Remarks prepared by Director-General Koïchiro Matsuura for the second ordinary session of the Intergovernmental Committee for the Protection and Promotion of the Diversity of Cultural Expressions are now available on the UNESCO website. Ms. Françoise Rivière, Assistant Director-General for Culture, delivered the address at the opening of the session on December 8, 2008.
In it, the Director-General welcomed ministers, Committee members, numerous representatives from parties to the Convention, and observers, emphasizing that the presence of the latter “once again demonstrates the international community’s keen interest in preparing operational directives for this important Convention [on the Protection and Promotion of the Diversity of Cultural Expressions].” Mr. Matsuura also thanked civil society representatives who were present for the occasion, noting that “the perspective and experience they bring to these discussions are invaluable.”
Mr. Matsuura then told attendees, “In light of the mandate that you were given by the Conference of Parties in June 2007, your session once again has a very formidable agenda. After having adopted draft operational directives for Convention articles 7, 8, 11, 15, and 17, you must now review draft directives for articles 12, 13, 14, and 18, and begin discussing the issue of ‘preferential treatment’ (Article 16).”
We suggest reading the Director-General’s remarks so as to appreciate the insight on various agenda items that he shared with participants before discussions got under way.