The objective of the regional preparatory meetings is to contribute to successful meetings of the conferences of the Parties (COPs) in 2017 by giving regions the possibility to consult each other in advance of the COPs, consider meeting documents, discuss substantive matters, identify regional priorities and challenges, and facilitate the preparation of regional positions.
In order to assist parties in preparing for the back-to-back meetings, the conferences of the Parties in 2015 requested the Executive Secretary to support, within available resources, regional meetings to assist regional preparatory processes, coordinated with other regional meetings (decisions BC-12/23, RC-7/13 and SC-7/31). The regional preparatory meetings for the 2017 COPs will be held in a similar manner as the 2015 meetings.
The dates, venues and organizers of the meetings are as follows:
- Asia-Pacific: 6-8 March 2017 in Bangkok, Thailand; organized with support from the BCRC/SCRC Indonesia;
- Africa: 14-16 March 2017 in Dakar, Senegal; organized with support from the BCRC/SCRC Senegal;
- Central and Eastern Europe: 21-23 March 2017 in Riga, Latvia; hosted by the government of Latvia and organized with support from the BCRC Slovakia;
- Latin America and the Caribbean: 28-30 March 2017 in Sao Paulo, Brazil; organized with support from the SCRC Brazil.
These preparatory meetings will be organized in close cooperation with the bureaux members of the concerned regions. The programmes of the meetings are currently being consulted on with the bureaux members; logistical preparations with the organizers are ongoing. Further information on the regional preparatory meetings, as they become available, will be posted on this web section.
A generous financial contribution to the meetings has been received from Switzerland for all four meetings.
All four meetings will be organized in close cooperation with the interim Secretariat of the Minamata Convention and will discuss relevant issues of common interest to the four conventions. Additionally, the interim Secretariat of the Minamata Convention is organizing a one-day working session back-to-back with the regional preparatory meetings to address regional specific issues related to ratification and early implementation of the Minamata Convention (e.g. artisanal and small-scale gold mining, contaminated sites, etc.).