The International Assessment and Review (IAR) process was established under the Cancun Agreements. The aim of IAR is to promote the comparability of efforts among all developed country Parties; build confidence with regard to developed countries meeting their 2020 quantified economy-wide emission limitation and reduction targets; and enable Parties to discuss the review results of individual Parties.
The IAR process is conducted under the Subsidiary Body of Implementation in two steps: a technical review of the national reports of each developed country, followed by the Multilateral Assessment of the progress towards achieving the economy-wide target by developed country Parties. The IAR process forms the foundation for the enhanced transparency framework of action and support under the Paris Agreement.
An important part of the transparency system under the Convention is the review of Annex I Parties National Communications (NCs) and Biennial Reports (BRs).
At COP20 in Lima Parties adopted the “Guidelines for the technical review of information reported under the Convention related to greenhouse gas inventories, biennial reports and national communications by Parties included in Annex I to the Convention”. <13/CP.20.>
These review guidelines provide a solid foundation for the technical reviews of national communications and biennial reports. Reviews are coordinated by the secretariat and conducted by international expert review teams (ERTs). The purpose of the review by ERTs is to provide a thorough and comprehensive technical assessment of the implementation of the Convention by Annex I Parties, and to ensure that the COP has sufficient information to carry out its responsibilities to review the implementation of the Convention.
Multilateral Assessment is undertaken for each developed country Party based on the Party's technical review report, the biennial report, the national GHG inventory, including the national inventory report and the national communication; and any supplementary information on the achievement of the Party's 2020 target.
There are three stages to MA:
- the preparation for the MA before the SBI working group session - encompassing a three-month "questions and answers" period between the Parties under the Convention, submitted via the MA Portal;
- the international assessment during the SBI working group session, where Parties make a presentation followed by a Q&A session;
- and the completion of the Party record after the SBI working group session, which includes a summary report.
The Q&A among Parties takes place via the MA portal.