Informal gathering of the 1997 UN Watercourses Convention (CLOSED MEETING – Only for invited participant)
The 1997 United Nations Convention on the Law of Non-navigational Uses of International Watercourses (1997 UN Watercourses Convention) has entered into force on 17 August 2014. The first unofficial meeting of the Parties to the Convention will be hosted by UNESCO in its Head-Quarters in Paris, from 15 to 16 September 2015. This gathering is organized by Finland, Germany and Netherlands in coordination with the UNESCO International Hydrological Programme (UNESCO-IHP) in order to discuss further implementation steps.
The UN Watercourses Convention is a first global framework instrument which provides a common legal language, a commonly agreed dispute settlement mechanism and a shared understanding on transboundary water cooperation. Nevertheless, there are other international legal instruments in force which are complementary to the UN Watercourses Convention. The inviting institutions (German Federal Ministry of Environment, Nature Conservation, Building and Nuclear Safety; Dutch Ministry of Infrastructure and Environment and Finnish Ministry of Agriculture and Forestry) take the initiative of coordinating this milestone event that will gather the State-Parties for the first time to discuss how to coordinate and harmonize the implementation of the Convention. It is also expected that this meeting will lead to growing awareness of the benefits of this global framework instrument. The organizers would also like to give other countries, the relevant UN agencies, international organizations and NGOs, the opportunity to express their interest in the Convention and to understand its implications. The meeting will be held on working level, with participants working as directors, head of units or experts in their organizations.