such a roster of experts.