Matters requiring action by the Board in the follow-up to the fourteenth session of the Conference

Action taken by the Trade and Development Board 2018
Matters requiring action by the Board in the follow-up to the fourteenth session of the Conference
Decision 540 (LXV)
1172nd plenary meeting
8 Jun 2018

The Trade and Development Board,

Recalling the progress made with the Nairobi Maafikiano, adopted at the fourteenth session of the United Nations Conference on Trade and Development,

Reaffirming paragraph 94 of the Nairobi Maafikiano, which calls for the revitalization of the existing intergovernmental machinery of UNCTAD to better support implementation of the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development,

Recalling the modalities for phase II adopted at the sixty-sixth executive session of the Trade and Development Board,

Recognizing that the Trade and Development Board should strengthen its decision-making and policy function and its governance function,

Recalling the importance of ensuring geographical diversity and gender balance in intergovernmental meetings,

  1. Emphasizes the importance of member States’ engagement in constantly improving the intergovernmental machinery of UNCTAD;
  2. Stresses the importance of promoting concrete and actionable outcomes with a development perspective throughout the intergovernmental machinery;
  3. Encourages the development of stronger links between intergovernmental processes in Geneva and New York, as well as reinforcement of dialogue within the wider United Nations system;
  4. Encourages an improvement in the communication of deliberations, outcomes and proposals across the intergovernmental machinery;
  5. Recalls that discussions in the annual sessions of the Trade and Development Board should provide high-level guidance for the work of UNCTAD and, as appropriate, contain agreed conclusions specifically addressing the UNCTAD contribution to the accomplishment of the Sustainable Development Goals and the broader trade and development agenda; to this end, background documentation for the Trade and Development Board, including the respective flagship publications and outcomes of relevant expert meetings, should contain specific policy recommendations for the consideration of the Board;
  6. Decides to establish a high-level segment, not exceeding two days, during the annual session of the Trade and Development Board, which should focus on persistent and emerging economic challenges from a development perspective;
  7. Stresses that the topic of the high-level segment and the agenda of the annual session should be decided in the previous session of the Trade and Development Board and be consistent with the UNCTAD mandate;
  8. Stresses the importance of the implementation and follow-up of the decisions taken at the Trade and Development Board;
  9. Requests that the UNCTAD secretariat, in consultation with member States, develop and maintain up to date a four-year, forward-looking and integrated schedule of planned meetings of the UNCTAD intergovernmental machinery that includes, where possible, agendas with standing items and agreed topics, consistent with the requirements established by the rules of procedures of the respective bodies, and especially taking into account the quadrennial conference, and the methods of work of the different bodies, without prejudice to additional, supplementary and urgent agenda items;
  10. Decides to review the proposed terms of reference of the Working Party on the Strategic Framework and the Programme Budget and to consider them during the October segment of the sixty-fifth session of the Trade and Development Board, without prejudging the final decision-making capacity on budget matters by the competent bodies in New York;
  11. Reaffirms the importance of the work of the intergovernmental groups of experts, which include the Intergovernmental Working Group of Experts on International Standards of Accounting and Reporting, the Intergovernmental Group of Experts on Competition Law and Policy, Intergovernmental Group of Experts on Consumer Protection Law and Policy, Intergovernmental Group of Experts on E-commerce and the Digital Economy and the Intergovernmental Group of Experts on Financing for Development;
  12. Recognizes the need to improve the outcomes of the multi-year and single-year expert meetings, including their relevance to the UNCTAD mandate and a greater focus on concrete outcomes, such as recommendations, guidelines and policy tools;
  13. Reaffirms paragraph 95 of the Nairobi Maafikiano, which determines that expert meetings should be improved by ensuring, through and within all available means, more participation of experts from developing countries, including through the use of innovative methods and technologies;
  14. Calls for meetings to be webcast, in order to disseminate further the information collated within the multi-year expert meetings and single-year expert meetings and to greatly enhance the impact of decisions and policy recommendations produced by these meetings;
  15. Requests the Secretary-General of UNCTAD to make sustained efforts to attract contributions, from public and private sources, to the fund that finances the participation of experts and to inform member States about the availability and disbursement of the resources in the fund, and encourages member States to contribute to the fund;
  16. Reaffirms the role of the secretariat in supporting the intergovernmental machinery, such as by conducting topic research and providing conference material beforehand in a timely manner;
  17. Requests the secretariat to report on the progress made towards implementation of this decision during the next regular session of the Trade and Development Board.