Posted on Fri, 30 Nov 2012, 09:10
The CPM Bureau, Finance Committee and the Strategic Planning Group all met in the week of 8-12 October. This note is to give you brief details of some of the items discussed and otherwise to update you on IPPC/CPM issues.
Following the departure of Lois Ransom from her post in Australia and consequent resignation from all CPM bodies, Dr Kyu-Ock Yim of the Republic of Korea kindly agreed to take the role of chair of the Finance Committee. The group discussed the presentation of financial information to the CPM and heard that whilst there is funding available for the near future, the Trust Fund could be exhausted next year if there are no new contributions. The Secretariat warned that although the IPPC has been generally protected from the type of cuts in core funding experienced by other parts of FAO, this situation is unlikely to continue and there may be some cuts in the next biennium (2014-15) But information on the actual allocations will not be available until late in 2013. The group also considered the development of documents tailored to the interests of donors, using language appropriate to their interests and level of awareness of plant health issues. The Strategic Planning Group was chaired by one of the CPM vice-chairs, Francisco Gutierrez of Belize. Possibly the most potentially contentious item was that on future arrangements for election of the CPM chair and vice-chairs. However, after much amicable discussion a possible way forward was agreed - this would involve a rotation around the 7 FAO Regions followed by a second rotation among the four regions (Africa, Asia, Europe, South American and the Caribbean) which have larger numbers of countries. The possible solution will go forward to CPM for further consideration. The report of the meeting should be available shortly and will give full details.
Regrettably the review of Article XIV bodies seems to be making slow progress; a paper (CCLM 95/12) to be presented to the Committee on Constitutional and Legal Matters expresses disappointment at the number and nature of the responses to the questionnaire, which you may have seen after it was issued soon after the last CPM. There are some possible improvements in the relations between FAO and IPPC suggested, but these are only very small steps towards increased autonomy.
The Secretariat and FAO legal office have been discussing the ISPM 15 logo registration and who should be providing legal advice. This provides the opportunity to re-iterate the advice at CPM-7 that the IPPC does not have the funds to support remaining registrations or re-registrations. Also the IPPC simply does not have the financial resources to fund responses to the legal concerns and risks posed by non registrations in some countries, but this. Members, who have not already done so, should do all they can to register the mark in their countries. FAO Legal had agreed, at CPM 7 evening session, to provide legal advice to those members who follow up to register the mark at the national level. For the latest position, it might be best to contact the Secretariat first; they will pass you on to FAO Legal if appropriate.
The SPG also considered whether and which CPM Rules of Procedure (RoP) need amending in respect of the elections, participation of observers, etc. The Bureau has also considered its own rules of procedure, as requested by CPM, and FAO Legal will advise whether these have any implications for the CPM RoP. Proposals for rule changes will be presented, as necessary, to CPM.
The Bureau meeting followed the SPG and was mainly focussed on the agenda for CPM. Hopefully you''ll have noticed that the dates of CPM are now 8th to 12th April 2013; as last year the meeting will start after lunch on the Monday. The science session will be on the application of Probit 9 in considering the efficacy of new treatments, and in particular whether such as high level of efficacy is justified. The Bureau has some doubts about whether to try to continue with posters as there were only a few last year and they did not attract much interest. But we will continue to reflect on that - any thoughts you have would be very useful. The Bureau also discussed criteria for finding participation in CPM and related meetings - there is a need to ensure that participants play a full role in meetings and the Secretariat will be monitoring this closely and using the information when requests for funding come in.
The Bureau heard the great news and expressed its gratitude that the US Government has offered support in 3 areas - they are funding the study into the creation of a hub to manage E-phyto certification, which if it has potential could save all countries the cost and effort of agreeing numerous bilateral agreements to use E-phyto; they are also providing expertise to work on the implementation of the communications strategy, as well as a staff member under the APO programme to work in the communications/information exchange team in the IPPC Secretariat. This type of assistance, especially if it is long-term, is vital to allow the Secretariat to continue to deliver the work programme CPM has asked for, and the Bureau asks all members to consider how they can support the IPPC.
We also heard the good news that the permanent P-3 post in the standard setting team has been filled and the new staff member, from Brazil, was shortly to start work.
The Bureau selected the members of the Capacity Development Committee and wishes them good fortune in their first meeting in Rome in December. We also heard direct from Geneva that the bid for STDF funding for a project to develop training in order to increase the number of PCE facilitators had been successful and the Bureau expresses its thanks to the Secretariat staff involved in this bid. The Bureau will hold its next meeting in December, using remote means for the first time, meaning that someone is going to have to participate in the middle of their night. The purpose of the meeting will be to help with clearing papers for CPM.
The IPPC Secretariat has produced a range of advocacy material and this is all available to be downloaded and printed so that you can raise awareness about various activities and the importance of this work when meeting government or industry contacts, and in particular when you are seeking donations for the work of the IPPC. The Secretariat continues to look for news stories, good or bad, to illustrate our work, including images of successes or failures. The Secretariat will be making a call for any existing national or regional material, in the near future, that could be more widely used to raise awareness about the IPPC and its work programme. These resources will then be shared with other countries and RPPOs.
Finally, a reminder to members to continue to promote the interests of the IPPC, through educating your representatives, industry, and other stakeholders about the need to continue supporting plant protection and the various IPPC activities in standard setting, capacity building, communications and information exchange, etc. This becomes even more important as the FAO continues to look inward and prioritizes and streamline programs and activities. We can''t take for granted that the IPPC mission will sell itself. Members have to take individual responsibility for informing and educating others about the ongoing need for global cooperation in plant protection. After these meetings the Standards Committee (SC) met and discussed the draft ISPM on Minimizing pest movement by sea containers and conveyances in international trade (2008-001). The SC requested the Secretariat to collate available background information (text and links). The Secretariat has set up a web page on the IPP (https://www.ippc.int/index.php?id=1111165 ). NPPOs are requested to review the information provided and submit their views to SC members no later than 15 January 2013. The SC members will then provide an analysis of these views to the Secretariat for preparation of a CPM discussion paper on the subject.
I apologise for the length of this brief update, but there is a lot going on. Please bring this to the attention of any of your colleagues with IPPC interests, or use it to let others know about our work and how much there is to do.
We look forward to meeting you all again at CPM in April 2013.
Steve Ashby On behalf of the CPM Bureau.