Over the past two and a half days, the Conference of Parties, the Convention’s supreme decision-making body, adopted its rules of procedure and elected the 24 members of the Intergovernmental Committee that will operate under its supervision. The States Parties elected onto the Committee are: Albania, Austria, Brazil, Burkina Faso, Canada, China, Croatia, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Guatemala, India, Lithuania, Luxembourg; Mali, Mauritius, Mexico, Oman, Saint Lucia, Senegal, Slovenia, South Africa and Tunisia. In order to ensure the geographical representation of all regions, and in conformity with agreements made during the meeting, several seats on the Committee were reserved for developing countries. Half of the countries on the committee will serve for only two years; the other half will have a mandate of four years.
The Intergovernmental Committee will be responsible, among other things, for promoting the objectives of the Convention, encouraging and ensuring its implementation and preparing operational directives. It will hold its first meeting in December 2007 in Ottawa (2007).
The Convention aims to reinforce the links between culture and sustainable development and establishes an innovative approach to international cooperation. It reaffirms respect for human rights and fundamental freedoms, equal dignity of cultures, equitable access and openness of cultures to the world. It recognizes the distinctive nature of cultural goods and services as vehicles of identity, values and meaning. It therefore recognizes the sovereign right of States to elaborate cultural policies to promote the diversity of cultural expressions within their territories, and to encourage equitable access to all cultural expressions in the world. Parties to the Convention are committed to facilitating cultural exchange within their borders as well as with other countries.
With this Convention, UNESCO disposes of a comprehensive set of standard-setting instruments, comprising seven conventions covering cultural diversity in all of its manifestations, and especially the two pillars of culture: heritage - tangible and intangible - and contemporary creativity.
- More information