LEGAL AND ADMINISTRATIVE MATTERS

AMENDMENTS TO THE BASIC TEXTS OF THE ORGANIZATION

General Rules of the Organization26

120. The Conference noted that, at its Hundred and Fourteenth Session in November 1997, the Council had mandated the Joint Meeting of the Programme and Finance Committees to review the procedures and methods of work for Conference Sessions, including voting and relevant rules of the General Rules of the Organization. The Joint Meetings of the Programme and Finance Committees in May and September 1998 and the Committee on Constitutional and Legal Matters (CCLM), at its Sixty-eighth Session in September 1998, had considered the matter in great detail.

121. The Conference also noted that, at its Hundred and Fifteenth Session (November 1998), the Council had reviewed the procedures and methods of work for Conference Sessions, in the light of the proposals of the Joint Meetings of the Programme and Finance Committees and the report of the CCLM, and provided further guidance to the CCLM on the matter. In particular, the Council had requested the CCLM to submit to its Hundred and Sixteenth Session ( June 1999) draft amendments to the General Rules of the Organization to permit the abolition of the Nominations Committee and the transfer of its functions to the Council, including designation of the Credentials Committee by the June Session of the Council, subject to formal election by the Conference; the introduction of an electronic voting system; the election of Council Members by clear general consent whenever the number of candidates was equal to the number of vacancies; and the elimination of references to Conference Technical Committees.

122. The Conference noted that the CCLM had examined, at its Sixty-ninth Session, the draft amendments to the General Rules and a Draft Resolution for the Conference, which were endorsed subsequently by the Council at its Hundred and Sixteenth Session.

123. Consequently, the Conference adopted the following Resolution:

RESOLUTION 4/99
Amendments to the General Rules of the Organization

THE CONFERENCE,

Recalling that the Council, at its Hundred and Fourteenth Session in November 1997, requested the Joint Meeting of the Programme and Finance Committees to review the procedures and methods of work for Conference Sessions, including voting and relevant General Rules of the Organization, in order to ensure that those procedures are efficient and time effective whilst protecting the rights of individual Members,

Recalling further that the Council, at its Hundred and Fifteenth Session in November 1998, in reviewing the procedures and methods of work for Conference Sessions in the light of the proposals of the Joint Meeting of the Programme and Finance Committees and the comments of the CCLM, requested the CCLM to continue its examination of the Basic Texts and to submit to the June 1999 Council draft amendments to the General Rules of the Organization to permit:

  1. The abolition of the Nominations Committee and the transfer of its functions to the Council, including designation of the Credentials Committee by the June Session of the Council subject to formal election by the Conference,

  2. The introduction of an electronic voting system,

  3. The election of Council Members by clear general consent whenever the number of candidates was equal to the number of vacancies, and

  4. The elimination of references to Conference Technical Committees.

Noting the recommendation of the Council, at its Hundred and Sixteenth Session in June 1999, that the General Rules of the Organization should be amended as proposed by the CCLM, at its Sixty-ninth Session in April 1999,

Adopts the following amendments to the General Rules of the Organization:

Rule VII
Nominations

The Chairman of the Conference, the Chairmen of the Commissions of the Conference, the three Vice-Chairmen of the Conference, the members of the Credentials Committee and the elected members of the General Committee, provided for by Rule X, Paragraph 1 shall be nominated by the Council.

Rule VIII
Election of Chairman and Vice-Chairmen of the Conference and of the members of the Credentials and General Committees

The Conference shall, after consideration of the Report of the Council, elect:

  1. from the delegations, a Chairman and three Vice-Chairmen;

  2. from the Member Nations:
  1. the Credentials Committee, as provided in Rule III, Paragraph 3;
  2. the seven members of the General Committee to be elected as provided in Rule X, Paragraph 1.

Rule XII
Quorum and voting arrangements at meetings of Conference and Council

4 …

  1. Abstentions shall be recorded:
  1. in a vote by show of hands, only for those delegates or representatives who raise their hands in response to the Chairman’s request for abstentions;
  2. in a roll call vote, only for those delegates or representatives who reply "Abstention";
  3. in a secret ballot, only for such ballot papers deposited in the ballot box as are either blank or marked "Abstention".

(iii bis) in a vote by electronic means, only for those delegates or representatives who indicate "Abstention".

...

6. Voting shall be by show of hands, roll call or secret ballot.

7.     (a) Subject to the provisions of paragraph 9 of this Rule, a vote by roll call shall be taken either upon request of a delegate or representative, or if a majority of two thirds is required by the Constitution or these Rules. Voting by roll call shall be conducted by calling in English alphabetical order the names of all Member Nations entitled to vote. The name of the first nation to be called shall be designated by lot drawn by the Chairman. The delegate or representative of each Member Nation shall reply "Yes", "No", or "Abstention". At the conclusion of any roll call, the name of any Member Nation whose delegate or representative failed to answer shall be called again. The vote of each Member Nation participating in any vote by roll call shall be inserted in the record of the meeting.

       (b) The count and recording of votes by show of hands or by roll call shall be conducted by or under the supervision of the Conference or Council Elections Officer, appointed by the Director-General in accordance with the terms of paragraph 16 below.

      (c) If for two successive ballots by roll call the name of the same Member Nation is drawn, the name of another Member Nation shall be designed by lot or lots drawn by the Chairman.

7bis. When the Conference or Council votes by electronic means, a vote without recording names shall replace a vote by show of hands and a nominal vote shall replace a roll-call. In the case of a nominal vote, the procedure of calling out the names of the Members shall not be applicable unless the Conference or Council otherwise decides. The vote of each Member participating in a nominal vote shall be inserted in the record.

9.     (a) The appointment of the Chairman of the Council and of the Director-General, and the admission of additional Member Nations and Associate Members shall be decided by secret ballot. Other elections shall likewise be decided by secret ballot, except that in the case of an election in which there are not more candidates than vacancies the Chairman may submit to the Conference or Council that the appointment be decided by clear general consent.

       (b) Any other matter shall be decided by secret ballot if the Conference or Council so determines.

            …

Rule XV
Other Committees of the Conference

1. The Conference may appoint, or authorize the appointment of, any temporary or special committee which it deems necessary. Delegates of Associate Members shall have the right to participate in the deliberations of any such committee, but shall not hold office nor have the right to vote.

2. The chairman of any committee set up under this Rule shall be elected by such committee. He shall have, in relation to meetings of the committee, the same power and duties as the Chairman of the Conference has in relation to meetings of the Conference. A majority of the Members of the committee shall constitute a quorum. Decisions in the committee shall be taken by a majority of the votes cast. No Member shall have more than one vote. A Member of the committee who is unable to be present at any meeting may be represented by another Member of his delegation. Meetings of the committee shall be held in private, unless otherwise determined by the Conference.

Rule XXIV
Functions of the Council

5. General

The Council shall:

    …

  1. propose candidates for the office of Chairman of the Conference, the Chairmen of the Commissions of the Conference, the three Vice-Chairmen of the Conference, the Members of the Credentials Committee and the elected Members of the General Committee;

Rule XLII
Arrangements for the Conference

2. Member Organizations shall not participate in the Credentials Committee or the General Committee or any other body of the Conference dealing with the internal working of the Conference as the Conference may decide.

(Adopted on 23 November 1999)

Financial Regulations27

124. The Conference considered three sets of amendments to the Financial Regulations of the Organization, in order to change the format of the External Audit Opinion, to change the entity responsible for oversight functions with respect to the investments of the FAO Reserve Fund and to provide for the establishment of a Revolving Fund for FAO Products and Related Services (other than Information Products).

125. The Conference concurred with the amendment to the Annex to the Financial Regulations, dealing with the format for the External Auditor Opinion, which had been proposed by the Finance Committee at its Eighty-ninth Session in May 1998, reviewed by the CCLM at its Sixty-eighth Session in September 1998, and endorsed by the Council at its Hundred and Fifteenth Session in November 1998. The amendment had been proposed upon suggestion by the United Nations Panel of External Auditors in order to ensure that the audit opinion of the External Auditors reflected current best practice, and to maintain consistency throughout the United Nations System.

126. The Conference also agreed with the proposal that the FAO Internal Investment Committee and the FAO Advisory Committee on Investment should replace the oversight function performed by the United Nations Investment Committee (UNIC) over the investments of the FAO Reserve Fund, which involved an amendment to Financial Regulation 9.1. The Conference noted that the proposal had been considered by the Finance Committee at its Eighty-ninth and Ninetieth Sessions, was reviewed by the CCLM at its Sixty-eighth Session in September 1998, and endorsed by the Council at its Hundred and Fifteenth Session in November 1998. The Conference noted also that the reason for the amendment was that the UNIC had communicated to FAO that, as a consequence of an increase of their responsibilities with regard to funds under the authority of the Secretary-General of the United Nations, including the funds of the United Nations Joint Staff Pension Fund, they could not continue to exercise responsibilities with regard to FAO funds.

127. Finally, the Conference agreed with the establishment of a Revolving Fund for FAO Products and Related Services (Other than Information Products). The amendment had been prepared in response to a request by the Finance Committee at its Ninety-third Session in September 1999, was reviewed by the CCLM at its Seventieth Session in September 1999, and endorsed by the Council at its Hundred and Seventeenth Session in November 1999. The Conference noted that there was a need for the establishment of a new Revolving Fund for FAO Products and Related Services, under Financial Regulation 6.9, along the same lines as the existing Information Products Revolving Fund, allowing FAO to reinvest income derived from such products into their maintenance, dissemination and further development. The amendments also allowed funds to be used to pay for the direct costs of the production, sale and marketing of such products, and protection of intellectual property rights in those products. Examples of such products, developed by FAO within the framework of its approved programmes, were the Microbanker software and the new Coconut Water Processing Technology. When approving the amendments, the Conference underlined that the products so developed should be related to the institutional objectives of FAO, that FAO should not be tempted to duplicate the role of the private sector and that arrangements for the exploitation of such products should be in line with the objectives of the Organization, such as ensuring that such products are made widely available to developing countries or sectors at accessible prices.

128. The Conference adopted the following Resolution:

RESOLUTION 5/99
Amendment of Financial Regulations 6.9, 7.1, 9.1 and Paragraph 5 of the Annex to the Financial Regulations

THE CONFERENCE,

Recalling that the Council, at its Hundred and Seventeen Session in November 1999, on the recommendation of the Committee on Constitutional and Legal Matters at its Seventieth Session in September 1999, approved amendments to Financial Regulation 6.9 and 7.1 to provide for the establishment of a Revolving Fund for FAO Products and Related Services (Other than Information Products), as set out in the Report of the Hundred and Seventeenth Session of the Council28,

Taking into account that, regarding the establishment of a Revolving Fund for FAO Products and Related Services (Other than Information Products), the Finance Committee, at its Ninety-third Session in September 199929, noted that the development of such FAO innovated products should continue to be related to the achievement of the institutional objectives of the Organization, that the Organization should not be tempted to duplicate the role of the private commercial sector and that arrangements for the exploitation of such products should be in line with the aims of the Organization, such as ensuring that such products were made widely available to developing countries or sectors at accessible prices,

Taking also into account the wish expressed by the Finance Committee to monitor the implementation of the new Revolving Fund and to receive periodical reports to that effect, and the desirability of avoiding the proliferation of separate Funds,

Considering, in this context, that the experience in the implementation of the proposed new Fund might demonstrate the eventual need to streamline the provisions of Financial Regulation 6.9 relating to Revolving Funds,

Recalling further that the Council, at its Hundred and Fifteenth Session in November 1998 , on the recommendation of the Committee on Constitutional and Legal Matters at its Sixty-eighth Session in September 199830, approved amendments to Financial Regulation 9.1 regarding arrangements for review of investments of the FAO Reserve Fund, as well as amendments of paragraph 5 of the Annex to the Financial Regulations to change the format of the External Audit opinion, as set out in the Report of the Hundred and Fifteenth Session of the Council31,

Adopts the following amendments to the Financial Regulations:

Regulation VI - Funds

6.9 There shall be established

(a) an Information Products Revolving Fund to which shall be credited the proceeds of sales of information products and the revenue from advertising in and sponsorship of such products, except that where extra-budgetary funds are used to finance those information products, the proceeds of sales may be credited to such funds. The Fund shall be used only for the following purposes:

  1. to meet the direct costs of reproducing those information products for the sale of which there is a demand or reproducing new information products;

  2. to pay, from within the resources available to the Fund, the direct costs, including costs of human resources and equipment, not covered by the Programme of Work and Budget, required for the sale and marketing of all such information products; and

  3. to credit the originating divisions with such proportion of the proceeds credited to the Fund, up to 20 percent thereof, as may be determined by the Director- General, to be utilized within the biennium in which it is credited.

Any balance at the end of each financial period in excess of such sums as may be approved by the Finance Committee to cover commitments in respect of expenditures proposed by the Director-General for the following biennium shall be transferred to Miscellaneous Income.

(b) a Revolving Fund for FAO Products and Related Services other than Information Products to which shall be credited the proceeds of sales of such products as well as proceeds derived from licensing and other arrangements for their use, except that where extra-budgetary funds are used to finance the development of such products, such proceeds may be credited to such funds. The Fund shall be used only for the following purposes:

  1. to meet the direct costs of maintaining and further developing such products and making them widely available, and for developing new products;

  2. to pay for direct costs of the production, sale and marketing of all such products, and protection of the property rights of these products.

Any balance at the end of each financial period in excess of such sums as may be approved by the Finance Committee to cover commitments in respect of expenditures proposed by the Director-General for the following biennium shall be transferred to Miscellaneous Income.

Regulation VII - Other income

7.1 Contributions from Associate Members and all receipts other than:

  1. contributions from Member Nations to the budget,

  2. direct refunds of expenditures made during the financial period,

  3. advances by Member Nations to the Working Capital Fund or deposits to Trust and Special Funds and other receipts directly related to those funds, and

  4. proceeds of sales of information products and the revenue from advertising in and sponsorship of such products, and proceeds of sales of FAO products and related services, other than information products, developed by FAO, and proceeds derived from licensing and other arrangements for their use,

shall be classified as Miscellaneous Income, for credit to the General Fund. Interest or other income derived from any Trust or Special Fund accepted by the Organization shall be credited to the fund to which it relates, unless provided for otherwise by the terms of the applicable Trust or Special Fund agreement.

Regulation IX - Investment of funds

9.1 The Director-General may invest moneys not needed for immediate requirements seeking, wherever practicable, the advice of an Advisory Committee on Investments composed of not less than three and not more than five members appointed by the Director-General from persons outside the Organization having substantial experience in the financial sector. The investment of moneys standing to the credit of any Trust Fund, Reserve or Special Account shall be subject to any directives of the appropriate authority.

Paragraph 5 of the Annex to the Financial Regulation

5. The External Auditor shall express and sign an opinion on the financial statements. The opinion shall include the following basic elements:

  1. the identification of the financial statements audited;

  2. a reference to the responsibility of the entity’s management and the responsibility of the auditor;

  3. a reference to the audit standards followed;

  4. a description of the work performed;

  5. an expression of opinion on the financial statements as to whether:

- the financial statements present fairly the financial position as at the end of the period and the results of the operations for the period;
- the financial statements were prepared in accordance with the stated accounting policies; and
- the accounting policies were applied on a basis consistent with that of the preceding financial period;

  1. an expression of opinion on the compliance of transactions with the financial regulations and legislative authority;

  2. the date of the opinion;

  3. the external auditor’s name and position; and

  4. should it be necessary, a reference to the report of the External Auditor on the financial statements.

(Adopted on 23 November 1999)

AMENDMENTS TO THE GENERAL REGULATIONS AND RULES OF WFP32

129. The Conference noted that the WFP Executive Board had established a Formal Working Group in May 1998 to review WFP Resource and Long-Term Financial Policies, to recommend any necessary changes to improve their effectiveness and to enhance its ability to attract contributions of Members. The implementation of the proposals of the Working Group involved a few changes to the Financial Regulations, the General Rules and, in particular, to Article XIII, Paragraph 2 of the General Regulations of WFP. This amendment allowed for more flexibility in accepting contributions from developing countries, countries with economies in transition and other non-traditional donors, under conditions laid down in the General Rules of the Programme. The amendment was approved by the WFP Executive Board and endorsed by the FAO Council, at its Hundred and Sixteenth Session in June 1999. A parallel amendment was also endorsed by ECOSOC by Resolution 1999/220 of 23 July 1999 and approved by the United Nations General Assembly.

130. The Conference amended Article XIII, Paragraph 2 of the General Regulations of WFP to read as follows:

ARTICLE XIII, PARAGRAPH 2 of the General Regulations of WFP

Article XIII, Paragraph 2:

Donors may contribute appropriate commodities, cash and acceptable services in accordance with the general rules made pursuant to these General Regulations. Except as otherwise provided in such general rules in respect of developing countries, countries with economies in transition and other non-traditional donors, or in respect of other exceptional situations, each donor shall provide cash contributions sufficient to cover the full operational and support costs of its contributions.

131. The Conference also noted that, by parallel resolutions, the United Nations General Assembly and the FAO Conference in 1995 had decided that the distribution of seats of the Executive Board of WFP should be reviewed within two years after its establishment, that the review should be conducted in parallel by the General Assembly and the FAO Conference, taking into account relevant inputs from ECOSOC and the Council of FAO, and that the new proposals should enter into force on 1 January 2000. Parallel working groups, based in New York and in Rome, reached a consensus position which was reflected in a parallel Draft Resolution for the UNGA and the FAO Conference.

132. The Draft Resolution was endorsed by ECOSOC on 26 March 1999 and approved as Resolution 53/223 by the United Nations General Assembly on 7 April 1999. The Draft Resolution for the Conference was endorsed by the FAO Council at its Hundred and Sixteenth Session in June 1999.

133. The Conference then adopted the following Resolution:

RESOLUTION 6/99
Amendment to Appendix B of the WFP General Regulations

THE CONFERENCE,

Recalling its Resolution 9/95 of 1 November 1995, concerning the revision of the General Regulations of the World Food Programme,

Noting Resolution 53/223 adopted by the General Assembly of the United Nations on 7 April 1999, on the revision of the General Regulations of the World Food Programme,

  1. Decides, subject to the concurrence of the General Assembly of the United Nations, that the Members of the Executive Board of the World Food Programme shall be elected on an interim basis for a term of three years from among the States included in the Lists set out in the Basic Texts of the World Food Programme, in accordance with the following distribution of seats, it being understood that this allocation of seats creates no precedent for the composition of other United Nations bodies of limited membership:
  1. Eight Members from the States included in List A, four Members to be elected by the Economic and Social Council and four by the Council of the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations;

  2. Seven Members from the States included in List B, four Members to be elected by the Economic and Social Council and three by the Council of the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations;

  3. Five Members from the States included in List C, two Members to be elected by the Economic and Social Council and three by the Council of the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations;

  4. Twelve Members from the States included in List D, six Members to be elected by the Economic and Social Council and six by the Council of the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations;

  5. Three Members from the States included in List E, two Members to be elected by the Economic and Social Council and one by the Council of the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations;

  6. One additional Member rotating among the States included in Lists A, B, and C to be elected by the Council of the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations; the pattern of rotation shall be as follows:
  1. A State from List A is to be elected to occupy the additional seat every other term out of four, starting from 1 January 2000;
  2. A State from List B is to be elected to occupy the additional seat the second term out of four, starting from 1 January 2003;
  3. A State from List C is to be elected to occupy the additional seat the fourth term out of four, starting from 1 January 2009;
  1. Decides that the above-mentioned distribution of seats shall be reviewed two years before the end of one full rotation scheme of four terms, as referred to in paragraph 1(f) of the present Resolution. Such a review shall be in accordance with relevant provisions of General Assembly Resolutions 48/162 and 50/8, taking into account the relevant inputs of the Economic and Social Council and the Council of the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations; the result of the review shall enter into force on 1 January 2012;

  2. Decides further that, subject to concurrence of the General Assembly of the United Nations, the revised General Regulations shall enter into force on 1 January 2000.

(Adopted on 13 November 1999)

OTHER CONSTITUTIONAL AND LEGAL MATTERS

Cooperation Agreement between FAO and the Intergovernmental Organization for Marketing Information and Cooperation Services for Fishery Products in Africa (INFOPÊCHE)33

134. The Conference expressed satisfaction with the strengthening of the cooperation between the Intergovernmental Organization for Marketing Information and Cooperation Services for Fishery Products in Africa (INFOPÊCHE) and FAO.

135. The Conference noted that the Council, at its Hundred and Seventeenth Session in November 1999, had endorsed the proposed Agreement. The Conference confirmed the Cooperation Agreement as set out in Appendix D to this Report.

Cooperation Agreement between FAO and the Lake Victoria Fisheries Organization (LVFO)34

136. The Conference expressed satisfaction with the strengthening of the cooperation between the Lake Victoria Fisheries Organization (LVFO) and FAO.

137. The Conference noted that the Council, at its Hundred and Seventeenth Session in November 1999, had endorsed the proposed Agreement. The Conference confirmed the Cooperation Agreement as set out in Appendix E to this Report.

Cooperation Agreement between FAO and the Centre for Marketing Information and Advisory Services for Fishery Products in Latin America and the Caribbean (INFOPESCA)35

138. The Conference expressed its satisfaction with the strengthening of the cooperation between the Centre for Marketing Information and Advisory Services for Fishery Products in Latin America and the Caribbean (INFOPESCA) and FAO.

139. The Conference noted that the Council, at its Hundred and Seventeenth Session in November 1999, had endorsed the proposed Agreement. The Conference confirmed the Cooperation Agreement as set out in Appendix F to this Report.

Use of Gender Neutral Language in the Basic Texts36

140. The Conference considered the question of the use of gender neutral language in the Basic Texts of FAO on the basis of the Report of the Hundred and Seventeenth Session of the Council in November 1999.

141. The Conference noted that the fact that the English language version of the Basic Texts contained many examples of language referring to one gender only should not cause any substantive legal problems, inasmuch it would be assumed, in accordance with generally accepted rules of interpretation, that the use of the masculine gender includes the feminine gender when referring to office-holders. The Conference agreed with the proposal made by the Committee on Constitutional and Legal Matters (CCLM), at its Seventeenth Session in September 1999, endorsed by the Council at its Hundred and Seventeenth Session in November 1999, that a Resolution be adopted by the Conference clarifying that the use of one gender should be considered as including a reference to the other, unless the context otherwise requires.

142. Consequently, the Conference adopted the following Resolution:

RESOLUTION 7/99
Use of Gender-Neutral Language in the Basic Texts

THE CONFERENCE,

Noting the importance of gender-neutral language in the constitutive documents of the Organization,

Noting, however, the technical impact and the expenses that would be incurred by amending the entire Basic Texts,

Noting the views and recommendations of the Committee on Constitutional and Legal Matters as expressed at its Seventieth Session in September 1999,

Resolves that in the Basic Texts, in accordance with the generally accepted rules of interpretation, the use of one gender shall be considered as including a reference to the other unless the context otherwise requires.

(Adopted on 18 November 1999)

FAO AUDITED ACCOUNTS 1996-9737

143. The Conference took note of the Audited Accounts 1996-97 and the Report of the External Auditor, as reviewed by the Finance Committee at its Ninetieth Session and by the Council at its Hundred and Fifteenth Session and adopted the following Resolution:

RESOLUTION 8/99
FAO Audited Accounts 1996-97

THE CONFERENCE,

Having considered the report of the Hundred and Fifteenth Session of the Council,

Having examined the 1996-97 FAO Audited Accounts and the External Auditor’s Report thereon,

Adopts the Audited Accounts.

(Adopted on 23 November 1999)

SCALE OF CONTRIBUTIONS 2000-200138

144. The Conference recalled that it had been the normal practice of the Organization to derive the Scale of Contributions for the next biennium directly from the United Nations Scale of Assessments in force during the calendar year of the Conference Session. In 1997, however, the Conference had adopted for the biennium 1998-1999 a Scale of Contributions derived from the United Nations Scale of Assessments in force during 1997, but had requested the Director-General to prepare a modified Scale of Contributions for 1999 should the United Nations General Assembly adopt, before 31 December 1998, a new Scale of Assessments for the triennium 1998-2000.

145. The Conference noted that the UN General Assembly was expected to reach agreement during year 2000 on the United Nations Scale of Assessments to be applied for the years 2001-2003, and that the largest contributor had declared its intention to negotiate a reduction in its maximum ceiling rate.

146. The Conference further noted that the Scale recommended by the Council had been duly modified to include the new Members (Kiribati, Marshall Islands, Niue, Palau and San Marino) admitted at the Thirtieth Session of the Conference (See operative paragraph 1 of Resolution 9/99)

147. One Member Nation expressed reservations on the proposed Draft Resolution, and believed that it was incompatible with the Financial Regulations of the Basic Texts of FAO and its traditional practices, in particular with regard to its admissibility from a legal point of view. Another Member Nation expressed its strong concern at the possible increase of assessed contributions of many Member Nations, in particular Asian nations, and about the need to modify the FAO Scale of Contributions to reflect the new UN Scale of Assessments before the next session of the Conference.

148. The Conference adopted the following Resolution:

RESOLUTION 9/99
Scale of Contributions 2000-2001

THE CONFERENCE,

Having noted the recommendations of the Hundred and Sixteenth and Hundred and Seventeenth Sessions of the Council,

Confirming that, as in the past, FAO should follow the United Nations Scale of Assessments subject to the adaptation for the different membership of FAO,

Noting that the United Nations General Assembly is expected next year to reach agreement on the United Nations Scale of Assessments to be applied for the years 2001-2003,

Further noting that the 1997 FAO Conference adopted Resolution 15/97 directing the Director-General to prepare a modified Scale of Contributions for the second year of the 1998-99 biennium, based on the expectation of the adoption by the United Nations of a new Scale of Assessments after the completion of the 1997 Conference:

  1. Adopts for use in 2000 and 2001 the Scale as set out in Appendix G of this Report, derived directly from the United Nations Scale of Assessments in force for 2000;

  2. Decides that if the United Nations General Assembly adopts a new United Nations Scale of Assessments for the years 2001 to 2003 before 31 December 2000, the Director-General shall prepare a modified Scale of Contributions for the year 2001 to reflect the Scale of Assessments for that year fixed by the United Nations General Assembly, applying established principles for adjusting the FAO Scale of Assessment to take into account differences in membership between the United Nations and FAO.

(Adopted on 19 November 1999)

PAYMENT BY THE EUROPEAN COMMUNITY TO COVER EXPENSES ARISING OUT OF ITS MEMBERSHIP IN THE ORGANIZATION39

149. Article XVIII.6 of the Constitution provides that:

"A Member Organization shall not be required to contribute to the budget as specified in paragraph 2 of this Article, but shall pay to the Organization a sum to be determined by the Conference to cover administrative and other expenses arising out of its membership in the Organization .."

At its Twenty-sixth Session in 1991, the Conference had fixed the sum to be paid by the European Community for the 1992-1993 biennium at US$ 500 000. At its Twenty-seventh Session in 1993, the Conference had again set the amount of the payment due by the EC for the 1994-1995 biennium at US$ 500 000: this sum was arrived at by taking the lump-sum payment set by the Conference in 1991, increasing it in line with the standard cost increase coefficient adopted for the 1994/1995 budget, and adjusting it in line with the comparative movements of the US and Italian currencies. The Conference had further decided that the sums paid by the EC in respect of administrative and other expenses should be paid into a Trust or Special Fund to be established by the Director-General under Regulation 6.7 of the Financial Regulations.

150. At the request of the Conference, the Finance Committee, at its Seventy-eighth Session in April 1994, had considered further the methodology for the calculation of the sum to be paid by Member Organizations to cover administrative and other expenses arising out of their membership in the Organization. The Committee

"recommended that, in future, the Conference should continue to set the payment due for administrative and other expenses arising out of membership in the Organization at a lump-sum, calculated on the basis of the lump-sum set for the preceding biennium, adjusted to take into account cost increases in line with the rest of the budget, and the setting of the US Dollar/Italian Lire 'budget rate'. This would of course be without prejudice to the reimbursement of expenses incurred in respect of services not normally granted to FAO Members without special payment."

This recommendation was supported by the Council at its Hundred and Seventh Session in November 1994. On the basis of the methodology recommended by the Finance Committee and supported by the Council, the Twenty-eighth Session of the Conference in 1995 had set the payment due for the 1996-1997 biennium at US$ 525 000.

151. On the basis of the same methodology, the Twenty-ninth Session of the Conference in 1997 had set the payment due for the 1998-1999 biennium at US$ 545 500. Using the same methodology and taking the cost increases at their average of 2.3 percent as used in the budget proposed by the Director-General in document C 99/3 after adjustment of the rate of exchange to reflect the expected rate of Lit. 1800 = US$ 1.00, the lump sum payment due by the EC to cover administrative and other expenses arising out of its membership in the Organization would be US$ 558 000 for the 2000-2001 biennium.

152. In view of the above, the Conference agreed to set the lump-sum payment due by the EC to cover administrative and other expenses arising out of its membership in the Organization at US$ 558 000 for the 2000-2001 biennium.

153. As for previous biennia, it was proposed that the sums paid by the EC in respect of administrative and other expenses should be paid into a Trust or Special Fund to be established by the Director-General under Regulation 6.7 of the Financial Regulations.

AFTER SERVICE MEDICAL COVERAGE40

154. The Conference adopted the following Resolution:

RESOLUTION 10/99
After Service Medical Coverage

THE CONFERENCE,

Having considered the report of the Hundred and Fifteenth Session of the Council,

Having noted the unfunded liability for past services,

Having noted that the Separation Payments Scheme and the Staff Compensation Plan have achieved fully funded status and that the Audited Accounts at 31 December 1997 show that the book value of related investments exceeds the liabilities,

Approves the following plan of action:

  1. Any income generated from the investments held in respect of the Separation Payments Scheme and Staff Compensation Plan be applied as originally foreseen to ensure the adequacy of those funds to extinguish the respective liabilities.
  2. Should there be an excess in the investment income of the Separation Payments Scheme and Staff Compensation Plan over the requirements for these funds then this should in principle be earmarked for the After Service Medical Coverage liability for past services.
  3. Following the past practice to establish separate funds for after service benefits, the investments in the Separation Payments Scheme and the Staff Compensation Plan exceeding the liabilities be earmarked for an After Service Medical Coverage Fund.

(Adopted on 23 November 1999)

ADDRESS BY A STAFF REPRESENTATIVE41

155. The General Secretary of the Union of General Service Staff (UGSS) spoke on behalf of the three Staff Representative Bodies highlighting the concerns of the staff about downsizing and career prospects as a result of the financial constraints of the Organization and indicating their willingness to participate in providing input into human resources management plans. In addition, the General Secretary also expressed concern about the security of UN staff.

 

APPOINTMENTS AND ELECTIONS

APPLICATIONS FOR MEMBERSHIP IN THE ORGANIZATION42

156. The Conference had before it applications for membership from the following countries:

- Republic of Kiribati;
- Republic of the Marshall Islands;
- Niue;
- Republic of Palau;
- Republic of San Marino.

These applications were supplemented by the formal instrument required under Article II of the Constitution, and were thus found to be in order.

157. The applications from the Republic of the Marshall Islands, Niue, the Republic of Palau and the Republic of San Marino had been submitted within the time limit prescribed by Rule XIX GRO. The application from the Republic of Kiribati had arrived after the aforementioned time limit, but the Conference decided to waive the time limit, in accordance with Rule XLVIII.1 GRO.

158. The Conference proceeded to a secret ballot on the applications from the Republic of the Marshall Islands, Niue, the Republic of Palau and the Republic of San Marino at its second plenary meeting on Friday 12 November 1999, in accordance with Article II-2 of the Constitution and Rule XII-9 GRO. The application from the Republic of Kiribati was voted on, by secret ballot, at its sixth plenary meeting on Monday 15 November 1999. The results were as follows:

Admission of Niue
  1. Number of ballots deposited 135
  2. Defective ballots 0
  3. Abstentions 9
  4. Number of votes cast 126
  5. Majority required 84
  6. Votes for 126
  7. Votes against 0
Admission of the Marshall Islands
  1. Number of ballots deposited 135
  2. Defective ballots 0
  3. Abstentions 9
  4. Number of votes cast 132
  5. Majority required 89
  6. Votes for 132
  7. Votes against 0
Admission of the Republic of Palau
  1. Number of ballots deposited 135
  2. Defective ballots 1
  3. Abstentions 10
  4. Number of votes cast 124
  5. Majority required 83
  6. Votes for 123
  7. Votes against 1
Admission of the Republic of San Marino
  1. Number of ballots deposited 135
  2. Defective ballots 0
  3. Abstentions 12
  4. Number of votes cast 123
  5. Majority required 82
  6. Votes for 123
  7. Votes against 0
Admission of the Republic of Kiribati
  1. Number of ballots deposited 122
  2. Defective ballots 0
  3. Abstentions 3
  4. Number of votes cast 119
  5. Majority required 80
  6. Votes for 119
  7. Votes against 0

 

159. The Conference accordingly admitted the aforementioned applicant countries to membership of the Organization.

160. The Conference decided that, according to established principles and customs, the contribution due for the last quarter of 1999 and the advance to be made to the Working Capital Fund by each country was as follows:

 

Contribution – Last quarter
(US$)

Working Capital Fund Advance
(US$)

Kiribati, Republic of

797.99

250.00

Marshall Islands, Republic of the

797.99

250.00

Niue

797.99

250.00

Palau, Republic of

797.99

250.00

San Marino, Republic of

1,595.75

500.00

APPOINTMENT OF THE DIRECTOR-GENERAL43

161. The Conference had before it two nominations for the Office of Director-General. After a secret ballot, the Conference appointed Mr Jacques Diouf (Senegal) to the Office of Director-General for a period of six years, from 1 January 2000 to 31 December 2005.

162. Pursuant to Rule XXXVI-1(c) GRO, on the recommendation of the General Committee, the Conference adopted the following Resolution:

RESOLUTION 11/99
Appointment of the Director-General

THE CONFERENCE,

Acting in accordance with Article VII of the Constitution,

Having proceeded to a secret ballot as laid down in Rule XII of the General Rules of the Organization,

  1. Declares that Jacques Diouf is appointed to the office of Director-General, for a period of six years, from 1 January 2000, the term of office expiring on 31 December 2005; and

Having considered the recommendations regarding the conditions of appointment of the Director-General submitted by the General Committee in accordance with Rules X-2(j) and XXXVI-1(c) of the General Rules of the Organization,

  1. Resolves that the Director-General shall receive a gross annual salary of US$ 186 094 corresponding to a net base annual salary of US$ 126 494 at the dependency rate, or US$ 112 488 at the single rate and an annual post adjustment corresponding to US$ 1 264.94 for each multiplier point at the dependency rate, or US$ 1 124.88 at the single rate, payable in accordance with the provisions of the Organization governing the salary to staff members; that he shall receive a representation allowance at the rate of US$ 50 000 net per annum; that in addition the Organization will directly rent appropriate housing accommodation to be assigned as the official residence of the Director-General and pay related expenses, in lieu of a rental subsidy; and that he shall be entitled to all other allowances and benefits accruing to staff members of the Organization in the Professional and Higher Categories;

  2. Further resolves that the Director-General shall not be a participant in the United Nations Joint Staff Pension Fund and that, in lieu thereof, he shall be entitled to receive, in monthly instalments, the equivalent of the Organization’s contribution to the Fund that would have been payable had he been a participant, as a supplement to his monthly remuneration; and

  3. Further resolves that the terms and conditions of appointment of the Director-General shall be governed by the relevant provisions of the Staff Regulations subject, however, to the provisions of the contract to be signed by the Chairman of the Conference on behalf of the Organization and by the Director-General elect, in accordance with Rule XXXVI-1(c).

(Adopted on 17 November 1999)

ELECTION OF MEMBERS AND INDEPENDENT CHAIRMAN OF THE COUNCIL44

Election of Council Members45

163. The Conference elected Burkina Faso to the Council seat for the Africa Region for the outstanding period November 1999 to November 2001.

164. The Conference then elected the following Member Nations as Members of the Council:

Period November 1999 to 31 December 2002

REGION (SEATS)

MEMBERS

Africa (4)

Ethiopia
Lesotho
Mauritania
Senegal

Asia (3)

India
Malaysia
Pakistan

Europe (4)

France
Iceland
Italy
United Kingdom

Latin America and the Caribbean (1)

Guatemala

Near East (3)

Egypt
Saudi Arabia, Kingdom of
Syria

North America

None

South West Pacific (1)

Australia

  Period 1 January 2001 to November 2003

REGION (SEATS)

MEMBERS

Africa (3)

Cameroon
Kenya
Zimbabwe

Asia (6)

China
Japan
Korea, Republic of
Philippines
Sri Lanka
Thailand

Europe (3)

Cyprus
Czech Republic
Germany

Latin America and the Caribbean (3)

Argentina
Chile
Peru

Near East (1)

Iran, Islamic Republic of

North America

None

South West Pacific

None

Appointment of Independent Chairman of the Council46

165. The Conference had before it one nomination for the office of Independent Chairman of the Council.

166. The Conference, after a secret ballot, appointed Sjarifudin Baharsjah to the office of Independent Chairman of the Council and adopted the following Resolution:

RESOLUTION 12/99
Appointment of the Independent Chairman of the Council

THE CONFERENCE,

Having proceeded to a secret ballot, in accordance with the provisions of Rule XII of the General Rules of the Organization:

  1. Declares that Sjarifudin BAHARSJAH is appointed Independent Chairman of the Council for a period of two years, that is, until the end of the regular session of the Conference to be held in 2001;

  2. Decides that the conditions of appointment, including the allowances attached to the office of the Independent Chairman of the Council, shall be as follows:
  1. An annual allowance of the equivalent of US$ 22 000 to cover the representation expenses and secretarial assistance in the Chairman's home station, on the understanding that the Director-General will provide secretarial assistance when the Chairman attends sessions of the Council or Conference; one-half of the allowance shall be payable in US dollars, the balance being payable, in whole or in part, in the currency of the home station of the Chairman, or in Italian lire, according to his desires;

  2. a per diem allowance at a rate equivalent to that for the Deputy Director-General, while the Chairman is absent from his home station on Council business;

  3. Travel expenses, including the above per diem allowance, shall be defrayed by the Organization, in conformity with its regulations and existing practice, when the Chairman attends sessions of the Council, of the Programme and Finance Committees, of the Conference, or when he is invited by the Council or by the Director-General to travel for other purposes.

(Adopted on 22 November 1999)

APPOINTMENT OF REPRESENTATIVES OF THE FAO CONFERENCE TO THE STAFF PENSION COMMITTEE47

167. In accordance with Article 6(c) of the Regulations of the UN Joint Staff Pension Fund, the Conference appointed two members and two alternate members to the Staff Pension Committee for the periods specified as follows:

For the period 1 January 2000 - 31 December 2002
Member Ms Korntip Ratanakomut
Deputy Permanent Representative of Thailand to FAO
Alternate Member Mr Gaspard Kabura
First Counsellor
Embassy of the Republic of Burundi
For the period 1 January 2001 - 31 December 2003
Member Mr Don Juan Borg Gil
Minister Counsellor
Embassy of the Dominican Republic
Alternate Member His Excellency Souhaib Deen Bangoura
Permanent Representative of the Republic of Guinea to FAO

 

OTHER MATTERS

DATE AND PLACE OF THE THIRTY-FIRST CONFERENCE SESSION48

168. The Conference decided that its Thirty-first Session should be held in Rome from 2 to 13 November 2001.

FAO COMPLIANCE AGREEMENT AND REVISED TEXT OF THE INTERNATIONAL PLANT PROTECTION CONVENTION49

169. In considering the Statutory Report to the Conference on "Multilateral Treaties deposited with the Director-General", the Conference emphasized the importance of an early entry into force of the Agreement to Promote Compliance with International Conservation and Management Measures by Fishing Vessels in the High Seas, approved by the Conference at its Twenty-seventh Session, in November 1993, and the Revised Text of the International Plant Protection Convention, approved by the Conference, at its Twenty-ninth Session in November 1997.

170. Consequently, the Conference adopted the following Resolution:

RESOLUTION 13/99
FAO Compliance Agreement and Revised Text of the International Plant Protection Convention

THE CONFERENCE,

Recalling that under the terms of Article XIV.1 of the FAO Constitution the Conference or the Council may approve and submit to Member Nations conventions and agreements concerning questions relating to food and agriculture,

Recalling, in particular, its approval of the International Plant Protection Convention under Article XIV of the FAO Constitution at its Sixth Session in 1951, which Convention came into force on 3 April 1952, and the adoption of a set of amendments to that Convention at its Twenty-ninth Session in 1997,

Recalling that, in accordance with Article XIII.4 of the Convention, the amendments will enter into force as from the thirtieth day after their acceptance by two-thirds of the Contracting Parties and that, to date, only eight countries have accepted the Revised Text of the Convention,

Recalling also its approval of the Agreement to Promote Compliance with International Conservation and Management Measures by Fishing Vessels on the High Seas, at its Twenty-seventh Session in 1993,

Noting that, in accordance with its Article XI.1, the Agreement will enter into force as from the date of receipt by the Director-General of the twenty-fifth instrument of acceptance and that, notwithstanding its importance, to date only fifteen countries have accepted the Agreement:

  1. Requests FAO Members and eligible Non-Members of FAO that have not yet done so, to consider the International Plant Protection Convention, with a view to depositing an instrument of adherence thereto;

  2. Requests the Contracting Parties of the International Plant Protection Convention to consider the amendments to the Convention, adopted by Conference Resolution 12/97 of 17 November 1997, with a view to accepting them, and thereby bringing the Revised Text of the Convention into force as soon as possible;

  3. Requests FAO Members and eligible Non-Members of FAO to consider the Agreement to Promote Compliance with International Conservation and Management Measures by Fishing Vessels on the High Seas with a view to accepting it, and thereby bringing the Agreement into force as soon as possible.

(Adopted on 23 November 1999)

________________________________________________________

26. C 99/LIM/8; C 99/PV/12; C 99/PV/15

27. C 99/LIM/13; C 99/PV/12; C 99/PV/15

28. CL 117/REP, para 61

29. CL 117/4, paras 40-42

30. CL 115/5

31. CL 115/REP, paras 88- 89

32. C 99/LIM/9; CL 116/REP; C 99/PV/3; C 99/PV/15

33.C 99/LIM/17; C 99/PV/11; C 99/PV/15

34. C 99/LIM/18; C 99/PV/11; C 99/PV/15

35. C 99/LIM/19; C 99/PV/11; C 99/PV/15

36. C 99/LIM/20; C 99/PV/11; C 99/PV/15

37. C 99/5; C 99/LIM/10; C 99/PV/14; C 99/PV/15

38. C 99/LIM/11; C 99/LIM/11-Corr.1; C 99/LIM/26; C 99/PV/13; C 99/PV/15

39. C 99/LIM/24; C 99/PV/15

40. C 99/LIM/12; C 99/PV/14; C 99/PV/15

41. C 99/PV/14; C 99/PV/15

42. C 99/10; C 99/10-Sup.1; C 99/10-Sup.2; C 99/PV/2; C 99/PV/6; C 99/PV/15

43. C 99/18; C 99/LIM/24; C 99/PV/3; C 99/PV/15

44. C 99/11; C 99/19; C 99/19-Corr.1; C 99/19-Corr.2; C 99/LIM/15; C 99/LIM/23; C 99/PV/12; C/99/PV15

45. C 99/11; C 99/LIM/23; C 99/PV/12; C 99/PV/15

46. C 99/19; C 99/19-Corr.1; C 99/19-Corr.2; C 99/LIM/15; C 99/LIM/28; C 99/PV/12; C 99/PV/15

47. C 99/17; C 99/PV/14; C 99/PV/15

48. C 99/PV/14; C 99/PV/15

49. C 99/LIM/29; C 99/PV/14; C 99/PV/15

 



APPENDIX A

AGENDA FOR THE THIRTIEH SESSION OF THE CONFERENCE


INTRODUCTION AND REVIEW OF THE STATE OF FOOD AND AGRICULTURE

1. Election of Chairperson and Vice-Chairpersons

2. Appointment of General Committee and Credentials Committee

3. Adoption of the Agenda and Arrangements for the Session

4. Admission of Observers

5. Review of the State of Food and Agriculture

PART I - SUBSTANTIVE AND POLICY MATTERS

6. Progress on Follow-up to the World Food Summit

7. Gender Mainstreaming in FAO

8. International Undertaking on Plant Genetic Resources for Food and Agriculture

9. United Nations/FAO World Food Programme

10. Outcome of the FAO/Netherlands Conference on the Multi-Functional Character of Agriculture and Land (Maastricht, Netherlands, September 1999)

11. Outcome of the Conference of Plenipotentiaries on the Rotterdam Convention on Prior Informed Consent (PIC)

PART II - PROGRAMME AND BUDGETARY MATTERS

12. Programme Implementation Report 1996-97

13. Programme Evaluation Report 1998-99

14. Programme of Work and Budget 2000-2001

15. Strategic Framework 2000-2015

PART III - LEGAL AND ADMINISTRATIVE MATTERS

16. Amendments to the Basic Texts of the Organization

  16.1 General Rules of the Organization
  16.2 Financial Regulations

17. Amendments to the General Regulations and Rules of WFP

18. Other Constitutional and Legal Matters

  18.1 Cooperation Agreement between FAO and the Intergovernmental Organization for Marketing Information and Cooperation Services for Fishery Products in Africa (INFOPÊCHE)
  18.2 Cooperation Agreement between FAO and the Lake Victoria Fisheries Organization (LVFO)
  18.3 Cooperation Agreement between FAO and the Centre for Marketing Information and Advisory Services for Fishery Products in Latin America and the Caribbean (INFOPESCA)
  18.4 Use of Gender Neutral Language in the Basic Texts

19. FAO Audited Accounts 1996-97

20. Scale of Contributions 2000-2001

21. Payment by the European Community to Cover Expenses Arising out of its Membership in the Organization

22. Other Administrative and Financial Matters

  22.1 After Service Medical Coverage

PART IV - APPOINTMENTS AND ELECTIONS

23. Applications for Membership in the Organization

24. Appointment of the Director-General

25. Election of Council Members and Independent Chairman

26. Appointment of Representatives of the FAO Conference to the Staff Pension Committee

PART V - OTHER MATTERS

27. Date and Place of the Thirty-first Conference Session

28. Any Other Matters

  28.1 McDougall Memorial Lecture
  28.2 Presentation of B.R. Sen Awards
  28.3 Presentation of A.H. Boerma Award
  28.4 Presentation of Edouard Saouma Award
  28.5 Margarita Lizárraga Medal
  28.6 In Memoriam

 


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