United Nations
Press Release

Preparatory Committee for the World Summit on Sustainable Development
Ministerial Level, Fourth Session, Bali, Indonesia, 27 May - 7 June 2002

Department of Public Information - News and Media Division



Preparatory Committee for the World                                                                                                 ENV/DEV/B/9

 Summit on Sustainable Development                                                                                                 30 May 2002

Fourth Session







              As the final Preparatory Committee for the upcoming World Summit on Sustainable Development continued its session today, government representatives focused their attention on the draft implementation programme to be adopted by the Summit this September in Johannesburg, South Africa. 


              Speaking at the daily briefing held by the Department of Public Information, Lowell Flanders, a senior official with the Summit Secretariat, said “Overall, we are progressing quite well”, and it looked increasingly likely that the working groups assigned to negotiate the text would complete the bulk of their work by tomorrow evening.


              He informed correspondents that the critical issues still requiring further deliberation included trade and finance, natural disasters, oceans, water, sanitation and the establishment of a world solidarity fund for poverty eradication.  The section of the document related to Africa was also being further negotiated, as was the issue of how best to reflect climate change in the text. 


              If agreement wasn’t reached on those issues by the close of this evening, it was possible that Preparatory Committee Chairman Emil Salim (Indonesia) would convene a “committee of the whole” tomorrow morning to try to reach agreement.  He added that it was possible that a few phrases or bracketed text might “go through to Johannesburg” for final consideration.


              Representatives have formed two working groups to advance their negotiations on the Chairman’s paper, which contains the draft (see document A/CONF.199/PC/L.1/Rev.1), with a third group deliberating on a Vice-Chairman’s paper (see document A/CONF.199/PC/L.3) entitled “Institutional Framework for Sustainable Development”, covering among other things, the question of governance. 


Working group I is dealing with the introduction and chapters on poverty eradication; changing unsustainable patterns of consumption and production; and protecting and managing the natural resource base of economic and social development. 


Working group II is covering the chapters on sustainable development in a globalizing world; health and sustainable development; sustainable development of small island developing States; sustainable development initiatives for Africa and means of implementation.


              Also today, side events sponsored by civil society representatives were held on such topics as: mining and sustainable development; new strategies for sustainable energy, healthy forests, better land and water management and food security; and habitat and sustainable development.


              So far, over 3,365 people from 153 countries are participating in the preparatory meeting, including

1,342 government delegates, 931 representatives of non-governmental organizations (NGOs) and 144 journalists.



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