Statement of the G-77 and China during the 28th session of
the Preparatory Commission for the Comprehensive Nuclear-Test-Ban Treaty Organization
(15-22 June 2007), delivered by H.E. Ambassador Mr. Sayed Galal Elamin, Permanent
Representative of Sudan
At the outset, let me congratulate you on your assumption as the Chairperson
of the Preparatory Commission and express the sincere appreciation of the State
Signatories of the Group of 77 and China in seeing you chairing the 28th Session
of the PrepCom. The Group believes that under your stewardship, discussions
will lead to fruitful conclusions and I assure you of our full cooperation.
2. The Group would also like to thank the Executive Secretary for his oral
and written reports and would like to express its views on the following agenda
items, which will be considered during the present meeting of the Preparatory
AGENDA ITEM 3: CONSIDERATION OF THE REPORT OF WORKING GROUP B
3. The Group would like to thank Mr Hein Haak, Chairperson of Working Group
B for presenting the report of the 28th Session of WGB and takes note of it.
4. Regarding the re-examination of the duration and organization of WGB meetings,
including avoiding the holding of parallel sessions, as mandated by the PrepCom,
the Group thanks the Chair of Working Group B (WGB) for his efforts including
conducting informal consultations with the Group. The Group expects that this
issue be finalized through presenting a comprehensive and acceptable proposal
to the next PrepCom meeting in November. The Group has expressed its viewpoint
on this issue in the previous WGB meeting and expects that the concerns raised,
in particular regarding the reduction of the number and duration of the meetings
and avoiding parallel sessions will be reflected in the next paper of the WGB
5. The Group shares the view of WGB in welcoming the participation
of three technical experts from developing countries in WGB meetings and looks
forward to the continuation and enhancement of the pilot project, in particular
through wider participation of developing countries, more voluntary contributions,
and the assurance of sustainable and predictable financial support by establishing
a reserve fund.
6. The Group takes note of the On-Site Inspection (OSI) Integrated
Field Exercise (IFE), which is to be held in Kazakhstan in 2008, and shares
the view of WGB that close cooperation with States Signatories is needed in
order to achieve the agreed objectives of the IFE. In this regard the Group
calls on the PTS to take into account the balance in selecting the participants
as potential inspectors for this exercise, in particular from developing countries.
The Group also calls on the PTS to report on the last status of the selection
of the participants and the related process, to this PrepCom meeting.
the procedure for the changing of responsibility for an IMS station from one
State Signatory to another, the Group proposes that Working Group A (WGA) consider
the legal and administrative aspect of this issue and report back to the PrepCom.
AGENDA ITEM 4: CONSIDERATION OF THE REPORT OF WORKING GROUP A
8. The Group wishes to extend its appreciation to Ambassador Abbdulkadir
Bin Rimdap, Chairperson of WGA for presenting the report on the 31st Session of
The Group reiterates its concern that the overall representation of States Signatories
in the Provisional Technical Secretariat (PTS) remains unbalanced. It is critical
that the PTS continue its efforts to increase the presence of staff members
from developing countries in the PTS. The Group calls upon the Secretariat to
give due attention to this criteria in the recruitment process of new staff
members who will replace those who have reached their service limit. The Group
expresses its concern that some countries are over represented in the PTS and
believes that a limitation should be put on the recruitment of the staff for
each of the States Signatories.
10. The Group urges the PTS to observe the policy
of establishing a seven-year service limit for Professional and internationally
recruited General Service staff members. The Group reiterates its view that
it is important that the seven-year limit be strictly adhered to in spirit and
AGENDA ITEM 5: REVIEW OF THE ADVISORY GROUP REPORT
The Group takes note of the reports of the 28th meetings of the Advisory Group
and commends Mr André Gué for presenting them. The Group has expressed its detailed
views on this report in the WGA meeting, therefore it now limits itself to the
12. The Group believes that the current gap in the financial
rules and regulations regarding the status of savings resulting from the cancellations
of the unliquidated obligations (ULOs) needs to be addressed and therefore proposes
that the Advisory Group be tasked to work on this issue and report back to WGA
and the PrepCom respectively. The Group also proposes that the Advisory Group
review the financing mechanism of the Capital Investment Fund (CIF) including
putting an expiry date for the contracts and a time limit on carry forwards.
13. Regarding the station by station cost estimate, the Group believes that
in the improvement of this new approach on budgeting for the stations and defining
the criteria for the costs, the "provisional operation" costs of the stations
should be taken into account, in which, further to annual cost estimates, the
daily and monthly cost of each station be evaluated.
14. The Group takes note
that, as estimated by the PTS, the total cost of the International Monitoring
System (IMS) network would be US$328 million, which presents an increase of
$43 million over the previous projection of $285 million. In this regard, the
Group would like to know how much of this $43 million has already been spent
and how much is going to be spent in the future, and how much has already been
invested in the IMS.
AGENDA ITEM 6: REVIEW OF THE INITIAL DRAFT 2008 PROGRAMME
AND BUDGET PROPOSALS Chairperson,
15. Regarding the draft Budget proposals for
2008 as contained in document CTBT/PTS/INF.880, the Group expressed its general
views in the joint meeting of WGA and WGB on 21 May 2007 and at the 31st Session
of WGA. However, the Group would like to reiterate its position as follows:
16. The Group believes that there is a need to review the Medium Term Plan (MTP)
and take a realistic and reasonable approach towards the Programme and Budget
in general, rather than an ambitious or conservative approach. To avoid future
budgetary challenges, we need to review and change our assumptions, taking into
account the following realities, as elaborated before:
1. The current well advanced
status of the verification system,
2. The mandate of the PrepCom on the provisional
operation of the system,
3. The actual prospect of entry into force of the Treaty,
4. The financial burden on States Signatories.
17. The Group believes that
if this realistic and reasonable approach is taken, the PTS will be relieved
from the budget burden. The PTS would also not be under pressure regarding the
human resources and difficulties in the turnover of the staff.
18. The Group
also shares the view of WGB and concurs that a balance should be established
between all elements of the verification regime, namely IMS, International Data
Centre (IDC) and OSI.
19. Regarding the assessed contributions, the Group is
concerned about the non-payment by a major contributor of its financial obligations
to the PrepCom and notes that during the recent years a large amount has not
been paid by this major contributor. Such a situation, if it continues, would
create a serious challenge to the CTBT verification regime and jeopardize the
future of the whole system. In this regard the Group urges this State Signatory
to reconsider its political position and selective approach towards the Treaty,
and support fully the PrepCom. Chairperson,
20. The Group re-emphasizes that
the zero real growth budget is most important to the Group and should be applied
to the 2008 Programme and Budget. In the light of the above mentioned realities
and review of the assumptions, the Group even expects that the Budget for 2008
and for the following years to be decreased, in particular, in light of the
flexibilities showed by the Group and resulted in a recommendation by WGA that
near $8 million savings as a result of cancellation of ULOs in the CIF be used
for the 2008 Programme and Budget.
21. In conclusion, the Group expresses that
at this stage it is not in a position to accept the proposed 2008 Programme
and Budget and expects that the above mentioned concerns as well as those expressed
in previous WGA and WGB meetings by the Group be reflected in the next draft
Programme and Budget Proposal for the second round of its consideration.
ITEM 8: APPOINTMENTS AND ELECTIONS 22. Concerning the Chairmanship of Working
Group A, the G-77 and China commends Mr Abbdulkadir Bin Rimdap for his efficient
chairmanship of WGA during the past two years.
23. The Group believes that a
balance should be established on the chairmanship of WGA and WGB in which at
least one chairmanship be entrusted to developing countries.
24. In this regard
the Group expresses its concern that despite of the Group's call, no balance
has yet been established in the WGB Friends of the Chair as potential candidates
for the WGB chairmanship. In this context the Group believes that the rotation
policy should be applied to the Friends of the Chair of WGB. The Group expects
also that a balance to be established on the Task Leaders in WGB and more opportunity
be given to the developing countries in this regard.
25. The Group strongly
rejects the new proposed criteria that a regional Group has recently raised,
in which it is proposed that the PMOs' chairmanship, as well as the recruitment
and ordinary extension of the contracts of the staff in the PTS, be linked to
the payment of assessed contributions.
26. Regarding the Executive Secretary's
recommendation for the reappointment of the Director of IDC, the Group thanks
Mr Lassina Zerbo for his work as the Director of the IDC during the past three
years and would like to express its full support for his reappointment.
The Group would like to express the view that regarding future reappointment
of the Directors, the States Signatories should be informed well in advance.
AGENDA ITEM 11.1 REQUEST FROM PALESTINE FOR OBSERVER STATUS WITH THE COMMISSION
28. The Group recalls the decision of the Commission at its 27th
Session to place this important issue on the agenda of the 28th Session of the
Preparatory Commission. The Group regrets that after one and half years, and
three PrepCom meetings, the Preparatory Commission has still not reached a decision
on this issue only because of the unjustified objection of one State Signatory.
In view of the fact that Palestine has been accorded observer status in other
United Nations Organisations, the Group is of the view that its request to receive
this recognition at the Preparatory Commission should not be treated any differently.
29. The Group therefore reiterates its strong support for the request by Palestine
to be granted observer status within the Preparatory Commission for the CTBTO
and believes that there is no justification for further postponement of this
issue and this session of the Preparatory Commission should conclude this issue
by granting the observer status to Palestine. ANY OTHER BUSINESS Chairperson,
30. The Group is concerned that as indicated by the PTS the budget for financing
the pilot project for participation of experts from developing countries in
the technical meetings of the PMOs, in particular WGB meetings, is only sufficient
for 2007. The Group recalls the decision of the PrepCom in its 27th meeting
that the PTS report to the PrepCom "shall include also recommendations to the
PrepCom on how to improve project performance, including sufficient and sustainable
funding". The Group also recalls the appeal of the PrepCom to the States Signatories
to provide voluntary contributions for this project, and inviting the Executive
Secretary to utilize his good offices to this end. In this regard the Group
appreciates the recent financial contribution provided by Morocco to this pilot
31. In this context, the Group would like to remind the deficit in the participation
of developing countries in WGB meetings as recognized by the PrepCom and its expectation
that the participation of at least nine experts be financed through this project.
Hence, the Group calls on the PTS to work on a feasible proposal for predictable
and sustainable funding for this project including creation of a reserve fund
to ensure its continuity.
32. Regarding the appointment of the new
External Auditor for 2009-2010, the Group takes note that the previous External
Auditors have been selected from the same Group. In this context, the Group believes
that every effort should be made to encourage nominating candidates from other
regions, in particular from developing countries, in the future.
33. The Group would also like to express its concern that the working documents
of the PrepCom and WGA have not been translated into all UN official languages.
The Group requests the PTS to ensure translation of all working documents of at
least the PrepCom and WGA sessions well in advance of any related meetings. Thank