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Details for the attendance of observers to the annual meetings of the IWC.



Observation at IWC meetings is open to the following:

  • Non-member governments
  • Intergovernmental organisations (IGOs)
  • Accredited Non-Governmental Organisations (NGOs).

The relevant criteria/requirements are as follows:

Non-member governments and IGOs:


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Any Government not a party to the Convention or any intergovernmental organisation may be represented at meetings of the Commission by an observer or observers, if such non-party government or intergovernmental organisation has previously attended any meeting of the Commission, or if it submits its request in writing to the Commission 60 days prior to the start of the meeting, or if the Commission issues an invitation to attend.
Non-Governmental Organisations:


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Any non-governmental organisation which expresses an interest in matters covered by the Convention, may be accredited as an observer. Requests for accreditation must be submitted in writing to the Commission 60 days prior to the start of the meeting and the Commission may issue an invitation with respect to such request.