Ministerial talks on climate change set for 2 – 4 November 1999 in Bonn


BONN, 11 June 1999 (UNFCCC) – Two weeks of talks on the UN Climate Change Convention and its Kyoto Protocol concluded here today after extensive debate on the technical and political issues that must still be resolved to advance the implementation of the Convention and to ensure that the Protocol will be fully operational when it enters into force.

The talks are to continue at the Fifth Session of the Conference of the Parties to the Convention, to be held in Bonn from 25 October to 5 November. COP-5 will be attended by ministers from around the world during a high-level segment from midday on 2 November to midday on 4 November.

The main outstanding issues must be finalized at the COP’s Sixth Session, which will take place in late 2000 or early 2001. An offer by the Government of the Netherlands to host COP-6 in The Hague was welcomed by the participants. Many governments are awaiting the outcome of this vital conference before ratifying the Protocol and thus finalizing their acceptance of it.

“Technical work on many of the methodologies and procedures needed for implementing the Convention and the Protocol is advancing well,“ said Michael Zammit Cutajar, the Convention’s Executive Secretary. “But fundamental political and policy decisions must still be taken on the ability of developed countries to use emissions trading and investments in developing country projects to meet their Kyoto targets. These decisions will affect the costs of cutting emissions, so the stakes are high.“

Over the past two weeks, government officials have paid a great deal of attention to the challenge of how the Protocol’s three “mechanisms“ for emissions trading, clean development, and joint implementation should function. National and group positions have been clarified, paving the way for more detailed discussions and the drafting of texts at the next COP.

A closely linked issue is the development of credible compliance procedures. Delegates have agreed on some of the guiding principles for a compliance system and have produced a questionnaire for obtaining the written views of governments in time for COP-5.

The next steps in the work programme on methodological issues have also been agreed. Key issues include how developed countries should report their greenhouse gas inventories, how to estimate net emissions, and how to improve the accounting for emissions from bunkerfuels for international transport.

The meetings were attended by some 1,500 participants from 147 governments and 152 intergovernmental and non-governmental organizations.

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NOTE TO JOURNALISTS: For information on accreditation and press facilities at COP-5, please contact Axel Wustenhagen at (+49-228) 815 2770, fax (+49-228) 815 1999, e-mail [email protected]. For interviews or additional information please contact Michael Williams at (+41-22) 917 8242/44, fax (+41-22) 797 3464, e-mail: [email protected]. Official documents are available on the Internet at