Joint Meeting of the
Rome, 11 May 2005
Savings and Efficiencies in Governance
1. At its Hundred and Twenty-fourth Session in June 2003, the Council agreed to hold three Round Tables during the Thirty-second Session of the Conference. The objective of the Round Tables was to complement the General Debate and to provide an opportunity for Heads of Delegations to discuss a topic of strategic importance in an interactive manner.
2. Three Round Tables were then held during the Thirty-second Session of the Conference, with extensive high-level participation.
3. The Joint Meeting of the Programme and Finance Committees in September 2004 reviewed the paper prepared by the Secretariat1 regarding the format, conduct, and outcome of the Round Tables convened during the Thirty-second Session of the Conference, while the Joint Meeting in May 2005 decided to proceed to a detailed analysis of the modalities concerning the holding of the Round Tables at the Thirty-third Session of the Conference.
4. For the Thirty-third Session of the Conference in November 2005, it is proposed that, like for the Thirty-second session, three Round Tables be held. However, on this occasion, and bearing in mind the shorter Conference period of seven as opposed to the former nine days, the Round Tales could be merged with three planned special events on food security and sustainable development in Small Island Developing States, water and agriculture in Africa and Small Island Developing States, and women. Such events would be open to countries and international organizations invited to the FAO Conference.
5. Given the extent of the interest of FAO Members and their participation in the Round Tables during the 2003 Session of the Conference, it is also proposed that the Round Table format followed on that occasion become a regular feature of FAO Conferences as of 2007.
6. In this connection, the Secretariat will continue to study ways and means that will enable the Round Tables to become an even more interactive forum for discussion among the FAO Membership during future Conference sessions, and will prepare a paper to this effect for consideration by the Joint Meeting of the Programme and Finance Committee in May 2006.
7. The Joint Meeting of the Programme and Finance Committees in September 2004 also agreed that economies in the production of Verbatim Records should be the subject of a detailed analysis.
8. The Secretariat is currently studying various proposals regarding the production and use of Verbatim records. In so doing, it is also liaising with sister agencies regarding best practices employed by them. It is therefore proposed that the Secretariat prepare a detailed analysis, with proposals regarding cost-effective measures, for consideration by the Joint Meeting of the Programme and Finance Committees in May 2006.
1 JM 04.2/3