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Arrangements for Intergovernmental Meetings
 
Background

Article 8, paragraph 2, of the Convention and Article 14, paragraph 2 of the Kyoto Protocol provide that the functions of the secretariat shall be, inter alia, to make arrangements for sessions of the Conference of the Parties (COP), the Conference of the Parties serving as the meeting of the Parties to the Kyoto Protocol (CMP) and its subsidiary bodies and to provide them with services as required. In order to make the necessary arrangements for intergovernmental meetings, the secretariat seeks guidance from Parties.

The Subsidiary Body for Implementation (SBI) traditionally includes on its May/June provisional agenda an item on “Arrangements for Intergovernmental Meetings”. The SBI is generally invited to provide advice or recommendations in the following areas:

1) Preparations for the November/December sessions, including arrangements for the high-level segment and the provisional agendas of the COP and CMP;

2) Preparations for future sessional periods;

3) Organization of the intergovernmental process, including the participation of observer organizations.

For more information see background document pdf-icon FCCC/SBI/2015/2.


Recent Developments
 
Preparations for the November/December sessions, including arrangements for the high-level segment and the provisional agendas of the COP and CMP

With a view to making the necessary arrangements for intergovernmental meetings, the SBI traditionally discusses the arrangements for upcoming COP and CMP sessions.

For the Paris Conference, pursuant to decision 28/CP.19, the Bureau has confirmed that the logistical, technical and financial elements for hosting the sessions are available, in conformity with United Nations General Assembly resolution 40/243. In accordance with the same decision, the Executive Secretary has completed consultations with the Government of France and will sign a Host Country Agreement before SBI 42. Preparations for the sessions are under way and further information will be provided during SBI 42.

Under this agenda item, the draft elements of the provisional agendas of COP 21 and CMP 11, as well as suggestions concerning the organization of the work of the COP, the CMP, the subsidiary bodies and arrangements for the high-level segment will be discussed. Given the political significance of the outcomes of the Paris Conference and its scale, as well as the evolving process of negotiations taking place in the lead-up to and at the Paris Conference, some flexibility in the organization of the work of the sessions, as included in paragraphs 3-23 of background document pdf-icon FCCC/SBI/2015/2.

In Lima, the COP also requested that a high-level event on enhancing the implementation of climate action be convened during COP 21 (Decision 1/CP.20, paragraph 7).

Additional information on preparations for the Paris Conference can be found in background document pdf-icon FCCC/SBI/2015/2.

Future sessional periods

The SBI has traditionally been invited to discuss the issue of hosting future COP and CMP sessions, as well as sessional dates for future sessional periods, with a view to proposing a draft decision on the matter for consideration and adoption at the COP.

Decision 24/CP.20 noted the offer from the Government of Morocco to host COP 22 and CMP 12 in November–December 2016.

In keeping with the principle of rotation among regional groups, the President of COP 23 and CMP 13 would come from the Asia-Pacific States.

The SBI will be invited to discuss these future sessional periods. It will also be invited to recommend dates for the sessional periods in 2020. 

Additional information on future sessional periods can be found in paragraphs 24-29 of background document pdf-icon FCCC/SBI/2015/2.

Organization of the intergovernmental process, including the participation of observer organizations

The SBI has periodically provided Parties with an opportunity to discuss and exchange views on how the organization of their intergovernmental process is functioning and to take decisions on relevant matters, including providing guidance to presiding officers and the secretariat.
 
For example, SBI 32 provided guidance on the number of meetings to be held concurrently, ending meetings by 6p.m. under exceptional circumstances continuing for two to three hours (FCCC/SBI/2010/10, paragraphs 164 and 165).

Parties may want to take stock of certain elements of the intergovernmental process. In addition, SBI 40  and 41 considered issues such as:

(a) The frequency and organization of sessions (including biennial COP/CMPs)
(b) Alternating COP/CMP sessions between host countries and the seat of the secretariat
(c) Arrangements for high-level segments, including engagement of ministers

Background on these issues can be found in the SBI 41 documents pdf-icon FCCC/SBI/2014/11, and pdf-icon FCCC/SBI/2014/12 and paragraphs 121-132 of pdf-icon FCCC/SBI/2014/21.

At SBI 41, the secretariat was requested to provide further information on the above-mentioned issues. Further information can be found in paragraphs 30-48 of background document pdf-icon FCCC/SBI/2015/2.