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New Voluntary Assistance Fund seeks Applications

Applications are today invited for IWC member governments of limited means to obtain financial support for attendance at IWC events.  A Voluntary Assistance Fund was created at the 2016 Commission Meeting, and aims to strengthen the capacity of developing countries to participate in the work of the IWC.

The new fund was created via a Resolution, adopted at the Commission meeting in October 2016.  The Resolution recognises the large number of developing countries which are members of the IWC, and seeks the fullest possible participation of all member governments in IWC meetings, workshops and research programmes. 

A significant development for the IWC, the increased participation facilitated by the fund will strengthen the IWC's scientific and technical capability through capacity building, research, conservation and welfare activities. 

Each IWC member government pays a core contribution towards the running of the Commission and its scientific research programme.  Contributions vary depending on several factors, one of which is the capacity to pay of each country.  Members governments are divided into three groups, Group 1 being those members with the lowest capacity to pay and Group 4 incorporating those with the highest.  The Voluntary Assistance Fund is focused on IWC members in Groups 1 and 2. 

An initial sum of £23,000 has been allocated and IWC members who are able to do so, are encouraged to supplement the fund with voluntary contributions.  It's calculated that approximately £74,000 would be required to support attendance of one delegate from each of the Group 1 and 2 countries at a 10 day meeting such as the annual IWC Scientific Committee.  Money will be allocated by the Secretariat according to eligibility criteria.   In the event of a shortfall, an agreed prioritisation procedure will be followed.

To read the Resolution (including the eligibility criteria and prioritisation procedure) click here.

For more information on IWC Funding arrangements click here.

For the voluntary assistance application form click here.

Please e-mail secretariat@iwc.int if you would like to make a contribution to the Voluntary Assistance Fund.