a) Venue of the Twentieth Session of APCAS
140. India and Iran offered to host the Twentieth Session of the Commission scheduled for 2004. The delegate from India confirmed the offer made by his country at the last session of the Commission in Bali in 2000 to host the 2004 Session of APCAS; this offer had also been reiterated in writing to the Secretariat of the Commission. The delegate from Iran expressed his country's availability to receive the Commission in 2004 rather than in 2006 as per the original intention reported two years ago in Indonesia. The FAO Secretariat will consider both offers and advise members of arrangements for the Twentieth Session of APCAS.
141. The Commission agreed to continue to have a medium-term indicative schedule of venues for its future sessions. For the sessions after 2004, the delegate from Thailand confirmed her country's availability as expressed in 2000 in Bali to host the 2006 Session. The delegate from New Zealand also expressed his country's willingness to host the Commission Session in 2006 or 2008.
142. The Commission was informed of the launch in 1999 of the Consortium, Partnerships in Statistics for Development in the 21st Century (PARIS21). The activities of the Consortium were described as well as those of its Task Teams, especially the Rural and Agricultural Statistics Task Team. Particular mention was made of the seminar on new partnerships for capacity building in agricultural statistics for monitoring poverty reduction and food security in Africa, which was held in Paris, France in September 2002.
143. The Commission was informed of the subsequent creation of the Trust Fund for Statistics Capacity Building (TFSCB) that was managed by the World Bank and was advised of the opportunity for countries to avail themselves of this potential source of funding for statistics capacity building.
c) Other Business
144. The Commission agreed that countries in the Asia and Pacific region that had lately become members of FAO should be informed of the possibility for them to become members of APCAS. It was further informed of the recommendation proposed by the evaluation mission of the two regional projects funded by Japan that a newsletter be regularly issued under the aegis of the Commission.
145. The Commission was reminded of the format for country statements adopted at the 1992 Session. It agreed that presentations of the country statements should be focused, keeping in mind the Commission terms of reference. It noted that these statements were informative and useful for future reference. It recognized that adopting a theme for each of its sessions would help to achieve focus in the deliberations but it also considered the possibility that specifying a specialized subject might result in non-reporting of important developments in the statistics systems of member countries.
146. The Commission expressed appreciation and thanks to the host, the Government of the Republic of Korea, for arranging a field visit for the delegates to the National Horticulture Research Institute at Suwon.