unctad.org | Global Preparatory Meeting on the Mid-Term Review of the Implementation of the Almaty Programme of Action
Global Preparatory Meeting on the Mid-Term Review of the Implementation of the Almaty Programme of Action
08 - 09 July 2008
Room XXVI, Palais des Nations

Key Issues

The purpose of this meeting is to review the recent progress relating to trade facilitation for the benefit of Landlocked and Transit Developing Countries. The outcome of the meeting will contribute to further discussions on the review and implementation of the Almaty Plan of Action for the next five years.

In reviewing the steps taken during the past five years relating to the facilitation of transit operations for overseas trade to and from landlocked countries, it seems important to look at new approaches and solutions directly linked to transit as well as to those that, in the environment surrounding transit itself, have had or may have an impact on how transit is actually operating or may evolve.

Other developments in the transport sector may have important bearings on the way transit operations may be facilitated. A few of the most widely known among these are port developments, intermodal transport operators, and increasing use of information and communication technologies (ICTs) to programme and manage operations and check traffic at border control points.

In planning for future policy actions to be promoted in the framework of the Almaty Programme of Action, these recent operational developments will have to be taken into account. Other potential changes may be coming from the regulatory environment that will emerge at the regional and multilateral levels alike, such as, for example, customs transit regimes.

Finally, specific realities call for tailored solutions and therefore regional and national experiences will be an important part of the solutions and will be discussed and considered as part of the way forward.

Notification

On 8 and 9 July 2008, UNCTAD is organizing a Global Preparatory Meeting on the Mid-Term Review of the Implementation of the Almaty Programme of Action.

The meeting will focus on "Trade Facilitation Opportunities for Landlocked and Transit Developing Countries". It will take place in Room XXVI, Palais des Nations, Geneva, as from 10 a.m. Tuesday, 8 July 2008.

Participation

UNCTAD member States are invited to nominate experts at an early date, no later than 27 June 2008. Experts may be selected from governmental and non-governmental organizations, private entities or academia.

The meeting will be of particular interest to government officials and representatives of the private sector who deal with:

  1. Transit, trade and transport, and related issues

  2. Trade facilitation

  3. Customs modernization
  4. The use of ICT in trade and transport

  5. Trade logistics

Specialized agencies and intergovernmental bodies wishing to participate in the meeting - as well as non-governmental organizations in the general category and those in the special category wishing to participate as observers - are requested to inform the UNCTAD secretariat of the names of their representatives by 27 June 2008.

Background documents and contributed papers

The provisional agenda for the meeting will be circulated shortly. In order to facilitate discussion, the secretariat will prepare a technical note (in English only).

Experts are encouraged to prepare interventions as well as submit written contributions related to their countries´ experiences on the subject under discussion. These papers will be made available to the meeting in the form and language in which they are received.

Logistics

The meeting will take place at the United Nations Office at Geneva, Palais des Nations. Simultaneous interpretation will be provided in the six official languages of the United Nations.

Upon arrival, participants are requested, before entering the Palais des Nations, to collect their badges at the United Nations Security Service, Pregny Gate entrance, 14 avenue de la Paix. The Security Service is open non-stop from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. Because of the security measures in force, participants are strongly advised to arrive before 9 a.m. in order to complete entry procedures in good time and proceed to the meeting in the E Building (Bâtiment E) of the Palais. Participants are requested to carry a passport or similar national identity card with them. Taxis are not allowed to enter the grounds of the Palais des Nations and visitors will therefore be dropped off at the requested entrance gates. Furthermore, luggage may not be brought into the buildings unless the Security Service gives special clearance.

Further information and contact details

Nominations and related communications concerning representation at the meeting should be sent to the UNCTAD secretariat, Intergovernmental Affairs and Outreach Service, Palais des Nations, CH-1211 Geneva 10; fax: + 41 (0) 22 917 0214; e-mail: correspondence@unctad.org.

Enquiries concerning substantive issues should be addressed to Mr. Poul Hansen, coordinator of the meeting in the substantive division (Division on Technology and Logistics); office E.7043, Palais des Nations, CH-1211 Geneva 10; tel: +41 (0) 22 917 3258; fax: +41 (0) 22 917 0050; e-mail: poul.hansen@unctad.org.

(signed)

Supachai Panitchpakdi
Secretary-General of UNCTAD
10 June 2008


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