Ministers' Deputies / Rapporteur Groups
GR-C
Rapporteur Group on Education, Culture, Sport,
Youth and Environment

GR-C(2005)CB11 6 January 20061
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Synopsis
GR-C meeting of 15 December 2005


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Introduction

The Rapporteur Group on Education, Culture, Sport, Youth and Environment (GR-C) met on 15 December 2005 under the chairmanship of Ambassador Christian Ter Stepanian, Permanent Representative of Armenia. The meeting was based on the notes (document GR-C(2005)52), in respect of the Agenda as it appears in GR-C(2005)OJ11. The Chair asked the Group to note that at its next meeting, there would be an exchange of views with the Director of Culture of UNESCO.

1. Communication by the Director General of DG IV

The Director General of DG IV presented information about DG IV's recent major activities and events. She mentioned, in particular, the 4th Forum on Strategies for Educational Reform in Europe (Prague, 21-23 November 2005), the aim of which was to review and co-ordinate the activities for initial and continuous teacher training in the values of democratic citizenship conducted in member states. She also reported on the UNESCO meeting of the Ministers of Culture of South East Europe in Venice at the invitation of the Minister of Culture of Italy, with the aim of taking stock of the work on the protection of cultural heritage in South-East Europe, and more specifically of the contribution made jointly by the European Commission and the Council of Europe through the Joint Programme for the ‘Regional Programme for Cultural and Natural Heritage for South-East Countries’. She briefly mentioned the preparation of the next Forum on Social Cohesion (Autumn 2006), organised every year by DG III, but this time jointly with DG IV, with the aim of reflecting on the impact of social policies on educational and cultural policies and vice versa. She would provide further information on this initiative in her next communication.

2. Agreement on Sport – Draft terms of reference for the CDDS Bureau on the feasibility study
(GR-C(2005)50)

In the context of the preparation of the draft 2006 budget, the Secretary General has proposed to transfer the sports co-operation activities previously carried out by the Committee for the Development of Sport (CDDS) to a new agreement.2 The GR-C, when discussing the draft programme of activities of DG IV for 2006 at its meeting on 3 November 2005, shared the opinion of the CDDS that a period of reflection was necessary before taking a decision on the future of the sport in the Council of Europe. The Secretariat prepared, at the request of the GR-C, a document on transitional measures for 20063 listing the following costs: the CDDS Bureau meetings, the Moscow informal Ministerial meeting in October 2006, the Sprint Programme, a feasibility study on a possible Agreement for Sport and staff for this transitional period for the Sports sector.

The Deputies adopted the Council of Europe’s budget for 2006, including transitional measures for the sports sector, at their 949th meeting (1 December 2005, item 7.1).4 In order to carry out the transitional measures, the Secretariat, instead of seeking to renew the expired CDDS’ terms of reference, has prepared ad hoc terms of reference for the present CDDS Bureau5 (Appendix 1 to GR-C(2005)50) to enable it – as a representative forum – to work on the above-mentioned matters in 2006. The GR-C was invited to consider them, with a view to their transmission to the Deputies for adoption.

Several delegations proposed amendments to the draft terms of reference; they appear in bold in the text which is appended to this Synopsis. The draft terms of reference as amended were agreed by consensus and would be placed “in the box” on 11 January 2006 at the 952nd meeting of the Deputies for adoption without debate.

3. Follow-up to the Faro Conference:

a. 5th (enlarged) Ministerial Colloquy of the STAGE6 Project (Kyiv, 15-16 September 2005)

The Chair recalled that, at their 950th meeting on 7 December 2005, the Deputies:

“4. requested their Rapporteur Group on Education, Culture, Sport, Youth and Environment (GR-C) to evaluate the STAGE project with a view to preparing the decisions to be taken concerning the elaboration, in close co-operation with interested states, of a new regional and transversal project of cultural co-operation for Armenia, Azerbaijan, Georgia, Ukraine and Moldova, as a follow-up to the STAGE Project which comes to a successful end in December 2005; in this context, the convocation, as soon as possible, of a working party composed of representatives from member states to the CD-CULT who have expressed their support for the Kyiv initiative will also be considered;”.

He drew the delegations’ attention to the fact that the evaluation report in English had already been circulated, while waiting for the French version to be distributed shortly. The Chair made proposals concerning the timetable for discussion: the delegations would be invited to proceed with the evaluation of the STAGE project at the next GR-C meeting on 19 January 2006 in the presence of the expert, Mr Sandell, who had prepared the evaluation report; the working party would then meet by the end of January 2006 and the GR-C would consider the results of that meeting at its meeting on 7 March 2006. The Director General of DG IV suggested inviting an expert consultant in cultural heritage to participate in the meeting of the working party. The Group agreed with this proposal and urged the Secretariat to issue the invitations as soon as possible.

b. Draft Recommendation Rec(2005)… of the Committee of Ministers to member states on the UNESCO Convention on the Protection of the Diversity of Cultural Contents and Artistic Expressions
(GR-C(2005)51)

A draft Recommendation of the Committee of Ministers calling on member states to ratify the UNESCO Convention on the protection and promotion of the diversity of cultural expressions as soon as possible was prepared and adopted by the Steering Committee on the Media and New Communication Services (CDMC) at its meeting on 29 November-2 December 2005. In that context, it should be recalled that the Deputies adopted, at their 945th meeting, on 9 November 2005, under item 7.1,7 the following decision:

“[The Deputies] encouraged the member states of the Council of Europe to take the necessary measures to bring into force as quickly as possible the Convention on the protection and promotion of the diversity of cultural expressions adopted by UNESCO on 20 October 2005, and instructed the GR-C to keep this question on its agenda.”

Since then, the draft Recommendation has been communicated to the Chair and Vice-Chair of the CDCULT, who have proposed a number of additions (see GR-C(2005)52OJ). The CDMC Secretariat has in turn suggested a number of amendments to the CDCULT amendments. Following discussion and a proposal by the Director General of DGIV, it was agreed that this item should be reconsidered at the next meeting of the GR-C in the light of the exchange of views with the Director of Culture of UNESCO.

4. CAHCIT:8 Report on the 4th meeting (20-21 September 2005)
(GR-C(2005)48)

The Chair welcomed Mr Krzysztof OSTROWSKI, Chair of the CAHCIT, who presented the report of the above meeting as well as further developments concerning the European Year of Citizenship through Education. Mr Ostrowski stressed that a wide involvement and input at grass-roots level into the “Year” had taken place and gave examples. The Group congratulated the CAHCIT for the excellent results of the “Year”, while underlining the importance of continuing activities on education for democratic citizenship.

The Deputies would be invited to take note of the report at their 952nd meeting (11 January 2006).

5. Draft recommendations of the Committee of Ministers to member states

5.1 Draft Recommendation Rec(2005)… of the Committee of Ministers to member states on the promotion of participation of minority youth
(GR-C(2005)21)

Following the Chair’s request to present in writing any possible comments on this item by 10 December 2005, it was noted that one delegation had presented such comments at the start of the meeting (DD(2005)723). A number of delegations disagreed with these proposed amendments. Following discussion, the Group agreed that the draft Recommendation and its draft Explanatory Memorandum, accompanied by the amendments proposed by the delegations (appearing in Addendum to document GR-C(2005)21), should be forwarded for consideration to a number of Council of Europe’s expert committees, among them the DH-MIN and the CDMG.9 The Secretariat was asked to examine whether any other relevant committees should also be consulted and to prepare a draft decision to this effect for the attention of the Deputies for their 952nd meeting on 11 January 2006. In the light of the views expressed by the different committees consulted, the Group would revert to this matter at its meeting on 4 May 2006.

5.2 Draft Recommendation Rec(2005)… of the Committee of Ministers to member states on the role of national youth councils in youth policy development
(GR-C(2005)2)

Following the Chair’s request to present in writing any possible comments on this item by 10 December 2005, it was noted that one delegation had presented such comments at the start of the meeting (DD(2005)723). After slightly amending it, the Group asked the Secretariat to insert in an appropriate place in the draft Explanatory Memorandum to the draft Recommendation the same paragraph defining “minorities” as was found in the draft Explanatory Memorandum in document GR-C(2005)21 (see the item above).

The Group agreed on the draft Recommendation as amended by consensus and decided to place it “in the box” on 11 January 2006 at the 952nd meeting of the Deputies for adoption without debate, and for publication of its Explanatory Memorandum as amended.

6. Parliamentary Assembly Recommendation 1688 (2004) on diaspora cultures – Draft reply
(REC_1688 (2004) and GR-C(2005)15)

The GR-C had held a preliminary examination of the draft reply at its meeting on 12 September 2005 but at the request of a delegation, the item had been postponed to a forthcoming meeting of the Group. At the present meeting, the Group agreed on the draft reply, with a small addition to paragraph 2 proposed by one delegation, and decided to place it “in the box” on 11 January 2006 at the 952nd meeting of the Deputies for adoption without debate.

7. Draft replies to Congress Recommendations

7.1 Recommendation 174 (2005) on youth education for sustainable development: the role of the regions
(REC_174 (2005) and GR-C(2005)26)

Following the Chair’s request to present in writing any possible comments on this item by 10 December 2005, the Swedish delegation had suggested an addition at the end of paragraph two. In the course of the discussion, this proposed amendment was slightly modified and integrated into the 5th paragraph of the draft reply, which the Group agreed on by consensus and decided to place it “in the box” on 11 January 2006 at the 952nd meeting of the Deputies for adoption without debate.

The Director General of DG IV clarified the composition and work of the “Think Tank” mentioned in paragraph 5 of the draft reply, to the satisfaction of the Group. She added that at one of its forthcoming meetings, the GR-C would be fully informed on the work conducted by DG IV in the field of environmental protection and sustainable development.

7.2 Recommendation 175 (2005) on outermost regions: a challenge to the balanced and sustainable development of European territory
(REC_175 (2005) and GR-C(2005)33)

The Group agreed on the draft reply, as contained in document GR-C(2005)33, by consensus and decided to place it “in the box” on 11 January 2006 at the 952nd meeting of the Deputies for adoption without debate.

8. Any other business

One delegation enquired about the developments concerning the “White Paper” on cultural diversity. The Director General of DG IV explained that the Secretary General would hold a cross-secretarial meeting on the co-ordination of work on intercultural dialogue early in January 2006. Following this meeting, draft terms of reference would be prepared for a working party on this matter and would be submitted to the GR-C at its meeting of 7 March 2006.

9. Date of the next meeting

Thursday, 19 January 2006 at 10 a.m.

Appendix

Draft specific terms of reference10

1. Name of Committee:

Ad Hoc Committee for the Agreement on Sport (CAHAS)

2. Type of Committee:

Ad hoc Committee of Experts

3. Source of terms of reference:

Committee of Ministers

4. Terms of reference:

At their 949th meeting (1 December 05, item 7.1) the Ministers’ Deputies adopted the budget and programme of activities for 2006 which includes transitional measures in the sport sector (CM(2005)133 vol. II Corrigendum, project 2006/DG4/1033), to be possibly transferred to an Agreement to be set up.

    In this context, the Committee:

i. will make proposals on the future of the “Ballons Rouges” project.

ii. will study for the Committee of Ministers and the Secretary General the future of sport in the Council of Europe, in particular by preparing a feasibility study on the AS, including
inter alia consultations with the member states and sports federations.

iii. will advise the Committee of Ministers on the preparation of the 17th Informal Meeting of Sports Ministers (Moscow, October 2006).

iv. will, within allocated budgetary resources, prioritise the activities that may be carried out under the former CDDS Sprint assistance programme in 2006.

v. will supervise any other transitional arrangements necessary for sports co-operation within the Council of Europe in view of its possible re-organisation, while awaiting the final decision on the future of sport in the Council of Europe.

5. Membership of the Committee:

A. Members

    The Committee will consist of the Chair and Vice-Chair of the CDDS, the Chair of the Anti-Doping Convention (T-DO) and the Chair of the European Convention on Spectator Violence (T-RV) and the other members of the CDDS Bureau elected in March 2005, and the representative of the host country of the 17th Informal Meeting of Sports Ministers.

    Their travel and subsistence expenses for two/three meetings will be borne by the Council of Europe.

B. Participants

    The Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe may attend meetings of the Committee, with the right to vote11 but at the charge of its administrative budget.

C. Other participants

    A representative of the European Commission shall be invited to attend meetings of the Committee, without the right to vote or defrayal of expenses.

6. Working methods:

    The Committee will work in accordance with the general working methods and rules of procedure of Council of Europe committees. The Committee can be assisted by an expert consultant when working on the feasibility study.

7. Reporting:

    The Committee will report to the Committee of Ministers via the Rapporteur Group on Education, Culture, Sport, Youth and Environment (GR-C) and to the Secretary General.

8. Duration:

    These terms of reference will expire on 31 December 2006.

Note 1 This document has been classified restricted at the date of issue. Unless the Committee of Ministers decides otherwise, it will be declassified according to the rules set up in Resolution Res(2001)6 on access to Council of Europe documents.

2 At the request of the GR-C, a preliminary draft resolution, set out in document GR-C(2005)49, was circulated to Delegations for information.

Note 3 Document GR-C(2005)47.
Note 4 See Corrigendum to CM(2005)133 Volume II.
Note 5 It could also be called Ad hoc Committee for the Agreement on Sport.
Note 6 Support for Transition in the Arts and Culture in Greater Europe.
Note 7 on the Closing Conference of the 50th anniversary of the European Cultural Convention (Faro, 27-28 October 2005).
Note 8 Ad Hoc Committee of Experts for the European Year of Citizenship through Education.
Note 9 At the request of the German Delegation.
Note 10 It should be noted that these terms of reference do not comply in its form to the recently adopted Resolution Res(2005)47 concerning committees and their subordinate bodies, their terms of reference and their working methods (951st meeting, 14 December 2005,
Note item 1.6) because this specific situation demands transitional measures.
Note 11 In dispensation of Article 3.2.2 of Resolution Res(2005)47 concerning committees and their subordinate bodies, their terms of reference and their working methods.


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