Review of Non-Governmental Organization (NGO) Participation in the Work of the Executive Committee and its Standing Committee
EXECUTIVE COMMITTEE OF THE HIGH COMMISSIONER'S PROGRAMME
30 November 1998
1. In accordance with the decision taken by the Standing Committee at its eighth meeting in June 1997 (A/AC.96/888), all meetings of the Standing Committee held in 1998 were open to NGO observers. On average, some thirty NGOs registered to participate at each of the four meetings, including one or two focal points representing NGOs from the region under review at each meeting. Throughout the year, the participation of NGOs as observers followed the procedure outlined in the June 1997 Standing Committee decision. Accordingly, NGOs made nine joint interventions under nine agenda items.
2. The NGO community has expressed interest in continuing its observer participation in the Standing Committee meetings. In order for NGOs to participate in the first meeting of the new year in February, it is suggested that the Standing Committee take a decision on extending NGO observer participation through 1999 and 2000. A draft decision is attached, which provides that at the end of the year 2000, the modalities for NGO participation would again be reviewed by the Standing Committee.
Annex: Draft Decision of the Standing Committee on Non-Governmental (NGO) Observer Participation in the Work of the Executive Committee of the High Commissioner's Programmes and its Standing Committee
The Standing Committee,
Recalling its decision on observer participation in the work of the Executive Committee and its Standing Committee (A/AC.96/888), and having completed the first year of NGO observer participation,
(a) Recognizes the contribution of NGOs as important partners in UNHCR's humanitarian work on behalf of refugees;
(b) Decides that:
(i) The decision endorsing the observer participation of NGOs will be extended for the years of 1999 and 2000;
(ii) The participation of NGOs as observers will continue to follow the procedure established by the Standing Committee decision (A/AC.96/888);
(c) Further decides that these arrangements will be reviewed after the fifty-first Executive Committee session.