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VI. Resolution 4/97

A. Target for WFP pledges for the period 1999-2000
B. Standards for plant quarantine harmonization
C. Negotiation of a legally binding instrument on prior informed consent (PIC)
D. Desert locust situation: Measures taken and further action required
E. Programme against African trypanosomiasis (PAAT)

A. Target for WFP pledges for the period 1999-2000


Recalling the provisions of Resolution 4/65 that the World Food Programme is to be reviewed before each Pledging Conference,

Noting that the review of the Programme was undertaken by the Executive Board of the World Food Programme at its Annual Session of 1997 and by the FAO Council at its Hundred and Twelfth Session,

Having considered Resolution 1/112 of the FAO Council as well as the recommendations of the Executive Board of the World Food Programme,

Recognizing the value of multilateral food aid as implemented by WFP since its inception and the necessity for continuing its action both as a form of capital investment and for meeting emergency food needs:

1. Establishes for the two years 1999 and 2000 a target for voluntary contributions of one billion United States dollars (2.1 million tonnes);

2. Urges Member States of the United Nations and Members and Associate Members of the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations and appropriate donor organizations to make every effort to ensure the full attainment of the target;

3. Requests the Secretary-General of the United Nations, in cooperation with the Director-General of FAO, to convene a Pledging Conference for this purpose.

(Adopted on 17 November 1997)

B. Standards for plant quarantine harmonization

62. The Conference adopted the Guidelines for Surveillance, and for Export Certification Systems.

63. It highlighted the need to develop further the capabilities and infrastructures in developing countries to implement these Standards. It noted the assistance already provided and called on donors, FAO and other technical agencies to increase the technical assistance to developing countries in the implementation of Standards.

C. Negotiation of a legally binding instrument on prior informed consent (PIC)

64. The Conference welcomed the progress made by the Intergovernmental Negotiating Committee (INC). It noted that one more INC meeting was scheduled prior to the Diplomatic Conference at which the finalized Convention on Prior Informed Consent (PIC) would be adopted.

65. The Conference expressed its appreciation for the excellent cooperation between the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP) and FAO in the implementation of the voluntary procedure, and supported the continuation of the present Secretariat arrangement.

66. The Conference recognized that the functions of the Interim Secretariat and the Convention Secretariat would require additional financial resources. It noted that the financial mechanism for the Convention and the financial arrangements for the Interim Secretariat would be discussed at the next INC. It also noted that the resources required for the implementation of a Convention would normally be provided by the Parties to the Convention. It agreed, however, that resources presently allocated under the Regular Programme for the present voluntary procedure would remain available for the execution of the Secretariat functions.

67. The Conference took note of the offer by Switzerland to provide host country facilities to a possible future UNEP part of the Joint Secretariat. The Conference drew attention to the fact that decisions on this matter would need to be made by the Diplomatic Conference.

68. The Conference stressed the necessity of providing appropriate technical and financial assistance to developing countries, to enable them to implement the obligations under the Convention, and to enhance their capacity to manage pesticides.

69. The Conference then:

a) Authorized the participation of the FAO Secretariat in an Interim Secretariat and in a Secretariat to the Convention if so desired during the negotiations and adopted by the Diplomatic Conference, provided that such arrangements were satisfactory to the Director-General and that costs additional to the implementation of the present voluntary procedure be met through extra-budgetary resources.

b) Agreed to accept changes in the voluntary PIC procedure, if so decided by the Diplomatic Conference, provided that costs additional to the implementation of the present voluntary procedure be met through extra-budgetary resources.

D. Desert locust situation: Measures taken and further action required

70. The Conference noted that although the overall Desert Locust situation was relatively calm, active locust populations with the potential to increase rapidly in numbers continued to be present in certain areas. The Conference recommended that locust-affected countries, supported by donors, maintain a high level of vigilance in the Western (West and North-West Africa), Central (the Red Sea countries) and Eastern (South-West Asia) Regions, especially in, or adjacent to, the active areas. In this context, the Conference called on locust-affected countries to continue the process of sustaining and strengthening their locust survey and control teams as the fundamental element of successful preventive locust control.

71. The Conference expressed its satisfaction with the progress made in establishing the EMPRES (Desert Locust) Programme in the Central Region, and in formulating an extension of the Programme to the Western Region. It was noted that the Central Region field programme was almost fully operational and was already having a significant impact on improving the Early Warning and Early Reaction capacities of participating countries. Much work remained to be done to minimize the possibility of locust plague development in the Region. The Conference called on the locust-affected countries and the international community to continue to support the on-going Central Region programme, and urgently to extend this support to the implementation phase of the Western Region.

72. The Conference recommended that locust-affected countries re-evaluate existing regional locust control structures in order to achieve an appropriate and efficient geographic coverage taking into account the effectiveness of these structures, and to establish a realistic financial provision that would assist affected Member Nations to take common action.

73. The Conference recommended that FAO continue to mobilize the neccessary resources to develop research programmes in the field of locusts, with the view to a greater participation in these programmes of researchers from the countries in the invasion areas.

74. The Conference noted the promising development of new products that can be used at low dosages. The Conference recommended that emphasis be given to further research on, and the application of, these new products, as well as alternatives to chemical pesticides, including biological controls, which would minimize the negative effects of locust control on the environment. The Conference further recommended that attention be given, through EMPRES, to studies on locust control strategy development, with a view to using the most effective and sustainable strategy for each situation.

75. The Conference took note of the persistent problem of obsolete pesticides left over from previous anti-locust campaigns and recommended that FAO take all measures aimed at finding solutions for their elimination.

76. In respect of locusts other than the Desert Locust, several members stated that these species posed a serious threat to food security. Special mention was made of the Red Locust in Central and Southern Africa. The Conference recommended that FAO, in collaboration with donor countries, consider providing assistance on coordination and control of the Red Locust. The Conference further recommended that FAO establish links between SADC countries in Southern Africa and the countries affected by Desert Locusts so that research results and operational experiences could be shared.

E. Programme against African trypanosomiasis (PAAT)

77. The Conference endorsed the objectives and structures proposed for PAAT in recognition of its concern over the considerable adverse impact of trypanosomiasis on agricultural production and human welfare, and for PAAT's potential to contribute to the objectives of the World Food Summit Plan of Action.

78. The Conference reiterated the strong concern expressed by Council that the proposal had not first been submitted to FAO's technical bodies for consideration, but nevertheless agreed with Council that owing to the importance of the subject to food security formal recognition of PAAT should not be delayed.

79. The Conference stressed that:

a) the main emphasis of the Programme should be on supporting action at the country level to advise and assist with the coordination of research and control activities;

b) sustainable control activities were essentially linked to efforts at the local and national levels;

c) follow-up action taken towards the further development and strengthening of PAAT should also take into account the need to facilitate South-South cooperation, which was of great interest in all the activities of FAO.

80. Noting the potential offered in the area of trypanosomiasis control for cooperation at the regional and institutional levels, the Conference recorded its appreciation of the inter-agency collaboration established through the PAAT Secretariat.

81. On being informed that no additional funding was necessary to cover the core activities over the next biennium, the Conference adopted the following Resolution:

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