CFS:2003/INF/10


COMMITTEE ON WORLD FOOD SECURITY

Twenty-ninth Session

Rome, 12-16 May 2003

INFORMATION NOTE ON THE COST OF
THE WORLD FOOD SUMMIT: FIVE YEARS LATER (WFS:fyl)

Table of Contents



INTRODUCTION

1. The World Food Summit (WFS) was approved by the FAO Conference in October 1995 and held at FAO from 13 to 17 November, 1996. It brought together world leaders who made commitments to the eradication of hunger and malnutrition and adopted the Rome Declaration and WFS Plan of Action. The World Food Summit: five years later (WFS:fyl), held from 10 to 13 June 2002 was convened at the highest political level, to renew their commitments and to give new impetus, five years after the original Summit, to the implementation of the WFS Plan of Action.

2. As outlined in the following report, in accordance with the approach approved by the Council at its Hundred and twentieth Session, the Director-General kept incremental costs to a minimum by convening the WFS:fyl in conjunction with the 28th Session of the Committee on World Food Security (CFS) and by utilising the debates of the FAO Regional Conferences as inputs to the CFS deliberations and subsequently to the WFS:fyl.

RESOURCES AND COSTS

Scope and Definitions of Regular Programme Resources and Costs

3. As with the WFS, a great deal of activity was directed towards the successful outcome of the WFS:fyl. It is therefore important to understand the nature of the resources used. Resources were obtained from two sources: from FAO’s Regular Programme budget and from voluntary contributions from donors or sponsors, either in the form of cash or “in kind”.

4. It will be recalled that at its Hundred and twentieth Session, the Council considered document CL120/LIM/3 which defined the application of Regular Programme resources under three categories of expenditure as follows:

Regular Programme Costs Incurred

5. Table 1 below shows the Regular Programme costs incurred in 2001 and 2002, in preparing for and hosting the WFS:fyl at FAO Headquarters.

Table 1. WFS:fyl Regular Programme Costs Incurred

Component

Redirected Costs

Direct Incremental Costs

Total

US$ 000s

US$ 000s

US$ 000s

WFS:fyl – including Plenary, MSD and Round Tables

480

423

903

Side events to the WFS:fyl

342

342

Registration and Liaison

209

40

249

Facilities and Infrastructure

305

305

Other costs

131

131

Totals

1 467

463

1 930

6. The costs shown in the first two rows of the table above, relate to the costs of the main events of the Summit, the Plenary sessions, the Round Tables and the Multi-stakeholder dialogue, and the costs of the various side events and meetings which took place in parallel to the Summit. In both cases, the costs stated include documentation, translation, interpretation and related preparatory costs.

7. Included in Registration and Liaison costs, are both those activities which took place in Rome and those at the country level. The Facilities and Infrastructure costs include those related to the registration centre itself, communications and information technology support, catering and security services. Finally, in the table above, the Other costs include support to the office which coordinated preparation for the WFS:fyl.

Costs not included

8. As indicated in paragraph 4 above, certain costs are excluded from Table 1 as they have been determined to be either absorbed costs, incurred on related activities already included in the Regular Programme of Work, or unquantifiable, such as the costs of staff who contributed directly to the event.

9. Absorbed costs include the contributions made by the General Affairs and Information Department (GI) in planning, coordinating and servicing conferences, and in particular in GII in its role of providing support to FAO’s technical programmes in disseminating information on global food issues and the Organization’s contribution to them.

10. Furthermore, under the Administration and Finance Department, the Administrative Services Division (AFS) has as part of its regular function, those of providing security and reception services, which were naturally directed toward the WFS:fyl during the duration of the event.

11. This category of excluded costs also refers to support work undertaken by divisions which experienced an increased workload due to the WFS:fyl. For example, the Finance Division (AFF) processed additional funds which passed through FAO as a result of the event.

12. Included in unquantifiable costs are those of the over 600 staff who contributed directly to the success of the WFS:fyl by volunteering their services for various roles (e.g. liaison aides, protocol and security aides, computer support, etc.). In addition, based on the experience of the WFS, departments took the same participatory approach to the WFS:fyl and hence staff across the Organization were involved in preparatory activities as a normal part of their various functions.

SCOPE AND DEFINITIONS OF EXTRA-BUDGETARY RESOURCES

13. Substantial extra-budgetary contributions were received. They were categorised as:

Voluntary Cash Contributions

14. Voluntary cash contributions are handled under Trust Funds and each contribution is separately recorded. The figures given below represent expenditures and commitments as at the end of February, 2003.

15. Contributions were received from twelve members (including the European Community) and four agencies and private companies. A total of US$ 2 145 000 was received or firmly pledged and of this amount US$ 1 848 000 had at the time of writing, been expensed and documented in the appropriate accounts. It is noteworthy that the largest Trust Fund donor was the host government, which made substantial contributions. The following is a description of the various activities for which funds were donated and the related amounts spent.

Participation of Non-Governmental Organisations (NGOs) and
Civil Society Organisations (CSOs) in the WFS:fyl – US$ 708 000

16. In order to involve all sectors of Civil Society, a number of key events were organised including an NGO Forum and the Multi-stakeholder dialogue, designed to encourage the active participation of NGOs and CSOs. These can be considered to have been considerable successes, attracting large numbers of participants, from NGOs, CSOs and government. Voluntary contributions allowed for the participation of some 280 people at the Multi-stakeholder dialogue, 173 representing NGOs/CSOs, 54 representing Governments and 6 representing UN institutions.

Travel and Accommodation Assistance for Delegations, Journalists, etc. – US$406000

17. FAO Trust Fund donors, including IFAD and WFP, generously made funds available to support the cost of participation of developing country delegations and journalists in the WFS:fyl.

Parallel and Side Events – US$ 326 000

18. Trust Fund donations to FAO allowed a number of additional key events to be held during the period of the WFS:fyl. The Italian Government donated funds for the Parliamentarian meeting which was attended by over 200 members of Parliament from over 80 countries, and for the side-events for the Regional Economic Organisations. Funding was also received for a side-event focussing on Rural Women in Agriculture.

Infrastructure and Facilities – US$ 408 000

19. Specific costs for temporary infrastructure required for the WFS:fyl, in particular for the Registration Centre and for communications support and media facilities, were covered by donations from governmental and inter-governmental donors and by Parmalat.

Voluntary Contributions in Kind

20. Generous support was also provided by two private sector sponsors, Parmalat and Filmater SrL, the former providing food items and water and the latter sponsoring WFS:fyl television material. These donations were valued at approximately US$ 280 000.

Table 2. Financial and In-Kind Contributors to WFS:fyl

PUBLIC SECTOR
Governments / Regions
Belgium
Canada
European Community
France
Ireland
Iran
Italy
Norway
Oman
Republic of Korea
Spain
Sweden
Agencies
IFAD
WFP
PRIVATE SECTOR
Filmater SrL
Parmalat

CONCLUSION

21. The WFS:fyl was a major element in the Strategic Framework’s Corporate Strategy E.3, which aims to ensure a “central place for food security on the international agenda”. It followed on from the 1996 WFS where commitments were made at the highest political level to the Rome Declaration and Plan of Action. The WFS:fyl afforded the world’s leaders the opportunity to reaffirm their commitment through participation, dialogue and the Declaration of the World Food Summit: five years later, International Alliance Against Hunger.

22. The costs identified above total just over US$ 4 million and consist of:

US$ 000

direct incremental costs funded from the Regular Programme

463

redirected costs involving contributions made by divisions from within their existing allotments

1,467

voluntary contributions in cash

1,848

the estimated value of voluntary contributions in-kind

280

Total estimated cost

4,058

23. It is notable that such a small direct incremental cost to the Regular Programme (i.e. US$463000) could have successfully leveraged sufficient resources to fund the WFS:fyl and that such a small investment made by FAO could thus increase global awareness of the fight against hunger, and of FAO’s leading role in it.