Standing Committee’s clearing house
At its 50th meeting (Geneva, March 2004), the Standing Committee established a clearing house to refer technical implementation issues to the appropriate CITES body.
As outlined in document SC50 Doc. 10, Annex 2 (Rev. 1), the clearing house comprises two officials nominated by Parties and appointed by the Standing Committee to advise on the handling of technical implementation issues referred to the latter. The current members of the clearing house are Mr Bruce Weissgold (United States of America) and Mr Colman O'Criodain (Ireland).
The Standing Committee has also established a referral procedure describing how issues are submitted to the clearing house, the course of actions the clearing house follows when examining these issues, and the various possible outcomes. In short, the clearing house needs to analyse and categorize the problem as being of an administrative, operational or technical, policy, or scientific nature, and submit to the Standing Committee a recommendation on the body that should deal with the issue and the desired outcome. The definition of the different categories as well as the detail of the referral procedure are provided below.
GLOSSARY OF TERMS
Clearing-house – two officials nominated by Parties and appointed by the Standing Committee to advise on the handling of technical implementation issues referred to the latter. These persons do not hold formal meetings and all business is handled by email or by telephone. They refer their recommendations to the Chairman of the Standing Committee for a final decision, in consultation with the Committee members if appropriate.
1. An issue is referred to the Standing Committee by the Conference of the Parties, one of the permanent committees, a Party or the Secretariat.
2. The Chairman of the Standing Committee refers the issue to the clearing house.
3. The clearing-house prepares the following for the Chairman of the Standing Committee:
4. The Chairman of the Standing Committee should consider the recommendations for referral to one of the CITES bodies. If the Chairman of the Standing Committee is in doubt regarding the referral, he should refer the issue back to the clearing-house for a more thorough analysis and a later submission to the next meeting of the Standing Committee for a final decision.
5. Issues referred by this process to a CITES body should be dealt with according to its practices and rules of procedure. For example, an ad hoc working group may be formed or the Secretariat may be requested to engage a consultant to address the issue.
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