Conference of the Plenipotentiaries

Tehran, November 2003

Conference of Plenipotentiaries for Adoption and Signature of the Framework Convention for the Protection of the Marine Environment of the Caspian Sea.

FINAL ACT

1. The Conference of Plenipotentiaries for Adoption and Signature of the Framework Convention for the Protection of the Marine Environment of the Caspian Sea was convened by the United Nations Environment Programme pursuant to the recommendations of the Eighth Meeting of Government-designated Experts held in Astana, Republic of Kazakhstan, from 14 to 15 July 2003.

2. The Conference of Plenipotentiaries took place in Teheran from 3 to 4 November 2003, at the kind invitation of the Government of the Islamic Republic of Iran.

3. The following States participated in the Conference:

The Republic of Azerbaijan,

The Islamic Republic of Iran,

The Republic of Kazakhstan,

The Russian Federation,

Turkmenistan.

4. Observers from the following intergovernmental organizations also participated:

United Nations Environment Programme,

United Nations Development Programme,

World Bank,

Programme Coordination Unit of the Caspian Environment Programme.

5. In the course of the inaugural ceremony, the Meeting heard a welcoming address by H.E. Masoumeh Ebtekar, Vice President of the Islamic Republic of Iran, and Head of the Department of Environment.

6. On behalf of the United Nations Environment Programme, the Deputy Executive Director Mr. Shafqat Kakakhel addressed the Conference.

7. The Conference elected by acclamation the following officers to serve as its Bureau:

Chairperson:

H.E. Masoumeh Ebtekar, Vice President of the Islamic Republic of Iran and Head of the Department of Environment.

Vice-Chairpersons:

Republic of Azerbaijan - Mr. Husseyn Bagirov, Acting Minister of Ecology and National Resources of the Republic of Azerbaijan,

Republic of Kazakhstan - Mr. Nurlan Iskakov, Vice-Minister of Environmental Protection of the Republic of Kazakhstan,

The Russian Federation - Mr. Ivan Glumov, Deputy Minister of Natural Resources of the Russian Federation,

Turkmenistan - Mr. Makhtumkuli Akmuradov, Deputy Minister of Environmental Protection of Turkmenistan.

8. Mr. Frits Schlingemann, Regional Representative and Director of the Regional Office for Europe of the United Nations Environment Programme was appointed to serve as Executive Secretary.

9. The Conference decided that its Bureau serves also as the Credentials Committee.

10. The Conference was addressed by the following heads of delegations:

Republic of Azerbaijan - Mr. Husseyn Bagirov, Acting Minister of Ecology and National Resources of the Republic of Azerbaijan,

Republic of Kazakhstan - Mr. Nurlan Iskakov, Vice-Minister of Environmental Protection of the Republic of Kazakhstan,

The Russian Federation - Mr. Ivan Glumov, Deputy Minister of Natural Resources of the Russian Federation,

Turkmenistan - Mr. Makhtumkuli Akmuradov, Deputy Minister of Environmental Protection of Turkmenistan.

11. Mr. Hamidreza Ghaffarzadeh, the observer from the Caspian Environment Programme, also intervened.

12. The Conference adopted its Agenda, attached as Annex 1.

13. The document that served as the basis for the deliberations of the Conference was the Draft Framework Convention for the Protection of the Marine Environment of the Caspian Sea.

14. The Conference approved the recommendation of the Credentials Committee to recognize the credentials of the representatives of the participating States.

15. The Conference adopted on 3 November 2003 the Framework Convention for the Protection of the Marine Environment of the Caspian Sea. The Framework Convention was opened for signature by the Caspian littoral States on 4 November 2003. It will remain open for signature at the office of the Depositary in Tehran until 3 November 2004 and afterwards will be open for accession by the Caspian littoral States.

16. The Conference agreed, pending the entry into force of the Framework Convention and with a view to prepare for the first meeting of the Conference of the Parties, to request the Regional Office for Europe of the United Nations Environment Programme to continue to service the Convention process.

17. The Conference agreed that, recalling Article 22 paragraph 7 of the Framework Convention stating that the working languages of the Conference of the Parties shall be English and the State languages of all Contracting Parties, UNEP will provide for the official UN languages. Recognizing the need to have documentation available in all State languages of the Caspian littoral States, the Conference called upon UNEP to make every effort, within available resources, to provide documentation in the other languages.

18. The Conference expressed its gratitude to the Government of the Islamic Republic of Iran for hosting the Conference of Plenipotentia­ries for Adoption and Signature of the Framework Convention for the Protection of the Marine Environment of the Caspian Sea and for acting as the Depository.

19. The text of the Framework Convention for the Protection of the Marine Environment of the Caspian Sea (Tehran Convention) appears in Annex 2 of this Final Act.

IN WITNESS WHEREOF the representatives have signed this Final Act.

DONE AT TEHRAN this fourth day of November, two thousand three, in one original in English and Russian languages, both texts being equally authentic. The original of the Final Act shall be deposited with the Government of the Islamic Republic of Iran.


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