As requested by the Bureau of the C.P.R. at its meeting of 10 March 2003, I wish to brief the C.P.R. on the current status of our preparations for the Nineteenth Session of the Governing Council of UN-HABITAT which will be held at Gigiri from 5 to 9 May 2003.
First, I am pleased to inform you that all the 187 member states of the United Nations have been invited to the session and that, pursuant to United Nations General Assembly resolution 53/180, representatives of local authorities, Parliamentarians, non-governmental organizations and the private sector from around the world have also been invited. Also participating will be the relevant United Nations organizations and intergovernmental organizations.
Among the key issues that will be considered by the Governing Council at this session are the actions which need to be taken by the international community as a follow-up to the Special Session of the United Nations General Assembly for an Overall Review and Appraisal of the Implementation of the Habitat Agenda which was held in New York from 6 to 8 June 2001. In addition, the session will consider two special themes on: (i) Urban development strategies and shelter strategies favouring the poor; and (ii) The rural dimension of sustainable urban development. The session will also consider and adopt the Work Programme of UN-HABITAT for the biennium 2004-2005 and the proposed Budget for the United Nations Habitat and Human Settlements Foundation for the same biennium.
In this regard, I am pleased to inform you that practically all the pre-session documents for the Nineteenth Session of the Governing Council have been distributed to governments and they have also been posted on the UN-HABITAT website in all the official UN languages. The few remaining documents will be distributed and also posted on the website in the very near future. These few remaining documents include the Report on the work of the C.P.R. during the inter-sessional period, the Report of the C.P.R. on the preparation of draft resolutions for the 19th Session of the Governing Council and the Report of the C.P.R. on the preparation of the Rules of Procedure of the Governing Council. These three reports will be finalized by the Secretariat, in consultation with the Bureau of the C.P.R., after to-day's meeting of the C.P.R.
As requested by the Bureau of the C.P.R., advance copies of a total of 25 pre-session documents were sent electronically to Permanent Representatives, in January and February, so as to enable the two Working Groups of the C.P.R. to start their preparations of the draft resolutions for GC-19. A report on the progress of work of these two Working Groups will be given to the C.P.R. this morning by the Chairpersons of the two Working Groups. The specific issues on which the Secretariat is expecting specific decisions from the Governing Council are contained in the 13 draft resolutions which will be reported on by the Chairmen of the two Working Groups.
In addition to these 13 draft resolutions, the Secretariat has received, so far, one additional draft resolution from the Permanent Mission of the Russian Federation entitled "Countries with economies in transition" which the Secretariat has distributed to all the Permanent Missions. We have also received an indication from the delegation of Spain that they will be submitting to the Governing Council a draft resolution in support of the Second Session of the World Urban Forum. As in the past, we expect to receive other draft resolutions from other delegations between now and the opening of the Governing Council and these will be distributed to the Permanent Missions as soon as they are received.
With regard to the organizational arrangements for the session the Permanent Representatives may wish to take note of the following: