124. The Council reviewed the question of the format of the Medium-Term Objectives and Programme of Work and Budget documents in the light of proposals made by the Programme and Finance Committees respectively at their Forty-third and Fiftieth Sessions in September 1982. An examination of possible improvements had been requested by the last sessions of the Conference and Council in November 1981, in order to achieve further savings in documentation costs, and facilitate the consideration of these essential documents.
125. The Programme and Finance Committees had reviewed several possible options and agreed to recommended the following measures:
(a) to merge the Medium-Term Objectives and Programme of Work and Budget documents, by incorporating sections dealing with the medium-term context in the Programme of Work and Budget;
(b) to streamline the current format of the Programme of Work and Budget as follows:
(i) a new synoptic table to be placed at the beginning of each programme narrative, which would combine information previously shown in two separate tables, and would provide a clearer indication of programme changes at the sub-programme level,
(ii) the standard tables on posts contained in Appendix C of the current Programme of Work and Budget to be replaced by more useful and aggregated information, as determined by the Finance Committee at its Forty-ninth and Fiftieth Sessions,
(iii) to retain the standard tables budget estimates by Region, Fund and Unit, although some of their content duplicated information available elsewhere.
126. The Council fully endorsed the proposals and agreed that they would greatly facilitate discussion of the Programme of Work add Budget, while achieving savings in documentation costs and discussion time. It decided nevertheless that the tables in Appendix C should be retained. The Council further agreed that the merger of the Medium- Term Objectives and Programme of Work and Budget documents would not result in any loss of information, that continued attention would be given to presenting the biennial Programme of Work and Budget in its medium-term context, and the importance of medium- term planning was not compromised.
127. The Council also noted that these new measures would not entail material difficulties, in the context of the United Nations System, to ensure the needed exchange of information between organizations on their programme planning documents.
128. The Council was informed of the status of contributions at 30 November 1982, compared to the same date in 1981, as follows, as well as the details of outstanding contributions of Member Nations shown in Appendix F to this Report.
|Amounts outstanding at 1 January||$||$|
|Current assessments||177 690 000.00||137 287 900.00|
|Contributions in arrears||15 063 604.59||22 163 610.86|
|Total||192 753 604 59||159 451 510.86|
|Receipts 1 January to 30 November|
|Current assessments||142 055 767.77||119 919 992.16|
|Contributions in arrears||8 373 558.93||18 983 893.76|
|Total||150 429 326.70||138 903 885.92 c|
|Amounts outstanding at 30 November|
|Current assessments||35 634 232.23 d||17 367 907.84|
|Contributions in arrears||6 690 045.66 d||3 179 717.10|
|Total||42 324 277.89||20 547 624.94|
129. The Council noted that the cumulative percentages of collected during each month of 1982, as compared to collections years, were as follows:
|Percentages of Current Assessments Collected (Cumulative)|
|1982||l98l 3||1980||l979 3||1978||19773|
130. The Council noted with serious concern that compared with 1981, a further significant deterioration in the rate of receipt of contributions from Member Nations had taken place during 1982, and in fact had been the worst in the history of the Organization. While several Member Nations, in particular Cameroon, Germany (Federal Republic of), and Lebanon, had advised the Organization that their contributions should be received shortly, the amounts could not yet be included as collected.
131. The Council was informed that the deterioration in contributions received applied not only to the overall rate, of receipts, but also to the number of Member Nations which had not fulfilled their financial obligations to the Organization. The position at 30 November 1982 of Member payments of current year’s assessments (and arrears), as compared to the five prior years, was as follows:
|Number of Member Nations|
|Paid in full||Part Paid||No Payment||Total||Arrears|
|1981 4 5||88||43||21||152||18|
|1979 4 5||94||30||23||147||17|
|1977 4 5||85||37||22||144||17|
132. The Council noted that the financial position in December 1982 was less worrying than it had been earlier in 1982, and was relieved that the Director-General would not need to exercise his authority to borrow. The Council was informed however, that the Director-General would have no hesitation to borrow in 1983 if Member Governments were late with their contributions and if funds were needed to meet the Organization’s obligations,
133. The Council agreed with the view of the Finance Committee that the late receipt of contributions had major adverse financial consequences for the Organization and, more importantly, for Member Nations as a whole.
134. Drawings from the Working Capital Fund and the Special Reserve Account, if required. to cover budgeted expenditure, would drastically reduce interest income. In addition, should funds need to be borrowed, related interest charges would further reduce Miscellaneous Income. Since all Member Nations were entitled to share in the benefits of Miscellaneous Income, as provided for in the Basic Texts, regardless of the timing of payment of their assessed contributions, those who paid promptly were deprived of their full share of potential returns by those who paid late.
135. In this connection, the Council noted that if Miscellaneous Income were to fall below the figure included in the calculation of assessed contributions on Member Nations to finance 1982-83 budgetary appropriations, it could lead to an additional assessment on Member Nations during 1983.
136. The Council noted that the Director-General had informed all Member Nations in December 1981 of the amount of their assessed contributions to the 1982 budget and had sent communications each calendar quarter to every Member Nation with balances outstanding, requesting payment of amounts due. In addition he had intensified his efforts to collect assessed contributions through meetings with Permanent Representatives to FAO in Rome , through FAO Representatives and, for instance, during Regional Conferences. The Council acknowledged these special efforts of the Director-General and endorsed the actions as suggested by the Finance Committee.
137. The Council recalled that all Member Nations were equally bound to pay assessments when due, an obligation undertaken on joining the Organization. In accordance with the Basic Texts, Member Nations were committed to pay assessed contributions not later than 30 days after the receipt of the Director-General’s communication informing them of assessments due.
138. In view of the foregoing, the Council requested all Member Nations to effect promptly remittances of their 1983 assessments. The Council strongly appealed to those Member Nations which were not honouring their financial obligations to the Organization, in accordance with the terms of the Basic Texts, to assume their fair share of the financial support of the Organization by paying promptly and in full, both outstanding and future assessments. The Council also urged Member Nations to inform the Organization of the timing within which amounts due would be received.
139. The Council noted with concern that the number of Member Nations (38) with arrears currently outstanding, relating to 1981 and prior years, was nearly twice as many as in previous years. This trend was highly unsatisfactory. While recognizing the very difficult financial problems some of those Member Nations faced in meeting these obligations, the Council appealed to all Member Nations concerned to make every possible effort to effect payment of their arrears, totalling $6 690 045.66, without further delay.
140. In this connection, the Council was informed that the Government of Iran had advised the Director-General that it would remit in early 1983 an amount of $2 100 000.00, significantly reducing its outstanding obligations to the Organization.
141. The Council was informed that two applications for membership in the Organization had been received, from Antigua and Barbuda , and from Beliae, to be considered by the Twenty-second Session of the Conference. At the time of its decision on applications, the Conference would call upon each Government to pay a first contribution relating to the last quarter of 1983, as provided for in the Basic Texts. The Council noted that the 1981-82 United assessment rate for each Government was 0.01 percent, the minimum, and the same minimum rate would also apply for FAO assessments. In accordance with past practice, the Council recommended that the amount of this first contribution be $4 400. Each Government would also be requested to advance $1 325 to the Working Capital Fund.
142. The Council was informed of the status at 30 November 1982 of receipts of amounts due as Advances to the Working Capital Fund, arising from the increase in the level of the Fund from $6 500 000 to $13 250 000 and reassessment thereof, effective 1 January 1982, as decided by the Twenty-first Session of the Conference 6:
|Amounts due at 1 January 1982||$ 6 933 182.00|
|Application from Cash Surplus of 1980-81 biennium, in accordance with Resolution 18/81||$3 091 119.00|
|Cash receipts 1 January through 30 November 1982||1 443 770.00||4 534 889.00|
|$ 2 398 293.00 7|
143. The Council, recalling that Financial Regulation 5.5 provided that Advances to the Working Capital Fund were due and payable in full within 30 days of the receipt of the communication of the Director-General informing Member Nations of their obligations, and being aware that the Director-General had informed Member Nations by a communication dated 14 July 1982 both of applications to the Fund from the cash surplus of the 1980-81 biennium and of the balances due to the Fund, urged Member Nations to remit promptly amounts which remained outstanding.
144. In reviewing the above accounts, the Council noted with satisfaction the generally positive evaluation by the External Auditor and the prompt action taken by the Organization to remedy those weaknesses identified. It endorsed the External Auditor’s recommendations and the comments of the Finance Committee.
145. With regard to the review of the Office of Internal Audit and Inspection, the Council noted with satisfaction the External Auditor’s conclusion that the work methods and activities of the Office met the high standard demanded by modern professional auditing practice for an effective internal audit and that the importance attached by the Director-General to the work of Internal Audit had greatly strengthened its effectiveness within the Organization. It also noted that a review of the staffing of the Office of Internal Audit and Inspection would be carried out in the context of the preparation of the 1984-85 Programme of Work and Budget.
146. The Council noted with satisfaction that the Information Systems and Resources Committee, responsible for general policy and approval of major projects in respect of computer installations and systems was now in operation. Its supporting Standing Committee of technical experts was also meeting on a regular basis.
147. With regard to the computerized purchasing system, most of the recommendations concerning installation and application controls had been implemented and action on the rest of the recommendations had been initiated.
148. With regard to the Technical Cooperation Programme (TCP) field projects, the Council noted with satisfaction the positive overall assessment contained in the External Auditor’s report, which was based on a thorough investigation of. a sizeable number of projects in two major geographic regions. It agreed with the External Auditor on the need to provide more information to Governments concerning the philosophy, the criteria and the procedures for TCP, so as to facilitate the preparation of requests by Governments and to avoid unnecessary delays in project approval and implementation. The FAO Representative should play an important role in this respect, or where there was no FAO Representative the UNDP Resident Representative.
149. The Council recommended that, given the limited resources available to the Technical Cooperation Programme, priority be given to the least developed countries.
150. With regard to the UNDP project for Accelerated Development of Cotton Production in an Asian Country, the Council noted that a project extension had been approved to complete the compilation and analyses of economic data required for a potential loan from the World Bank; to review and establish the marketing arrangements; and to ensure the smooth handover to the government authorities. It expressed concern about the length of time taken to assess the economic viability of this project, and the potential waste of resources that could arise from such delays.
151. The Council forwarded the above audited accounts to the Conference in accordance with the provisions of Rule XXIV.3(b) of the General Rules of the Organization and recommended the following draft Resolution for adoption by the Conference:
DRAFT RESOLUTION FOR THE CONFERENCE
Having considered the report of the Eighty-second Session of the Council,
Having examined the following audited accounts and the External Auditor’s Reports thereon:
|Regular Programme 1980-81||C 83/5|
|United Nations Development Programme 1981||C 83/6|
|World Food Programme 1981||C 83/7|
Adopts the above audited accounts.
152. The Council endorsed the recommendations of the Finance Committee, as made in the Committee's reports of its Forty-ninth and Fiftieth Session. The Council also noted developments since its Eightieth Session and heard a review of this long-standing problem as it had evolved from the time the Organization moved to Rome in 1951.
153. The Council agreed in particular with the recommendation of the Finance Committee to construct, as a permanent solution to the Headquarters accommodation problem a new wing adjacent to building C and 70 rooms on the eighth floor of building D.
154. As regards developments since its Eightieth Session, the Council was informed that, despite further steps taken recently by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, there had been no concrete progress in connection with the construction of 70 rooms on the eighth floor of building D. In this connecti6n, the Representative of the Host Government announced that there had been some progress, in that the Ministry of Public Works had now completed its evaluation of the project and had forwarded the file to the Administration of the Regione Lazio for their review. As far as progress on the proposal to construct a new wing was concerned, the Council noted that the exploratory excavations undertaken by the Organization in consultation with the Superintendency of Archaeology had been completed, and that it would appear that no archaeological remains of importance that could impede the project had been found. The report of the Superintendency was expected during December 1982. The Council further noted with satisfaction the encouraging indications of the Italian Authorities’ willingness to consider the implementation of the project, taking into account however the very strict archaeological and urbanistic limitations which apply in particular to the Caracalla zone of Rome. The Municipality of Rome (Comune di Roma) had submitted a rough sketch of the building structures which could be taken as a basis for the preparation of the architectural designs.
155. The Council acknowledged the generosity of the Italian Government in having made available from time to time additional premises to the Organization since its transfer to Rome in 1951, and welcomed the announced increase in the voluntary contribution of the government by 50 percent, from 300 million lire to 450 million lire, for 1982. The Council nevertheless expressed serious preoccupation at the continuing waste of resources and loss of efficiency through the continuing split of the Headquarters’ units in two locations as well as the deteriorated status of the (prefabricated) building E, which had outlived its life and was now in need of urgent major repairs. The urgency of carrying out such repairs would soon force the Organization to vacate the building and rent accommodation outside until the repairs were completed.
156. The Council requested that the matter be brought to the Council. of Ministers of the Italian Government with a view to obtaining all necessary Government decisions, including legislative action as may be necessary, for the earliest possible implementation of the constructions proposed. In this connection, the Council requested the Director-General to seek the necessary appointments for himself and the Working Party appointed by the Conference (‘Resolution 14/81) with the President of the Council of Ministers and the Minister of Foreign Affairs, and convey to them the desire of the FAO Council for early approval by the Council of Ministers itself of the construction projects, including their financing and a concrete time-table for their implementation.
157. The Council welcomed the indications by the delegate of the Host Governr-eflt that steps would be taken as soon as possible, to arrange through the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, appointments for the Director-General and the Working Party appointed by the Conference with the President of the Council of Ministers.
158. The Council requested that in view of its importance and urgency the subject of “Headquarters Accommodation” be kept as an item on the agenda of future Council sessions until such time as assurances were given of a satisfactory solution and it reiterated its thanks and appreciation for the continued generosity of the Italian Government and its support towards the execution of the proposed projects.
159. The Council noted that the Programme Committee, in accordance with its mandate, as stated in General Rule XXVI, to review the current activities of the Organization and to advise the Council on the long-term programme objectives of the Organization, had reviewed at its Forty-second Session Major Programmes 2.1.1 Natural Resources, 2.1.2 Crops, 2.1.3 Livestock, 2.1.4 Research Support, and 2.1.5 Rural Development, and that at its Forty- third Session it had reviewed 1.1.1 Conference and Council, 1.1.2 Conference Services, 1.2 Policy, Direction and Planning, 1.3 Legal, 1.4.1 Inter-Agency Affairs, 1.4.2 Liaison and Protocol, 5.1.1 Public Information, 5.1.2 Library, 5.1.3 Documentation Systems and 5.1.4 Publications. The Council recalled that this review had been carried out in accordance with the four-year cycle for 1982 and 1984 which had been agreed by the Council at its Seventy-eighth Session in 1980.
160. The Council noted that this review had been thorough and that it had examined activities down to the sub-programme level. It accordingly paid tribute to the valuable contribution which the Programme Committee made to the work of the Council in this respect.
161. Specific mention was made of the number of comments which had been made by the Programme Committee with regard to a variety of activities and subjects which had been reviewed, including food production, food processing, olive production, rural populations, desert locusts, animal disease control, strengthening of national research systems, the role of FAO Liaison Offices, the Library and publications in general. The Council generally agreed with the comments of the. Programme Committee on these and other subjects covered in the review.
162. The Council noted that in addition to the background documents used in the review, i.e. the Programme of Work and Budget, the Reviews of the Regular and Field Programmes, and Medium-Term Objectives, detailed and specific information and explanations had been provided to satisfy the needs of the Committee.
163. Some members felt that the functions of the Council regarding the review of the current activities of the Organizations, the Summary and draft Programme of Work and Budget for the ensuing biennium and the long-term programme objectives of the Organization were not being adequately fulfilled and that improvements should be considered. They also felt that the work of the Council could be better organized so that the review undertaken by the Programme Committee received fuller consideration, particularly with regard to the allocations for different programmes and the implementation of the approved Programme of Work and Budget. Such an examination in non-Conference years would permit the Council to advise the Conference even more effectively on the proposed Programme of Work and Budget for the ensuing biennium.
164. Some members appreciated the intent of these suggestions. While considering that the Council could not deal with the matter at its current session, they felt that the suggestions merited study in a constructive spirit.
165. The Council agreed that the Programme Committee fulfilled its matidate to the satisfaction of the Council, and appreciated its valuable contribution to the work of the Council. The majority of members concluded that the present procedures and practices of the Programme Committee and of the Council gave full and ample opportunity at appropriate times for review of the current and future programmes and activities of the Organization. It was also recalled that while the Programme Committee had a function to review the current activities of the Organization, neither it nor the Council had authority to question or suggest the reallocation of resources as approved by the Conference. In this connection, it was noted that the Programme Committee, Council and Conference had reached a consensus on the validity of the policies and programmes and on the Organization’s efficiency in implementing them. The implementation of the approved Programme of Work and Budget was the clear and undisputed responsibility of the Director-General. The four-year cycle of programme reviews undertaken by the Programme Committee was designed to enhance the capacity of the Committee to advise the Council when it considered the Summary and draft Programme of Work and Budget for the ensuing biennium. The Council expressed its full satisfaction with the role fulfilled by the Programme Committee in this regard.
166. The Council noted that the priorities and strategies of the Organization were based on the recommendations of a large number of bodies covering the entire spectrum of the activities of the Organization on both the technical and geographic bases. These included the Committees of the Council, such as the Committee on Agriculture, the Committee on Fisheries, the Committee on Forestry, the Committee on Commodity Problems, The Committee on World Food Security, as well as the biennial Regional Conferences, United Nations Economic and Social Council (ECOSOC), the General Assembly and a wide range of specific technical bodies.
167. The Council accordingly concluded that the present procedures and practices were adequate and did not need to be changed at this time.
168. The Council considered two aspects regarding the World Fisheries Conference which had been examined by the Programme Committee at its Forty-third Session - the timing of the two phases of the Conference and the participation in the Conference.
169. The Council endorsed the recommendations of the Programme Committee that the technical preparatory phase should be constituted by an extended Fifteenth Session of the Committee on Fisheries, which should be rescheduled from May to October 1983, and that the policy phase of the Conference should be held around May 1984. In this latter regard, attention was drawn to the need for the Director-General to be afforded sufficient flexibility in deciding the actual dates on the basis of all relevant factors. The Council also noted that the holding of the final phase of the Conference in 1984 would necessitate the inclusion of the relevant operating costs in the Programme of Work and Budget for the 1984-85 biennium, which at this stage could be estimated at some $600 000.
170. The Council also endorsed the recommendation of the Programme Committee that the Conference itself should be open to all States Members of FAO, the United Nations, any of its Specialized Agencies, or the International Atomic Energy Agency. The Council agreed that the European Economic Community (EEC) should be able to participate adequately in the discussions of the Conference.
171. The Council noted with satisfaction the steps already taken by the Director-General in preparing for the World Fisheries Conference in close consultation with member countries and indicated its appreciation for document CL 82/LIM/3 which it considered to be a useful synthesis of the views expressed at the 1982 Regional Conference. It endorsed the suggestions made at these Regional Conferences regarding the scope, objectives, priority issues and anticipated outcomes of the World Fisheries Conference. In particular, the Council agreed that the Conference should concern itself not only with the practical implementation of the new regime of the oceans with respect to fisheries but also with inland water fisheries and aquaculture. The Council agreed that the priority issues summarized in document CL 82/LIM/3 might serve as a basis for the drafting of a provisional agenda for the Conference. It was emphasized that the Conference should not deal with issues already settled at the United Nations Conference on the Law of the Sea nor, in view of the wide diversity of conditions, should it attempt to draw up model agreements for bilateral arrangements in fisheries. Particular importance was also placed upon the need to ensure the rational management and full utilization of fish resources in exclusive economic zones and upon the role fisheries can play in promoting national self-sufficiency in food and in rural development. The Council noted with appreciation the offer of Norway to host an expert consultation to examine these latter issues.
172. The Council, noting the importance attached to the World Fisheries Conference by Member Nations, invited the Director-General to continue his consultations with governments in the further careful preparation of the Conference and requested that it be provided at its next session with a draft Agenda for the Conference.
173. The Council fully endorsed the views expressed by the Programme and Finance Committees which had conducted an in-depth review of the subject. The Council expressed concern at the concentration of recruitment of consultants from a few countries and felt that a better balance needed to be established between different groups of countries.
174. The Council reiterated its support of the concept of positive discrimination, as a means of alleviating this situation, whereby preferential treatment would be given to equally qualified candidates from developing countries. It also supported the views that more local consultants should be used and that in this regard a usefui. role could be played by FAO Representatives, Regional Offices and Permanent Representatives of member countries in Rome.
175. The Council noted that the financial position of the Separation Payments Fund, established to meet the Organization’s liabilities under the Scheme, had been reviewed by the Actuary. It further noted that in the light of the results of that review the Finance Committee had recommended the desirability of improving the coverage of the Organization’s liabilities under the Scheme.
176. The Council accordingly endorsed the Finance Committee’s recommendations that the existing funding coverage be amended as follows:
(i) Extra Budgetary Funds - adoption of a funding rate of 9.1 percent as of 1 July 1982; (ii) Regular Programme - adoption of a partial funding rate at 50 percent of the recommended rate of 11.28 percent; in addition 50 percent of all separation payments under the Regular Programme be charged to the annual budget.
177. The Council noted that with regard to the Regular Programme this would increase the cost from $2 484 000 to some $3 070 000 for the 1982-83 biennium. It concurred with the Finance Committee suggestion that a further Actuarial Review be made of the Fund in four years, and that an interim report be prepared after two years.
(i) Separation Payments
178. The Council reviewed the recommendation of the International Civil Service Commission (ICSC) that calculations for separation payments be made using gross salary adjusted by movements of Weighted Average of Post Adjustments index (WAPA), less staff assessment. It noted that this clarification had already been approved by the General Assembly of the United Nations at its Thirty-sixth Session (1981). The Council therefore approved with effect from 1 January 1983 a change in Staff Regulations 301.155 and 301.162 dealing respectively with terminatcrn indemnity and repatriation grant which would replace the present reference to pensionable remuneration less applicable staff assessment with the new provision of "gross salary adjusted by movements of the Weighted Average of Post Adjustment index (WAPA), less staff assessment".
179. The Council noted that the Director-General would be making similar amendments to the Staff Rules and FAO Manual with respect to death grant and commutation of annual leave.
(ii) Changes in Salaries and Allowances
180. The Council wa.s informed of further ICSC recommendations to the Thirty-seventh Session of the General Assembly of the United Nations (1982) with respect to increases in basic salaries and children’s allowance, as well as the provision for the payment of education grant for a maximum of one year to staff returning to serve in their home country after assignment elsewhere.
181. Noting that General Assembly action on the above recommendations was expected only after the FAO Council had concluded its Eighty-second Session, and in order not to deviate from the Common System, the Council authorized the Director-General to similarly amend the FAO Staff Regulations to give effect to the changes in these salaries and allowances as approved for the United Nations by the General Assembly.
182. To avoid future recurrences of this nature, the Council decided to authorize the Director-General at his discretion immediately to apply to staff in the Professional and higher categories (including the Deputy Director-General) any future recommendations of the ICSC approved by the General Assembly of the United Nati6ns, reporting his actions or reasons for not taking immediate action to the Finance Committee and, as necessary, to the Council. The Council noted that although action by the General Assembly on personnel matters did not require similar action on the part of FAO, not to do so would imply a deviation from the UN Common System.
(i) Staff Assessment
183. The Council approved the ICSC recommendations for a change in the rates and method to compute the staff assessment for General Service staff at Headquarters. This change would be effective with the first between-survey salary increase falling due after December 1982 and would require:
(i) The application of new scales of staff assessment as indicated below:
Gross Annual Salary
Staff Assessment Rates
By Income Bracket
(ii) The revised scale of staff assessment to be applied to the net salaries converted into US dollars from local currency amounts by the use of the 36-month average of exchange rates, rather than the one-month rate as under the current formula.
(iii) That gross (pensionable) salaries in local currency equivalents for staff on the rolls would not be reduced if re-calculated gross salaries were lower but would be frozen until surpassed as a result of subsequent further adjustments to the salary scales.
(ii) Dependency Allowances
184. The Council noted the revised ICSC methodology for the determinatiou of Children’s allowances at all duty stations, and how it affected the level of that allowance in Rome on 1 July 1982. It noted an earlier ICSC recommendation to develop an interim methodology for adjusting dependency allowances, on the basis of which the Director- General had developed criteria for application at Headquarters as contained in the Report of the Forty-ninth Session of the Finance Committee. 16
185. The Council approved those criteria as a result of which the allowance for a dependent spouse was to be adjusted to lire 576,560 p.a. from 1 January 1982.
(iii) ICSC Methodology for Between-Survey Adjustment at Headquarters Duty Stations
186. The Council was informed of the new ICSC methodology for between-survey adjustments at Headquarters duty stations and examined the review of the item made by the Finance Committee. It recalled having itself confirmed the validity of the current FAO methodology and therefore was grateful for the opportunity to comment particularly on the size of between-survey adjustment which could now be greater than five percent if so warranted by movements of the salary index.
187. The Council agreed that the ICSC decision should be implemented retroactively with the salary adjustment of June 1982 (which meant an increase of 6.4 instead of five percant in Rome General Service salaries - pretax basis) but invited the Director-General to approach ICSC for a change in the methodology that would permit return to the longstanding practice of increasing salaries by five percent at a time. The Council agreed with the action proposed by the Director-General on the other points relating to the type of index used, and to the method of applying increases to pretax salaries and deriving net salaries therefrom by the application of current income tax legislation and the addition of the four percent language factor.
188. The Council noted the progress made by ICSC in developing common job classification Tier II standards for a number of occupations. It agreed with the Director-General’s plan to apply the Tier II standards promulgated by ICSC to the posts covered by these standards whereas the master standard (Tier I) would continue to be applied only when classification action was required on individual posts not covered by Tier II standards.
189. The Council examined the Finance Committee’s review of the ICSC’s Seventh Annual Report (1981) as tontained in its Forty-ninth Session Report. 17 It noted that no decisions were required.
190. The Council noted with grave concern that since the beginning of the year the Italian Customs Authorities had been delaying or refusing the issuance of duty-free import licences for equipment and materials which the Organization was regularly importing for official use. This was in violation of Article VIII, Section 19(c), of the Headquarters’ Agreement which stipulated without conditions of any kind that
"Articles imported or exported by FAO for official purposes shall be exempt from Customs duties and other levies, prohibitions and restrictions on import and exports. Such articles shall include, without limitations by reason of this enumeration, publications, still and moving pictures, and film and sound recordings."
191. The Council was also informed that despite steps taken by the Director-General and the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, there had been no change to this attitude of the Customs Authorities, as a result of which the Organization had so far incurred additional costs (in storage and other charges) in excess of US $110 000, of which more than US $57 900 had actually been paid, and a sum in excess of US $53 000 was due but not yet disbursed. Further costs would be incurred if the Customs Authorities continued to refuse or delay the issuance of Import Licences.
192. The Representative of the Host Government stressed that delays had sometimes occurred in cases of sizeable requests submitted by the Organization under a general labeling, whereas the Customs Authorities requested a detailed breakdown of the same. He also informed the Council of further steps taken recently by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs with the Customs Authorities and assured the Council of the Ministry’s best efforts towards obtaining the early release of the outstanding licences, and establishing a working arrangement for the regular issuance of import licences in future. To this end, the Ministry proposed an early meeting between officers of the Customs Authorities and the Organization to enable the former to obtain any further information or clarifications they required and release the licences.
193. The Council agreed to the suggestion of the Representative of the Host Government and expressed the hope that the question of import licences would be settled very soon. It requested to be informed of developments at its next session (June 1983).
194. The Council recalled that the Director-General reported to it once a year on the unscheduled sessions approved, on the sessions cancelled and on changes in attendance at approved sessions.
195. The Council noted that between 1 January and 1 October 1982, 13 unscheduled sessions had been approved, 16 sessions had been cancelled and there had been changes in attendance at three sessions.
196. Details are given in Appendix H of this report.
197. The Council examined the Revised Calendar and noted that the dates of its Eighty- third Session as scheduled would overlap with those of the World Food Council Session in New York (27-30 June 1983).
198. The Council accordingly decided that the dates of its Eighty-third Session would be 13-24 June 1983, and approved the calendar as set out in Appendix I to this Report.
199. In view of the short interval before the Eighty-third Session of the Council, it trusted that the Reports of the Programme and Finance Committees’ spring 1983 Sessions would be finalized and distributed to Member Nations as early as possible.
1 CL 82/11; CL 82/PV/l2; CL 82/PV/l8.
2 CL 82/4 paras. 18-30; CL 82/11 paras. 2.13-2.26; CL 82 LIM/1; CL 82/PV/l4; CL 82/PV/l9.
a Contributions in arrears include arrears payable by instalments due in 1982 (in 1981 in comparative figures) and in future years under Conference authorizations (on 1 January 1982 $20 875.79 due in 1982 and $123 807.21 due in future years).
b Including Member Nations admitted to membership at the Twenty-first Session of the Conference (November 1981).
c Receipts include release on 1 January 1981 of cash surplus of 1978/79 biennium: $2 269 696.22 applied to current assessments (1.65 percent) and $2 075 934.78 to arrears,
d See Appendix F for full details of amounts outstanding relating to each Member Nation.
3 Receipts in January include release of cash surplus of 1.65 percent in 1981, 10.66 percent in 1979, and 9.23 the prior biennium: percent in 1977.
4 Receipts include release of cash surplus of the prior biennium, applied against arrears or current assessments of all Member Nations.
5 Including Menber Nations admitted to membership at the current session of the Conference (November).
6 C 81/REP paras. 348-351: Resolution 18/81, LEVEL OF THE WORKING CAPITAL FUND.
7 Details of the position of each Member Nation are provided in Appendix C to this Report.
8 CL 82/11, paras. 2.36-2.53; C 83/5; C 83/5-Corr.l; C 83/6; C 83/7; CL 82/PV/l4; CL 82/PV/18.
9 CL 82/4, paras. 78-94; CL 82/11, paras. 2.73 - 2.79; CL 82/LIM/2, CL 80/REP, paras. 93-95; CL 82/PV/l4; CL 82/PV/19.
10 CL 82/3; CL 82/4; CL 82/11; CL 82/PV/l2. CL 82/PV/l3; CL 82/PV/l8.
11 CL 82/PV/l3; CL 82/PV/l8.
12 CL 82/11, paras. 1.97-1.101; CL 82/LIM/3; CL 82/PV/l2; CL 82/PV/l3; CL 82/PV/l8.
13 CL 82/11, paras. 1.65 - 1.73, Appendix A and paras. 2.10 - 2.12; CL 82/PV/l3; - CL 82/PV/l8.
14 CL 82/4, paras. 35 - 39; CL 82/PV/l3; CL 82/PV/l8.
15 CL 82/4, paras; 42-77; CL 82/11, paras. 2.58-2.72; CL 82/PV/l3; CL 82/PV/18.
16 CL 82/4 para. 46.
17 CL 82/4 paras. 52-57.
18 CL 82/4, paras. 116-117; CL 82/11, paras. 2.85-2.86; CL 82/PV/l3; CL 82/PV/l8; CL 82/PV/l9.
19 CL 82/20; CL 82/PV/12; CL 82/PV/l8.
20 CL 82/21; CL 82/PV/16; CL 82/PV/19.