Australian Permanent Mission and Consulate-General
Switzerland, Liechtenstein


13th Meeting of State Parties
Agenda 10: Assessing the Conventions Cooperation and Assistance Machinery
Statement by Australia

3 December 2013

Statement delivered by Christine Pahlman.

Thank you for the opportunity to make a few remarks on the topic of the cooperation and assistance machinery of the Convention.
Australia welcomed the establishment of the Standing Committee on Resources, Cooperation and Assistance as a forum to help ensure that the important issues of resources, cooperation and assistance are addressed consistently, comprehensively and coherently within the Convention.
Australia considers that effective mine action assistance is dependent on effective partnerships and cooperation between affected States, local communities and their governments, implementing operators and donors and we welcome all opportunites for dialogue to strengthen cooperation and assistance.

Discussions and cooperation between these actors take place in many forums and at many levels. Partnerships and cooperation that takes place at the national level will generally be of particular relevance in addressing the needs of an affected country.

That said Australia notes that the Standing Committee is a useful avenue for promoting partnerships and cooperation and steering discussions and thinking on how best to deliver cooperation and assistance in support of the aims of the Convention at the global level.

In our view, the Standing Committee and its work including through the Platform for Partnerships has helped all State Parties to be better informed of the availability of resources, cooperation and assistance. It has also helped to ensure that information on how to access and utilize existing resources is available and is regularly updated in an accessible and timely and transparent manner to all States Parties.

Most importantly, the Standing Committee has provided a platform to share experiences and successful practices related to mobilization and use of resources across regions and across the world. As noted by member of the panel technical cooperation and assistance between affected State Parties is particularly valuable and we welcome opportunities provided by the Committee to strengthen these discussions.

Australia considers there is also an ongoing role for the Committee in providing a forum to discuss issues that are fundamental to delivering effective resources, cooperation and assistance to state Parties.

We note however that contributions to the Platform for Partnerships remains very limited and that this resource will only be useful if it is regularly updated.

We particularly note that very similar level and type of discussions are also held under the Convention on Cluster Munitions and to some extent the Convention on Certain Conventional Weapons. We therefore continue to encourage ongoing consideration of how synergies between these discussions may be realised and welcome any rationalisation of the time and effort allocated to these discussions across the disarmament conventions.

As a donor, Australia continues to appreciate the opportunity provided by the Standing Committee to explore and discuss how our individual assistance efforts can be coordinated and applied to effectively and efficiently assist more and more States to meet their obligations including to achieve the important goal of becoming mine free.

I thank you Mr President.