The 2016 biennial Commission meeting of the IWC will be held at the Grand Hotel Bernardin, Portoroz, Slovenia.
A range of issues relating to Finance and Administration began proceedings on the final day of the IWC Plenary. A series of measures to build upon previous governance improvements were agreed including provision for handling the increasing number of voluntary contributions to support work programmes such as the Aboriginal Subsistence Whaling, Conservation, Welfare and Small Cetaceans Research Funds
Reports of the eight committees and working groups which met last week were all adopted without further discussion, reflecting the efforts and commitment of all those who took part. The proposals and recommendations in these reports form a large part of the two year work programme which now begins.
Over the past three days, discussions have continued on a Resolution on the Creation of a Fund to Strengthen the Capacity of Governments of Limited Means to Participate in the Work of the IWC. A revised Resolution was put forward today which contained a series of measures designed to enable governments of limited means to play a full role in IWC intersessional work, including meetings and workshops. Governments expressed their commitment to the principles underlying this Resolution although some continuing concerns over wording and the lack of time for further dialogue led to a vote. A number of governments chose to abstain and the Resolution was adopted with 30 yes votes recorded, 31 abstentions and 1 non-participation.
The Commission then reviewed and agreed the main outcomes of the meeting.
The Chair, Bruno Mainini of Switzerland, was thanked for his capable and skilful chairing of the meeting and the Governments of Australia and New Zealand welcomed the election of Joji Morishita of Japan as incoming chair. Acknowledging that their countries do not always agree, they recognised Mr Morishita's long association and deep understanding of the Commission, and the honest and open dialogue that their Governments' maintain, despite their differences. The host Government of Slovenia was thanked for once again providing such a picturesque backdrop and excellent hospitality, and the Commission welcomed Brazil's invitation to host the 2018 Commission meeting.