In 2008, the Ad Hoc Joint Working Group (AHJWG) on enhancing cooperation and coordination among the Basel, Rotterdam and Stockholm conventions recommended the coordinated use of regional centres under the Basel and Stockholm conventions along with the regional offices under UNEP and FAO for the consideration by the COPs of these conventions.
Based on this recommendation the Conference of the Parties to the Basel, Rotterdam and the Stockholm conventions took substantially identical decisions on enhancing cooperation and coordination among these Conventions which is also known as "synergies decision". Coordinated use of regional offices and centres was one of the three issues identified under organizational issues in the field to advance cooperation and collaboration among these Conventions by this decision. Acknowledging the role of regional centres under Basel and Stockholm conventions in supporting Parties, the decision among other things invited Parties and other stakeholders to promote full and coordinated use of regional centres to strengthen the regional delivery of technical assistance under all three Convention; recommended for the selection of few focal centres among the existing centres to facilitate coordinated activities in the region; requested the secretariats of Basel, Rotterdam and Stockholm conventions to initiate pilot projects on the coordinated use of regional centres, also requested the secretariats of all three conventions and the regional centres to exchange information about their capacities and work programmes and invited the global environment facility (GEF) and other relevant international financial institutions and others including donor countries and regional centre host countries to provide financial support necessary for regional centres to carry out projects aimed at this area.
In February 2010, a simultaneous extraordinary meeting of the COPs (ExCOPs) of all three conventions was held for the first time. Substantively identical "omnibus decisions" were adopted simultaneously by the conferences of the Parties to the Basel, Rotterdam and Stockholm conventions. Among others, it encouraged Parties and other stakeholders to promote the full and coordinated use of the regional centres of the Basel and Stockholm conventions to strengthen the regional delivery of assistance for the implementation of the three conventions.
In 2011, the Conference of the Parties of the three conventions took substantially identical synergies decisions. Among others, it approved two joint activities and workplans on regional centres entitled "cooperation and coordination between regional centres and FAO and UNEP regional offices: annual joint meetings" and "South-South cooperation" A detailed workplan to implement this decision has been prepared and is under implementation.