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Director-General's proposals for organization adjustments

414. In accordance with the recommendations of the Seventh Session of the Conference a management survey was conducted; the survey was carried out by the Organization and Methods Division of the Treasury of the United Kingdom. At the request of the Director-General, the Office of the Director-General and the whole of the Informational and Educational Services were included in the scope of the survey. After the management survey's report had been made available to him, the Director-General transmitted copies to all Member Governments.

415. Several delegations indicated that in their opinion the report of the management survey exhibited some deficiencies and imperfections, arising in particular from the fact that it did not take sufficient account of the special problems confronting an international organization representing the interests of 71 Member Nations and working in three languages of equal status. It was also pointed out that, the wishes of the Conference notwithstanding, the management survey had not sufficiently dealt with the administration of technical assistance activities and the execution of administrative functions within the technical divisions.

416. The Director-General outlined to the Conference certain major proposals, to take effect on 1 January 1956, relating to changes in the organizational structure of the Organization in the light of his experience and observations since his appointment. He emphasized that the changes he contemplated varied in some respects from the proposals contained in the management survey report -- although he had utilized some of the suggestions put forward in that report - since he had approached the whole program of reorganization from a somewhat different point of view.

417. The Director-General explained that his proposals were designed to provide a more effective structure, that no net additional cost would be involved, but that in time a net saving of a significant amount would be realized; nevertheless, the proposals represented in the main, modifications of existing organizational arrangements rather than entirely new developments. In great part they related to certain changes within the Office of the Director-General, but some adjustments would affect the Information and Documents Services and (with a view to ensuring more effective integration of Regular Program and Technical Assistance programming, budgeting, and operational activities! the technical divisions.

418. The Director-General asked the Conference to grant him the flexibility and to give him the financial authority which he deemed necessary to implement organizational changes along the broad lines which he had indicated. He assured the Conference that he would report fully to the Conference or to the Council on all the changes he made, from both the financial and the operational points of view.

419. The Conference, taking into account the supplementary explanations provided by the Deputy Director-General, endorsed generally the plans put forward by the Director-General.

420. Some delegates who had expressed apprehension lest the modifications proposed in the Office of the Director-General would reduce the functions and responsibilities of the Secretary-General with respect to adequate diplomatic liaison and correspondence with Member Governments, were assured by representatives of the Director-General that no substantial changes were contemplated in the functions of the Secretary-General.

421. The Conference discussed the scope of the authority which the Director-General should be granted for effecting his proposed reorganization. The Conference had before it a proposal from the Director-General transmitted by the Committee on Financial Control.

422. A number of delegates felt that full freedom of action was not only desirable but essential, being in keeping with what is, in their opinion, the basic administrative principle that the chief administrative officer of any organization should have full responsibility for administrative matters, including internal organization, and also in keeping with the decision of the Seventh Session of the Conference which stated that " the implementation of the proposals in the report will be the responsibility of the Director-General " (paragraph 272). These delegates favored adoption of the proposal transmitted in the Report of the Committee on Financial Control.

423. Other delegates recalled that it was the Conference that had called for the management survey and that the authority of the Director-General should be exercised in any case only by taking into account the provisions of Article VII, paragraph 2, of the Constitution, which reserves the right of general supervision to the Conference and the Council. These delegates wished to give to the present Director-General, as an exception, the authority to implement the reorganization proposals specifically set forth in the Director-General's statement to the Conference as supplemented by the information provided (during the absence of the Director-General) by the Deputy Director-General. While recognizing that the Director-General had the power of effecting adjustments necessary to the good operation of the Organization, these delegates felt that the Director-General could not on his own authority effect major structural changes in the Organization or between-chapter transfers in the budget approved by the Conference; otherwise the very notion of the budget would become meaningless.

424. After consideration of these factors and of the varying points of view expressed by the delegations, the Conference unanimously adopted the following resolution:

Resolution No. 47/55

Organization Adjustments

The Conference

Wishing to support and assist the present Director-General in effecting organizational changes aimed at improved and more effective management and in the long run more economical operation;

Taking note of the statement made to the Conference on 10 November 1955 by the Director-General describing his intended re-organization of the internal administration and tire subsequent further explanations given by the Deputy Director-General on 19 November 1955 (C 55/AF/9);

Authorizes the present Director-General until the next regular Session of the Conference:

(i) to proceed, without changing the approved program of work, to make the structural changes described in the above-mentioned statements,

(ii) to effect, as an exception, and notwithstanding the provisions of the Financial Regulations, between-chapter transfers in order to carry out the said changes;

Requests the Director-General to report such action progressively to sessions of the Council.

Use of conference facilities

425. The Conference took note of the report of the Director-General on the action he had taken during 1954 and 1955 to make the FAO Conference facilities available to other organizations in accordance with the request of the Seventh Session of the Conference. The Conference commended the Director-General for the implementation of its request and instructed him to continue on the same lines in 1956 and 1957, subject to the implementation of his own further proposals as developed in conjunction with the Council and the Committee on Financial Control. These proposals were incorporated in the following resolution adopted by the Conference.

Resolution No. 48/55

Conference Facilities

The Conference

Noting that the problem of replacing items of furniture, equipment, and furnishing in the Headquarters conference facilities is related to other phases of budgetary and financial planning currently under consideration by the Committee on Financial Control;

Authorizes the Director-General:

(i) to maintain the Conference Facilities Account on the same basis as heretofore and to carry forward any balance from year to year; and

(ii) to utilize any surplus in the Account for replacement of equipment and furnishings in the Conference rooms as needed;

Requests that the present criteria in determining eligibility for use of the conference accommodations be continued, with the understanding that using organization "will be expected to comply with the minimum standards established by the Organization" governing both (i) the number and categories of staff and (ii) the types of facilities and services required;

Approves that the rates for rental of facilities be established as of 1 January 1956 on the basis proposed by the Director-General and that he be authorized to revise them as appropriate, in line with subsequent developments in utilization of the conference facilities, the rates being kept as low as compatible with the "self support " principle for operation of conference facilities;

Requests the Director-General to continue to consult the Council and the Committee on Financial Control on the policies and rates governing outside use of Conference facilities and to report to the 1957 Conference on the developments during the intervening period.

Compensation plan - reserve fund for service - incurred death and disability

426. In implementation of the Council's approval at its Twenty-Second Session for the establishment of a compensation plan covering staff members in the event of illness, accident or death attributable to the performance of official duties for the Organization, the Conference (noting that no special budgetary provision would be required in 1956 or 1957) authorized the Director-General to establish a Compensation Plan Reserve Fund. and adopted the following Resolution.

Resolution No. 49/55

Compensation Plan Reserve Fund

The Conference

Noting that the Council has approved the establishment by the Director-General, in implementation of Staff Regulation 301.062, of a compensation plan covering staff members in the event of illness, accident or death, attributable to the performance of official duties for the Organization, the said plan being comparable to the plans followed by the United Nations and by other Specialised Agencies; and

Noting that the Council has endorsed funding provisions as recommended by the Committee on Financial Control upon the basis of an actuarial survey;

Authorizes the Director-General:

(i) to establish a Compensation Plan Reserve Fund under Financial Regulation 6.8,

(ii) to credit this Fund with sums realized as a result of related claims under the commercial insurance carried by the Organization,

(iii) to credit to the Fund sums received as a result of a staff member's claim against a third party in instances where the staff member receives benefits under the compensation plan,

(iv) to contribute annually to the Fund 0.19 percent of payroll for staff members covered under the plan,

(v) to credit to the Fund (notwithstanding Financial Regulation 7.1) any interest derived from investment of monies in the Fund, and

(vi) to pay from the Fund any benefits accruing under the compensation plan;

Requests the Director-General to submit the operation of the plan to another actuarial review in 1957 as a basis for proposals to the Council and the Conference regarding the funding of the Compensation Plan Reserve Fund for 1958 and subsequent years.

Geographic distribution of staff

427. Some delegates, referring to Article VIII of the Constitution concerning geographic distribution of staff, emphasized the necessity for achieving a more suitable representation of certain countries on the professional staff, particularly in what were described as the policy-making levels, whether in posts charged to the Regular Program or to Technical Assistance funds. The Conference noted the assurances of the Director-General that the principle of equitable geographic distribution among the professional staff had always been kept in view, as far as possible, and that it would continue to be taken into account in future recruitment for vacancies.

428. The Conference adopted the following resolution

Resolution No. 50/55

Geographic Distribution of Staff

The Conference

Considering that, in accordance with paragraph 3 of Article Vlll of the Constitution, the Director-General shall pay " due respect to the importance of selecting personnel recruited on as wide a geographical basis as possible " as well as efficiency and technical competence;

Considering that, while it accepts the assurances given by the Director-General as satisfactory, it feels that thus far the provision of the said Article with regard to the geographical basis of the staff has not been fulfilled;

Requests the Director-General to take the proper measures to re-establish the necessary equilibrium, bearing, the said principles constantly in mind when filling vacancies that may occur in the various categories of professional staff and any new posts that may be established.

Appreciation of work of the committee on financial control

429. The Conference found that its consideration of the budget for 1956 and 1957 and of other budgetary and financial matters had again been greatly facilitated by the carefully prepared and clearly expressed re ports submitted by the Committee on Financial Control through the Council. The Conference therefore expressed its appreciation of the work done by the Committee on Financial Control during 1954 and 1955.

G. Membership, appointments and elections

Admission of new member - Tunisia
Appointment of independent chairman of the council
Election of council members
Appointment of external auditor
Appointment of staff pension committee

Admission of new member - Tunisia

430. On 23 November, the Conference was informed that an application for membership in the Organization had been submitted by the Government of France on behalf of the Government of Tunisia.

431. On the recommendation of the General Committee, which had reported that the Minister of National Economy of Tunisia, who would be representing his Government on this occasion, had full powers from His Highness the Bey of Tunisia to accept the Constitution as required under Article 11. paragraph 2 of the Constitution, the Conference decided, in a single ballot covering the two questions indicated below, each of which, in conformity with the Rules of Procedure of the Organization, calls for a two-thirds majority of the votes cast: (a) in conformity with Rule II, paragraph 6 of the Rules of Procedure, to add to the Agenda of the Eighth Session the question of the admission of Tunisia to membership in the Organization; and (b) to suspend Rule XIX, paragraphs 1 and 2 of the Rules of Procedure, in order to make it possible to act on Tunisia's application at the current Session. The result of the ballot was: Votes cast - 35; Affirmative - 34; Negative-1.

432. The result of the voting on the application for membership by the Government of Tunisia, taken in accordance with Article II, paragraph 2 of the Constitution and Rule XII, paragraph 7 of the Rules of Procedure, was: Votes cast 37; Affirmative - 33; Negative - 4. Tunisia was accordingly admitted to membership in the Organization as of 25 November 1955. The Conference further decided that in the Scale of Contributions for 1956 and 1957 Tunisia should be assessed at 0.06 percent, and that its contribution for the last quarter of 1955 should be $900.

Appointment of independent chairman of the council

433. Resolution No. 51/55

Appointment of Independent Chairman of the Council

The Conference

Having proceeded to a secret ballot, in accordance with the provisions of Rule Xll;

Declares unanimously that S. A. HASNIE is appointed Independent Chairman of the Council for a period of two years, that is until the end of the regular Session of the Conference to be held in 1957; and

Having noted the recommendations submitted by the General Committee in conformity with Rule XXIV.

Decides that the conditions of appointment, including the allowances attached to the office of the Independent Chairman of the Council, shall be as follows:

(i) An annual allowance of the equivalent of $5,000 to cover representation expenses and secretarial assistance in the Chairman's home station, on the understanding that the Director-General will provide secretarial assistance when the Chairman attends sessions of the Council or Conference. One half of this allowance shall be payable in United States dollars, the balance being payable, in whole or in part, in the currency of the home country of the Chairman, or in Italian fire, according to his desire;

(ii) A per diem allowance at the rate of $20 while the Chairman is absent from his home station on Council business, the allowance being reduced to $10 per diem while the Chairman is in travel status;

(iii) Travel expenses, including the above per diem allowance, shall be defrayed by the Organization, in conformity with its Regulations and existing practices when the Chairman attends sessions of the Council, the Coordinating Committee or the Conference, or when he is invited by the Council or by the Director-General to travel for other purposes.

Election of council members

434. The Conference considered the various provisions of the Rules of Procedure on voting arrangements for election of Council Members and expressed the view that the application of these arrangements have not in the past resulted in a satisfactory situation in view of the fact that they have not made it possible for all Member Nations of the various regions as determined by the Conference to participate in the work of the Council. The Conference therefore decided to adopt the following resolution:

Resolution No. 52/55

Election of Council Members

The Conference

Considering that the provisions of the Rules of Procedure do not operate to allow Member Nations to participate in a satisfactory and equitable manner in the work of the Organization, apart from the Conference, and, consequently, that such Rules should be amended;

Requests the Council to consider the amendments to be made, for this purpose, to the Rules of Procedure and, if need be, to the Constitution, and to present a report containing its conclusions on this matter to the Ninth Session of the Conference;

Decides to suspend for the present Session of the Conference the application of Rule XXIII.2 (d) and Rule Xll.10 (b), (c), (d) and (f) of the Rules of Procedure; and further.

Decides that for the purpose of Council elections to be held during the present Session, candidate nations shall be nominated for a specific region, as determined by the Conference, and not by reference to specific seats.

435. The following procedure was adopted :

(i) The elections shall apply to two groups of eight seats, the first comprising the eight seats to be vacated at the end of the present Conference Session, and the second those which are to become vacant on 31 December 1956.

(ii) The distribution of the two groups by regions is as follows:





  (seats vacated at end or Conference Session) (seat vacated on 31 December 1956)  
Europe 3 seats 1 seat 4
Latin America 2 seats 2 seats 4
Far East 3 seats - 3
Africa - 1 seat 1
Near East - 2 seats 2
North America 2 seats 2  

(iii) There must be a separate ballot for each region but both groups can be combined if it is understood that:

(a) the seats of the first group shall be filled first by the candidates obtaining the most votes;

(b) notwithstanding the above principle' any nation which is re-elected shall keep the seat which it was vacating (in other words the three-year term of office of such nation shall begin on the expiration of its current term)

(iv) Although there must be a separate ballot for each region, a single ballot paper will be utilized to save time, the results of the votes being counted and analyzed separately for each region.

(v) Each delegate will be voting for all seats to be filled, i.e., for a total of 16 seats. His selection for each region must be from among the nations nominated for that region, otherwise his vote for that particular region will be invalid.

(vi) Any ballot containing more votes than the number of seats to be filled in any given region shall be invalid in respect of that particular region, (for instance, in the case of the Near East region, where two seats are to be filled, any ballot paper containing more than two votes for that region would be invalid as regards that region).

(vii) For each region separately:

one half plus one of the Member Nations casting votes for that region shall constitute the majority (i.e., if 70 delegates cast valid ballots, the majority will be 36);

the candidate nations obtaining the highest number of votes shall be declared elected, provided that this number is not less than the majority;

if the first ballot does not result in any of the seats being filled, or if all the seats are not filled, a second ballot shall take place. In both cases, the candidate nation having obtained the lowest number of votes shall automatically be eliminated from the list of candidates;

should it happen that the last two nations have an equal number of votes, a special ballot shall take place to determine which of the two goes out.

(viii) The Chairman shall appoint a returning officer and two scrutineers, the latter being drawn from the Conference Delegations which are not candidates for the elections.

(ix) All ballot papers shall bear the seal of the Organization and before distribution shall be initialled by the returning officer.

(x) All ballot papers shall remain in the custody of the Chairman of the Conference. In the event of any dispute, the Chairman of the Conference and the scrutineers shall hear the dispute and give a ruling there on.

436. The elections were consequently held in accordance with the procedure described above. The following Member Nations were elected:




  (seats vacated at end or Conference Session) (seat vacated on 31 December 1956)
Europe: Belgium Italy
Latin America: Argentina Brazil
  Colombia Mexico
Far East: Japan  
  Philippine Republic  
Africa: - Union of South Africa
Near East: - Iran
North America: - Canada
    United States of America

Appointment of External Auditor

437. The Conference joined the Director-General and the Committee on Financial Control in expressing satisfaction with the valuable services of the External Auditor and of the excellent relations which have continued between the External Auditor and the Organization. It agreed fully, therefore, with the advisability of re-appointing Sir Frank N. Tribe, Comptroller and Auditor General of the United Kingdom, as External Auditor, adopting the following resolution:

Resolution No. 53/55

Appointment of external auditor

The Conference

Noting with satisfaction the valuable and effective services of the present External Auditor,

Decides to re-appoint Sir Frank N. TRIBE, Comptroller and Auditor General of the United Kingdom as External Auditor of the Organization for an additional period of two years commencing with the accounts for the year 1956.

Appointment of staff pension committee

438. The Conference adopted the following Resolution:

Resolution No. 54/55

Staff Pension Committee

The Conference

In accordance with Article XXI of the Joint Staff Pension Regulations,

Appoints as Members from 1 January 1956 through 31 December 1957 of the FAO Staff Pension Committee:

Carolus EYGENRAAM, Agricultural Attaché, Royal Netherlands Embassy, Rome

Walter W. SOHL, Second Secretary, United States Embassy, Rome

Carlos A. FAILLACE VENGOECHEA, Counsellor, Embassy of Colombia, Rome;

and as Alternate Members for the same period:

Shimon YALLON, Commercial Attaché, Legation of Israel, Rome

A. L. SENGER, Commercial Counsellor, Australian Embassy, Washington, D.C.

Anwar NIAZI, Economic and Commercial Counsellor, Egyptian Embassy, Washington, D.C.

439. Since at least one representative of the Conference must be present at meetings of the Pension Committee in order to form a quorum and since representatives of Member Governments are frequently transferred, the Conference authorized the Council to appoint replacements of its representatives on the Staff Pension Committee should any representative resign or be transferred from Rome or Washington, as the case may be.

H. Other matters

Assistance to the Republic of Korea
Verbatim records of the eighth session
Date and place of the ninth session of the conference

Assistance to the Republic of Korea

440. Resolution No. 55/55

Assistance to the Republic of Korea

The Conference

Recognizing the serious concern for and interest of FAO in the importance of the early rehabilitation of Korea's agriculture, forestry and fisheries; and

Noting that at is Seventh Session the Conference adopted Resolution 30/53 recommending urgent representation to the United Nations to make fullest practicable use of the information and recommendations contained in the FAO/UNKRA Report in providing assistance to the Republic of Korea and calling upon all Member Nations of FAO for their co-operation and assistance to achieve these ends; and

Further noting that the present condition in Korea requires continued assistance from various world organizations dedicated to the economic welfare of human beings in making the early rehabilitation of Korea's agriculture, forestry and fisheries possible;

Recommends that renewed and effective representation be made urgently to the United Nations calling for its continued cooperation and assistance to give further effect to the recommendations contained in the above-mentioned Report;

Calls upon all Member Nations of FAO for their effective co-operation and assistance to achieve these ends.

Verbatim records of the eighth session

441. Having regard to the fact that at the current Session verbatim records had been kept not only of the Plenary Meetings but also of the Meetings of the Commissions and that the full translation of these verbatim records would involve a considerable amount of work which would seriously disrupt the publications program of the Organization, the Conference decided that the final issue of the verbatim records should be circulated in their present form, i.e., each statement in the original language only.

Date and place of the ninth session of the conference

442. The Conference decided that its Ninth Session should be held at Headquarters in Rome in November 1957.

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