CL 117/INF/7


Council

Hundred and Seventeenth Session

Rome, 9-11 November 1999

IMPLEMENTATION OF THE DECISIONS TAKEN AT THE HUNDRED AND SIXTEENTH SESSION OF THE COUNCIL

 

1.     The Approved Methods of Work of the Council require that an information document be prepared for each Council session reporting on the implementation of the decisions taken at the preceding session (CL 60/REP, Appendix G, paragraph 7.8).

2.     Listed hereunder are the decisions taken by the Hundred and Sixteenth Session of the Council and their implementation up to the date of going to press.

3.     The text in the decision column includes the Agenda Item title underlined, the text of the Council decisions and a reference in brackets to the paragraph in the Council Report.

DECISION

IMPLEMENTATION

HUNDRED AND SIXTEENTH SESSION OF THE COUNCIL (Rome, 14-19 June 1999)  
WORLD FOOD AND AGRICULTURE SITUATION  
Current World Food Situation  
Have the international community and FAO continue to closely monitor the large number of countries facing acute food shortages and emergency situations with a view to cooperating with the countries concerned in their recovery and rehabilitation efforts {para. 8 (b)} In line with its mandate, FAO's Global Information and Early Warning System continued to closely monitor the crop and food supply/demand situation in all countries facing acute food shortages and emergencies. The System's assessments were widely disseminated to the international community to mobilize relief assistance to the affected populations, as well as to promote agricultural recovery and rehabilitation.
More thoroughly integrate information on demand and consumption trends in future Council documents {para. 8 (d)} The set of indicators are being broadened to include more information on demand and consumption in all future assessments of the world and regional food security situations. One concrete output of this will be the document on The Assessment of the Impact of the Uruguay Round on Agricultural Markets and Food Security, which will be published in October 1999 at the request of the CCP.
Closely monitor the financial crises and their effects on agricultural markets, economic growth, incomes and trade {para. 8 (e)} The impact of the financial crises on agricultural markets and trade and economic growth will be covered in some detail in the document, The State of Food and Agriculture. See document C 99/2.
Ensure an agricultural trade environment that enables developing countries to take full advantage of their export potential {para. 8 (g)} Most of FAO's field programmes on agriculture, fisheries and forestry are directed towards assisting developing countries improve their productivity and export competitiveness. This work continues. Several normative activities have also focussed on enhancing export potentials and improving market access terms through analysis and technical assistance regarding both tariff and such non-tariff measures as sanitary and phytosanitary measures and technical barriers to trade.
Continue work in analyzing the impact of the Uruguay Round Agreements on trade liberalization, and continue assistance to the developing countries in adjusting to the new trading environment and in preparing themselves for the forthcoming World Trade Organization (WTO) negotiations {para. 8 (g)} Several activities have been undertaken to analyze the impact of the Uruguay Round on individual agricultural markets at the global level, as well as on the consequences of trade liberalization at the country level. Assistance to developing countries in adjusting to the new trading environment and in preparing themselves for the forthcoming WTO negotiations has been provided through country-level projects, regional seminars, Expert Consultations and Symposia at the global level, as well as an Umbrella Training Programme.
Provide adequate technical and financial assistance to facilitate countries' own efforts in meeting their food security objectives and in achieving sustainable rural development
{para. 8 (h)}
Large parts of FAO's Field Programme, in particular the SPFS, are delivered with countries' food security and sustainable development requirements in mind. More specific assistance is provided to countries facing food emergencies in terms of assessment, mobilization of food aid and agricultural rehabilitation programmes.
Report of the Twenty-fifth Session of the Committee on World Food Security (Rome, 31 May - 3 June 1999)  
Take into account the conclusions and recommendations contained in the Report in the future work of the Committee, particularly in monitoring the implementation process of the WFS Plan of Action (para. 10) The Committee's First Report to ECOSOC on the Implementation of the World Food Summit Plan of Action has been transmitted, and an oral introduction delivered to ECOSOC by the Director-General of FAO.
Transmit to ECOSOC the Committee's Report on the Implementation of the World Food Summit Plan of Action (para. 10) Action has been taken.
Use indicators such as poverty indices, terms of trade, income distribution, purchasing power and other suitable quantifiable indicators to document the situation regarding access to food across countries and among different sectors of populations within countries (para. 11) The Committee's recommendations, as endorsed by Council, regarding development of FIVIMS, use of indicators and overall monitoring of the WFS Plan of Action implementation process are guiding the Secretariat's preparation for the Twenty-sixth Session of the CFS.
Develop FIVIMS as an instrument for providing data and decision-making tools for the implementation of the WFS Plan of Action at national, regional and global levels, and give high priority to this area of work in cooperation with all relevant international agencies
(para. 11)
Progress with FIVIMS has been rapid and encouraging. Participation in the IAWG has increased to 23 organizations, including 13 in the UN System. A Secretariat to co-ordinate Inter-Agency FIVIMS activities has been set up at FAO, and an independent Website is being established. In the coming year, three major issues will be addressed including establishment of pilot national FIVIMS activities at country level; establishment of a Common International Database (CID) on Food Insecurity and Vulnerability Indicators; and development of consensus on the identification of food insecure and vulnerable groups at sub-national level.
Have the CFS closely monitor the implementation of the World Food Summit (para. 12) The Committee's recommendations, as endorsed by Council, regarding development of FIVIMS, use of indicators and overall monitoring of the WFS Plan of Action implementation process are guiding the Secretariat's preparation for the Twenty-sixth Session of the CFS.
Have CFS Sessions in even years held after the FAO Regional Conferences, in order to take into account the conclusions of such Conferences regarding the implementation of the WFS Plan of Action (para. 12) The Twenty-sixth Session of CFS has been rescheduled so as to fall after conclusion of the last Regional Conference, to be held in Japan at the beginning of September 2000, and an agenda item on WFS Follow-up will be included for each Regional Conference.
Urge countries to take concerted efforts in the direction of favourable macro-economic environments, peaceful and stable political situations and appropriate sectoral policies to effectively implement the WFS Plan of Action (para. 14) Technical assistance and policy advice on macro-economic, sectoral and poverty reduction policies, including mobilization of resources for agricultural investment and food security, is provided by FAO to Member Nations in the context of the Organization's extrabudgetary-funded Field Programme.
Provide technical and financial assistance to help developing countries in their efforts to implement the Plan of Action and to reduce the number of the undernourished and food insecure (para. 14) Ditto.
Devise innovative and effective ways of mobilizing resources for agriculture investment and food security, including from the private sector (para. 14) Ditto.
Increase collaboration to strengthen the effectiveness of the FAO Special Programme for Food Security (SPFS) (para. 15) Action is being taken.
Comply with the Committee's request regarding the use of languages, as set out in paragraph 26 of its Report (para. 15) Action is being taken.
ACTIVITIES OF FAO AND WFP  
Report Of the Sixty-second Session of the Committee on Commodity Problems (Rome, 12-15 January 1999)  
Continue monitoring the world commodity situation and longer term prospects (para. 18) This is a continuing activity of FAO's Commodities and Trade Division. Monitoring of the world commodity situation is done routinely for a large number of basic foods, tropical beverages and agricultural raw materials, and several Intergovernmental Groups have reviewed these results. Longer-term monitoring with a time horizon of 2005 has also been completed for most major agricultural commodities.
Pay attention to the countries covered by the Marrakech Decision on Measures Concerning the Possible Negative Effects of the Reform Programme on Least-Developed and Net-Food-Importing Developing Countries, as well as to Small Island Developing States (para. 18) FAO's normative activities on the Uruguay Round pay particular attention to the countries covered by the Marrakech Decision. The Secretariat monitors the food import situation of these countries on a regular basis and reports its analyses to the WTO Committee on Agriculture periodically. A paper produced for the September Geneva Symposium dealt with national experiences of this group of countries in implementing the Uruguay Round. The Small Island Developing States also comprise this group of countries.
Further analyze the effects on food security in developing countries in preparation for the forthcoming round of multilateral trade negotiations (para. 19) The Secretariat has completed further analysis on Assessing the Effects of the Uruguay Round Agreement on Agricultural Markets and Food Security, which now also encompasses the effects on food security in developing countries as requested by the Committee on Commodity Problems in January 1999.
Help developing countries to prepare for the forthcoming round of multilateral trade negotiations (para. 20) The implementation of the Umbrella Training Programme on the Uruguay Round and future multilateral trade negotiations began in June 1999 with a workshop in Honduras for countries of that region. Additional regional workshops were held in Cairo (26-30 September 1999), Dakar (4-8 October) and Prague (4-8 October and 10-15 January 1999). An additional ten workshops are planned. The Symposium on Agriculture, Trade and Food Security: Issues and Options in the Forthcoming WTO Negotiations from the Perspective of Developing Countries was held in Geneva on 23-24 September 1999.
Continue efforts in improving the relevance of the activities of the Intergovernmental Commodity Groups, including the adaptation of their work programmes, as appropriate, to the World Food Summit Plan of Action and to changing international trade conditions and disciplines (para. 21) The Intergovernmental Groups, which have met since the 62nd session of the Committee on Commodity Problems (CCP), have been informed of the CCP's recommendations concerning the need for continued efforts to improve the relevance of their activities, including adaptation of their work programmes, as appropriate, to the World Food Summit Plan of Action and to changing international trade conditions and disciplines.
Analyze, in cooperation with the Common Fund for Commodities (CFC), the cost-effectiveness of projects and also ensure wide dissemination of the results to Members (para. 22) Consultations are underway between FAO and the CFC to develop approaches for the evaluation of the cost effectiveness of projects, particularly in the light of the CFC's recent shift in emphasis from grant to loan financing, as well as the continued need for provision of counterpart resources by cooperating countries/institutions. Consultations are underway to seek to ensure the widest possible dissemination of access to project results through the intergovernmental/ICB framework, as well as through an appropriate sharing of intellectual property rights safeguarding the interests of both FAO and CFC Member Nations.
Report of the Fifteenth Session of the Committee on Agriculture  (Rome, 25-29 January 1999)  
Promote expanding partnerships to reduce duplication and optimize use of human and financial resources (para. 24) A large percentage of the normative work of the AG, ES & SD departments is implemented through partnership arrangements, in the form of information exchange, expertise and coordination of programme activities, working groups of UN Agencies, and international and national research and development institutions.
Maintain a balanced programme of work, providing technical assistance through a well-focussed, demand-driven field programme, and provide policy advice, information exchange, and harmonized standards, in line with normative role of the Organization (para. 24) The programme of work of the AG, ES and SD departments for the new biennium meets the expectations of the Council, providing a sound balance between normative and demand-driven field work in projects and continuing service agreements. It focusses on policy advice and information exchange through the publication of bulletins, and the continued upgrading of information disseminated on the Internet through Websites and information networks.
Promote a coherent programme on agricultural biotechnology to assist Member Nations in obtaining the full benefits of new developments while minimizing risks (para. 25) An Inter-departmental Working Group on Biotechnology (IWGB), whose primary objective is to foster a co-ordinated cross-sectoral approach to FAO's work in food and agricultural biotechnology, is being convened. Terms of reference for the Group have been drafted and it held its first meeting in September 1999. A Technical Project for RP funding, where a series of actions are planned for the years 2000-2001, is currently being prepared. A project is being also developed for technical assistance to Ecuador on the development and harmonization of bio-safety regulations.
Serve as a forum for the discussion of issues and for standard-setting, and as an `honest broker' of quality science-based information through such mechanisms as the International Plant Protection Commission (IPPC), the Codex Alimentarius, and particularly in relation to biotechnology (para. 25) Targeted outputs of the IWGB, as set out in its terms of reference, include FAO science-based statements on specific aspects of biotechnology, and FAO papers on biotechnological issues. The Survey of Biotechnology Networks and the Biotechnology and Genetic Engineering Glossary are being finalized. FAO also participated in the Technical Assessment of Terminator Technology which was presented to the COP of the CBD, as well as in several workshops on Biotechnology and on Biosafety.
Continue the supporting role in organic agriculture, especially with regard to product certification and market information (para. 26) An Inter-departmental Working Group on Organic Agriculture has been established to promote appropriate cross-sectoral approaches to Organic Agriculture throughout the Organization. The recently-concluded 23rd Session (23 June-3 July), of the Codex Alimentarius Commission, also adopted Guidelines for the Production, Processing, Labelling and Marketing of Organically Produce Foods (GL 32 - 1999) to standardize the requirements which underpin the production of, and the labelling and claims for, organically-produced foods. This represents a significant first step toward official international harmonization of requirements concerning organic foods.
Increase attention to the contribution of urban and peri-urban agriculture to food security in collaboration with other partners (para. 26) An Inter-departmental Working Group has been established to coordinate activities directly concerned with urban food security and covers urban and peri-urban agriculture, as well as food marketing in urban areas. Terms of reference have been drafted and the Group is initiating activities to address a broad range of issues and activities that, taken together, constitute the functions and links of the urban food system and the main relationships between urban food systems and rural and agricultural development. The main tasks to be implemented have been identified and include activities such as development of an FAO policy paper on Urban Food Security; creation of an FAO information facility on Food for the Cities; development of an approach to programme development at country and municipal levels; and the organization of a specialized workshop and seminar with focus on regional issues.
Increase focus on the special needs for capacity-building on technical, legislative and trade-related matters, in particular in relation to the Uruguay Round and the forthcoming multilateral trade negotiations (para. 26) ESC has initiated a series of activities focussing on the capacity-building of developing countries in relation to the follow-up to the Uruguay Round and the forthcoming multilateral trade negotiations on agriculture.
Continue focus on information data and information systems development, including inter alia marketing and decision support tools (para. 26) Liaison is being enhanced so that trade opportunities can be built into national level marketing information systems. Data is now being collected and organized on access to institutional farm credit and other financial services.
Report of the Twenty-third Session of the Committee on Fisheries (Rome, 15-19 February 1999)  
Have all countries intensify their efforts to promote the effective implementation of the Code of Conduct for Responsible Fisheries (para. 28) By Circular Letter of 13 September 1999 transmitting the draft declaration of the Code of Conduct for Responsible Fisheries adopted unanimously by the Ministerial Meeting held in March 1999, the Director-General requested all Member Nations to promote the implementation of the Code of Conduct and for developed countries to provide assistance to developing countries in the implementation of the Code.
  The Government of Great Britain and Northern Ireland is making a Trust Fund contribution of approximately US$ 35 million for a project on sustainable fisheries livelihoods through the implementation of the Code of Conduct for Responsible Fisheries in Africa.
Develop indicators to evaluate implementation of the Code of Conduct for Responsible Fisheries, and the requirement for simplified questionnaires (para. 28) A none-parametric method of analysis and representation of sustainability indicators for fisheries (RAPFISH Method) aiming at analyzing the effectiveness of the Code of Conduct has been developed. An e-mail Conference on the simplification of the questionnaires to monitor implementation of the Code will be undertaken in April 2000.
Encourage relevant international organizations and financial institutions to continue their support to developing countries, countries in transition and Small Island Developing States in the implementation of the Code of Conduct (para. 28) FAO participated in the International Workshop on Sustainable Development in the Small Island Developing States in Lofoten, Norway, and made a passionate plea for donors to provide funding for the SIDS Programme.
Take urgent action on the three International Plans of Action (IPOA) for: Reducing Incidental Catch of Seabirds in Longline Fisheries, Conservation and Management of Sharks, and Management of Fishing Capacity, and take steps to facilitate their implementation (para. 29) The International Plans of Action have been published in the five official languages of the Organization and guidelines for the management of fishing capacity have been drafted. A Technical Consultation on the Measurement of Fishing Capacity will be held in Mexico City from
29 November to 3 December 1999.
Develop a strategy to address the problem of unauthorized and unreported fishing (IUU), and carry forward this initiative through the development of an IPOA within the framework of the Code of Conduct (para. 30) A review of activities undertaken by Regional Fishery Management Organizations is under way. Australia has seconded an expert to FAO to synthesize the available information, and to elaborate draft international guidelines/plans of action to be discussed at a Technical Consultation to be held in mid 2000.
Urge countries that have not yet accepted the Compliance Agreement to do so as soon as possible (para. 30) By Circular Letter of 13 September 1999, the Director-General in transmitting the Rome Declaration on the Implementation of the Code of Conduct which was adopted unanimously by the Ministerial Meeting in March 1999 urged Member Nations of FAO to take appropriate steps to accept the Compliance Agreement as soon as possible.
Promote integrated resource management, including inland capture fisheries and aquaculture, as well as the protection of inland water bodies as a means of facilitating their sustainability (para. 31) A regional review on trends and strategies on aquaculture development in Asia-Pacific, Africa, Europe, North America and South America has been concluded. A Workshop on Integration of Aquaculture and Irrigation was held in Accra, Ghana in September 1999. An Asia Regional Scooping Workshop on Primary Aquatic Animal Health Care in the Rural, Small-scale Aquaculture Development was held in Bangladesh in September 1999. A Global Consultation on Aquaculture Development Trends and Strategies was also held in Bangkok in October 1999 as a prelude to an FAO/Network of Aquaculture Centre in Asia and the Pacific (NACA) on aquaculture development in February 2000.
Establish a COFI Sub-Committee on Aquaculture (para. 32) An ad hoc Expert Meeting to study and determine the rationale, formulate the terms of reference and assess the financial requirements of the Sub-Committee will be held in Bangkok in February 2000 as a follow-up to the FAO/NACA Global Conference on Aquaculture in the Third Millennium.
Continue work in the controversial area of eco-labelling (para. 33) Contacts were maintained with other agencies including the World Trade Organization's Committee on Trade and Environment on this issue. An updated review of various critical aspects of eco-labelling of fish and fishery products and an analysis of the rationale for international guidelines is under preparation. A second open Technical Consultation is planned for Autumn 2000.
Ensure that any eco-labelling scheme is transparent, voluntary, non-discriminatory and that it not be used to restrict trade (para. 33) Ditto.
Contribute to the work of the World Trade Organization's Committee on Trade and Environment and other bodies to help ensure that fish trade does not compromise responsible fisheries management (para. 33) The Organization participated in meetings of WTO on trade and environment, and preparations have been made for a technical review on subsidies and their impact.
Intensify work with developing Members to strengthen capacity-building in the fisheries sector and to further strengthen regional fishery bodies (para. 34) The Western Eastern Central Atlantic Fishery Commission (WECAFC) held its Ninth Session in September 1999. It abolished its two Working Parties, as recommended by FAO Conference Resolution 13/97. The Commission agreed to have a simple structure consisting of the Secretariat, a Scientific Advisory Group which will act as advisory body to the Commission and ad hoc Working Groups with clearly defined terms of reference. The Commission defined a mode of operation for its ad hoc Working Groups and agreed on elements that could enhance its effectiveness in providing fisheries management advice.
  The Department is presently undertaking a review and synthesis of issues of governance in FAO fishery bodies and regional fishery management organizations. Another study is under way to review the manner in which scientific and technical advice by FAO and Fishery Bodies have been used by Member Nations and sub-regional organizations to better coordinate the work of FAO Bodies with regional and sub-regional fishery bodies, as well as with intergovernmental organizations.
Produce a biography to underline the significance of Dr Lizárraga's contribution to the fisheries sector, particularly in promoting the Code of Conduct (para. 36) The draft biography has been submitted to the Mexican Authorities for their comments and observations.
Make adequate resources available to the Fisheries Department to enable it to effectively carry out its increasing workload in accordance with the priorities of the Committee on Fisheries (para. 37) Action is being taken.
Report of the Fourteenth Session of the Committee on Forestry (Rome, 1-5 March 1999)  
Make adequate resources available to forestry, in accordance with the global, regional and national needs of the forestry sector, and give higher prominence to forestry in the FAO Strategic Framework (para. 39) The Forestry Department has been given priority status as regards the reduction of budget allocation in a Zero Nominal Growth Scenario.
Assist in the intergovernmental efforts to reach a consensus on arrangements and mechanisms for the sustainable development of all types of forests, to facilitate regional processes of criteria and indicators for sustainable forest management and to build national capacity for the development of national forest programmes
(para. 40)
A workshop on National Forest Programmes Formulation and Implementation was held in Istanbul, Turkey, on 11 and 12 October 1999.
Increase activities in support of: countries with low forest cover; prevention, monitoring and control of forest fires; forest resource assessment; collection and analysis of data and conducting outlook studies; and contribution of forestry to food security and to poverty alleviation (para. 40) An Expert Workshop on Special Needs and Requirements of Developing Countries with Low Forest Cover and Unique Types of Forest was held in Teheran, Islamic Republic of Iran, from 4 to 8 October 1999.
  The ADB and the World Bank are also, in partnership with the European Commission, enhancing their efforts to improve data collection and analysis, as well as outlook studies for the Africa Region.
Negotiations On The International Undertaking On Plant Genetic Resources  
Have Ambassador Gerbasi convene, in consultation with the Director-General, meetings of the Contact Group, as well as an Extraordinary Session of the Commission to adopt the final text, subject to the availability of funds (para. 47) The Secretariat, in consultation with the Chairman, considered that up to three Sessions of the Contact Group and an Extraordinary Session of the Commission would be necessary to finalize the negotiations for the Revision of the International Undertaking on time for the Hundred and Nineteenth Session of the Council in November 2000. A project seeking extrabudgetary funds for this process has accordingly been sent to potential donors. Sufficient funds were obtained for convening the First Session of the Contact Group, including funding for the participation of developing countries, and the Session was therefore held from 20-24 September 1999 in Rome.
Urge donors to make adequate funds available for above meetings in order to move forward as rapidly as possible (para. 48) Ditto.
Appeal to countries to show flexibility and a spirit of compromise and to maintain and increase the momentum so that the revised Undertaking may, at the latest, be submitted to the Hundred and Nineteenth Session of the Council in November 2000 (para. 49) Ditto.
Have a report on progress in the negotiations be considered by the Conference at its Thirtieth Session in November 1999 (para. 49) Action has been taken. See document C 99/9.
Give high priority to convening a meeting of the Commission's Intergovernmental Technical Working Group on Animal Genetic Resources for Food and Agriculture, in the forthcoming biennium, in order to develop further the Global Strategy for the Management of Farm Animal Genetic Resources and, in particular, have the Working Group coordinate the preparation of the first Report on the State of the World's Animal Genetic Resources, for which purpose extrabudgetary resources are required and urge donors to make necessary funds available (para. 50) A meeting of the Intergovernmental Technical Working Group on Animal Genetic Resources for Food and Agriculture has been budgeted in the PWB proposal for the next biennium. The Secretariat will develop draft guidelines for the country-driven reporting process for the Report on the State of the World on Animal Genetic Resources. Preparatory work should begin early, and be synchronized with Governing Body sessions. The Secretariat has been endeavouring to obtain the necessary extrabudgetary resources, without much success to date.
World Food Programme  
Amendments to the General Regulations and Rules of WFP  
Transmit the proposed amendments to Article XIII, paragraph 2, and Appendix B of the General Regulations of the World Food Programme found in Appendix D of the Report to the Conference for approval (para. 57) Action has been taken. See document C 99/LIM/9.
Preparations for the Thirtieth Session of the FAO Conference  
Arrangements for the Session and Timetable  
Take action on recommendations listed in paragraph 59 of the Report (para. 59) All actions have been taken.
Have the Joint Meeting of the Programme and Finance Committees review the issue again on the arrangements to schedule a separate meeting to permit interaction among Ministers under its standing item on Savings and Efficiencies in Governance (para. 60) The Joint Meeting of the Programme and Finance Committees in its September 1999 Session decided to take this matter up in subsequent sessions.
Deadline for Nominations for Independent Chairman of the Council  
Establish the deadline for the receipt of nominations for Independent Chairman  of the Council, at 12.00 hours on  Friday 20 August 1999 (para. 61) Action has been taken.
Preparations for the Conference on the Multifunctional Character of Agriculture and Land (Maastricht, Netherlands, September 1999)  
Submit the Summary Report to the Thirtieth Session of the FAO Conference for information and to the Hundred and Seventeenth Session of the FAO Council for information and guidance on whether the status of the Summary Report submitted to Conference should be upgraded to that of a document for discussion and decision (para. 67) See document C 99/INF/20 which contains a summary of the meeting and the Report of the Chairman, Main Outcome of the Conference.
Draft Plan of Action on Agriculture in Small Island Developing States  
Submit the Plan of Action on Agriculture for Small Island Developing States to the Special Session of the UN General Assembly in September 1999 for consideration in its review of the implementation of the Barbados Programme of Action (para. 70) Action taken.
Accord high priority to the implementation of the Plan of Action and, in this context, appeal to international organizations and the donor community to enhance their support to SIDS Members (para. 71) FAO has communicated the outcome of the Ministerial Conference on SIDS widely, including through a Website dedicated for the purpose. Moreover, the Secretariat will participate in the Special Session of the United Nations General Assembly and draw the attention of donors to the Plan of Action.
PROGRAMME, BUDGETARY, FINANCIAL AND ADMINISTRATIVE MATTERS  
Programme Evaluation Report 1998-99  
Pursue the integrated use of evaluation in programme planning and the budgetary process in order for evaluation assessments to provide feedback to management in improving programmes and in deciding their future (para. 72) A comprehensive document on an enhanced evaluation regime in FAO was considered by the Programme Committee in September 1999. See document CL 117/3.
Make further efforts to enhance the analytical quality of various evaluations towards greater systematic analysis of effects and impact of programmes, to include a more systematic approach in the use of the assessment criteria and the coverage of such thematic priorities as gender concerns (para. 73) Ibid.
Transmit the Programme Evaluation Report 1998-99 to the Conference for approval (para. 76) Action taken. See document C 99/4.
Summary Programme of Work and Budget 2000-2001  
Basis of Discussion  
Protect the technical programmes of the Organization in presenting a ZNG scenario, minimize the abolition of professional posts in technical areas, and apply savings to meet the still unmet Council requirements irrespective of the budget level approved by the Conference, especially in ensuring a more adequate language balance in FAO's substantive work (para. 80) Under the guidance of the Director-General, the ZNG scenario has been formulated precisely to achieve these aims. See document C 99/3.
Reactions to the scenarios  
Exhort all Members of the Council in arrears to honour their commitments (para. 84) Immediately after the Hundred and Sixteenth Session of the Council, the Organization began contacting Member Nations in arrears who were in danger of losing their vote.
Conclusions  
Make further efforts to seek a possible consensus on the budget level at the September sessions of the Programme and Finance Committees and at the Hundred and Seventeenth Session of the Council, prior to final consideration of the Programme of Work and Budget by the Conference (para. 86) Action is being taken.
Implement the planned consolidation and integration of administrative structures within the constraint of available resources, with a view to full implementation in early 2000 (para. 87) This is a major feature of both the ZRG and ZNG scenarios, but the final decision regarding implementation rests with the Conference. See document C 99/3.
In developing the full Programme of Work and Budget, reflect to the maximum extent possible the recommendations made and priorities identified by the Committees of the Council in their respective sectors, as well as by the Ministerial Sessions (para. 88) Action has been taken by the concerned Departments within the limitations inherent in each scenario. It is more fully reflected in the ZRG scenario. See document C 99/3.
FAO Strategic Framework 2000-2015 (Version 3.0)  
Have the basic mandate, as well as the results and conclusions of relevant international conferences, particularly the World Food Summit, serve as a foundation for guiding FAO's work in the coming fifteen years (para. 90) This has been incorporated in Version 4.0 of the Strategic Framework. See document C 99/12.
Introduce greater focus and coherence in the presentation of the Strategies in Version 4.0, through a consolidation of elements and clarification of comparative advantages (para. 91) This is reflected in Version 4.0 See document C 99/12.
Further clarify the role FAO will play in each Strategy, including the nature of the partnerships envisaged, both with other UN Organizations and with non-UN and non-governmental partners (para. 91) This is reflected in Version 4.0 See document C 99/12.
Give further attention and refinement to defining criteria for priority-setting, considering FAO's comparative advantages (para. 92) Version 4.0 addresses this issue. See document C 99/12.
Inform FAO Members and Regional Groups that, if Members or Groups wish to make comments and amendments, they should submit them to the Secretariat as a matter of urgency in order to facilitate further elaboration of Annex IV (para. 93) Regional Groups were alerted to the need to submit such comments as soon as possible.
Have the relative role of FAO vis-ŕ-vis its partners in the various areas for which cooperative links are envisaged, be rigorously assessed and more precisely specified in Annex III of Version 4.0 (para. 93) A revised Annex is included in the supplementary document to Version 4.0. See document C 99/12.
Conclusions  
Make Version 4.0 as concise as possible, with supporting material to be included in a supplement to the document itself (para. 96) Action has been taken. See document C 99/12.
Give Members the possibility to study the next version well ahead of the Conference, thereby enhancing the nature of the Strategic Framework as the policy document to guide the action of FAO over the longer term (para. 97) Version 4.0 and Sup. 1 (C 99/12) were available in August 1999. Sup. 2 was available some time later as comments were awaited from Members.
Report of the Joint Meeting of the Programme Committee and the Finance Committee (Rome, May 1999)  
Change in the Quota Distribution System of Information Products  
Introduce the arrangements listed in paragraph 99 of the Report (para. 99) Action has been taken.
Continue efforts to rationalize the distribution of documentation and publications in the search for further economies (para. 100) Action continues to be taken.
Report on Decentralization  
Periodically assess the implementation of the decentralization policy, given its widespread impact on the work of the Organization (para. 102) The implementation of the decentralization policy is periodically and systematically reviewed by the Organization.
Report of the Eighty-first Session of the Programme Committee  (Rome, 3 - 7 May 1999)  
Review of FAO Language Policy  
Give priority to the matter of imbalance in the use of all FAO languages so as to facilitate communication and understanding of the issues raised (para. 105) Action is being taken.
Allocate appropriate resources in the Programme of Work and Budget 2000-2001 under each budget option in order to reduce the present imbalance in the use of languages of the Organization (para. 106) A set of special measures is included in the PWB (protected to the maximum extent in the ZNG scenario) See document C 99/3.
Submit to the Programme and Finance Committees supplementary information concerning resource allocations in support of Language Policy in FAO in previous biennial budgets, in the proposed PWB for 2000-2001 and in the long term to demonstrate the progressive improvement sought by the Council (para. 107) Action has been taken.
Ensure improved language balance in essential normative activities such as Codex Alimentarius and phytosanitary standards; animal and plant genetic resources; the Sub-committee on Fish Trade of the Committee on Fisheries; WAICENT and the Organization's Website on the Internet; and activities of self-evident geographical interest, where the use of FAO languages of the most directly concerned countries was imperative to ensure their full participation (para. 108) Phytosanitary standards

International standards for phytosanitary measures (ISPMs), previously adopted by the FAO Conference and currently adopted by the Interim Commission on Phytosanitary Measures, are published in all official languages of the Organization. Stocks are being replenished for those documents in languages that have been in short supply.

Plant genetic resources

ˇ Currently the AGPS/PGR home page is in English. Efforts are underway to launch these papers in French and Spanish. The related Webpage ICPPGR.FAO.ORG (which is planned to be merged with the AGPS Webpage) includes several documents in three languages (English/French/Spanish).

With limited resources (financial and human), it will be difficult to translate all PGR documents into three official languages. This aspect needs to be discussed at Divisional/Departmental level.

  The Department as a whole has made a concerted effort to improve the language balance through the amendment of its Publications Plan for the following biennium to include more translations of its planned publications in the various official languages of the Organization, as relevant to their regional distribution and potential audience. Similarly, the Websites of the various units/divisions are being developed to include English, Spanish and French editions of core information, as well as Arabic in the case of TCOR. The Department also actively participated, through a representative from TCI, in finalizing the Strategic Framework Version 3.0 "Corporate Communication Policy and Strategy" on "Communicating FAO's Message".
  The Twenty-third Session of the Codex Alimentarius Commission was informed of the decision of the Hundred and Sixteenth Session of the Council regarding the extension of language services to include Arabic and Chinese, and decided that efforts should be made for the provision of the limited services for Arabic and Chinese by the time of the next (Twenty-fourth) Session of the Commission in 2001, resources permitting. It recognized that the provision of additional language services would take a longer time but almost complete services could be envisaged by 2005, resources permitting. It concurred with the view that any shift or re-allocation of resources to provide for these services should not be detrimental to the work of the Commission. It also agreed as a first step that, subject to availability of resources, beginning with the biennium 2000-2001, future Sessions including working papers and reports would be produced in Arabic, Chinese, English, French and Spanish.
Take a more proactive attitude to ensuring more balanced use of FAO languages, supported by adequate training programmes and attention to linguistic skills at the recruitment stage (para. 109) Funding has been earmarked for specific language training for Director and Professional category FAO staff. The use of computer-supported language study systems is also being researched.
Ensure adequate language balance in the Secretariat's working arrangements and in applying the appropriate rules and monitoring systems (para. 110) The recruitment practice, through vacancy announcement language requirements, goes far beyond the official policy. Where divisions have requested a waiver for the second language, approval has only been recommended on condition that the selected candidate acquires the required level within the first year of assignment.
Report of the Ninety-first (Rome, 11 January 1999) and Ninety-second (Rome, 3-7 May 1999) Sessions of the Finance Committee  
Financial Position of the Organization  
Encourage all Member Nations, irrespective of size, to honour their financial obligations towards the Organization and urge them to pay their contributions in full and on time in order to enable the Organization to continue to fulfil its mandate (para. 112) Member Nations will shortly start to receive quarterly statements of their accounts. Such statements will show all current assessments and the status of arrears. This will increase the frequency and comprehensiveness of our contacts with Member Nations on the status of their contributions.
Scale of Contributions 2000-2001  
Forward a Draft Resolution to the Conference on Scale of Contributions 2000-2001 for adoption (para. 115) Action taken. See document C 99/LIM/11.
Continue the discussion on the Scale of Assessments at the next Session of the Council, based on the outcome of deliberations to take place at the next session of the Finance Committee (para. 119) Discussion of this matter will be continued under Agenda Item 11.2 of the Hundred and Seventeenth Session of the Council, as part of discussions on the Report of the Ninety-third Session of the Finance Committee.
CONSTITUTIONAL AND LEGAL MATTERS  
Report of the Sixty-ninth Session of the Committee on Constitutional and Legal Matters (CCLM)  
Acceptance of Credentials: Practice of Selected Organizations of the UN System  
Forward the recommendations on Acceptance of Credentials: Practice of Selected Organizations of the UN System listed in paragraph 121 of the Report to the Credentials Committee for adoption (para. 121) The Credentials Committee of the next Conference Session will be fully informed of the recommendations made, on the basis of the CCLM Report, by the Council, at its Hundred and Sixteenth Session.
Forward a Draft Resolution to the Conference on Amendments to the General Rules of the Organization:

A. Abolition of the Nominations Committee
B. Introduction of Electronic Voting
C. Voting Procedures for Elections
D. Abolition of the Technical Committees of the Conference
for adoption (para. 123)

Action taken. See document C 99/LIM/8.
Abolition of the Indian Ocean Fishery Commission and Merger of the Committee for the Development and Management of Fisheries in the Bay of Bengal with the Asia-Pacific Fishery Commission Action taken. See document C 99/LIM/8.
Implement operative paragraphs of Resolution 1/116 on Abolition of the Indian Ocean Fishery Commission and its Subsidiary Bodies and Approval of the Merger of the Committee for the Development and Management of Fisheries in the Bay of Bengal with the Asia-Pacific Fishery Commission listed in paragraph 124 of the Report (para. 124) Action has been taken.
Other Constitutional and Legal Matters  
Invitations to Non-member Nations to Attend FAO Sessions  
Invite the Russian Federation to attend to Hundred and Sixteenth Session of the FAO Council as an observer (para. 125) Action has been taken.
Application for Membership in the Organization  
Invite Niue to participate, in an observer capacity, in appropriate Council meetings as well as regional and technical meetings of the Organization of interest to them (para. 128) Action has been taken.
OTHER MATTERS  
Revised Calendar of FAO Governing Bodies and Other Main Sessions 1998-99  
Convene the Hundred and Seventeenth Session of the Council in Rome from 9 to 11 November 1999 (para. 129) Action taken. Invitations were despatched on 21 September 1999.