The 12th session of the Assembly of the States Parties to the Rome Statute (ASP) achieved its goals and was successfully concluded on 28 November 2013 in The Hague. The adopted resolutions represent common ground between the States Parties on various issues. The States Parties agree on the budget proposal contained in Resolution ICC-ASP/12/Res.1, which was adopted by consensus at the 12th plenary meeting, on 27 November 2013. The programme budget was adjusted by 4.52 million Euros based on the Committee on Budget and Finance (CBF) suggestion, which reduced the total to 121,656,200 Euros, the majority to be allocated to the Registry, Office of the Prosecutor, and Judiciary. The Resolution on the budget was adopted at the CBF budget meeting without objections, however with a comment from the Canadian delegation.
The Canadian Delegate, Ambassador David Sproule, commented that even though Canada agrees with the new budget, it still views the proposed budget as too high. Canada initially suggested zero nominal growth for 2014, but was able to accept the budget after negotiations. Canada still argues for the Court to demonstrate budgetary restraint, sound management, and additional savings in future years. The Canadian Delegate further indicated that even though Canada accepts the budget for 2014, it will closely monitor the Court to ensure that zero nominal growth for future budgets is achieved.
Additionally, the Resolution includes that the host State will contribute to the Court for an Interim Premises in the amount for 2.9 million Euros. The payment for the Interim Premises will bring the budget down to 118,595,000 Euros. The Permanent Premises, as per ICC-ASP/12/Res.2, should be constructed within its budget of 190 million Euros, which will be closely monitored by the Independent Oversight Mechanism (IOM) to host the ASP in 2016.
Another ICC financial matter that was discussed is the Contingency Fund established by resolution ICC-ASP/3/Res.4, in the amount of 10 million Euros. The Court needs to consider options for how to replenish the funds that were requested by the Office of the Prosecutor (OTP). However, the Fund currently meets the 7 million Euros threshold and therefore it does not need to be replenished for 2014.
The State Parties also agreed that the Court would implement the International Public Sector Accounting Standards (IPSAS) as of 1 January 2014. The approved budget for this multi-year project is 1.9 million Euros and the ASP approved the remaining amount of 290,000 Euros from 2013 to be available; otherwise it would be distributed among State Parties as per Rule 4.7 of the Financial Regulations and Rules.
Lastly, the State Parties decided, based on ICC-ASP/12/Res.6, that the IOM shall perform the functions of investigations, inspections, and evaluations in accordance with article 112, paragraph 4 of the Rome Statute. The IOM shall conduct its operational independence under the authority of the President of the Assembly. It also decided that the mandate of the IOM would be composed of four staff members. As I mentioned in the previous blog entry, Canada requested all of the IOM functions to be operational and to oversee the conduct of the all three organs of the Court. The Court declared the IOM as functional in the above mentioned Resolution, which was agreed by the State Parties at the 12th session of the ASP.
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