Strasbourg, 6 November 1996 Restricted
For consideration at the 578th meeting
of the Ministers' Deputies
(18-21 November 1996, A level, item 11.7)
MODALITIES GOVERNING A STATE'S ACCESSION TO
AND WITHDRAWAL FROM PARTIAL AGREEMENTS
Document prepared by the Directorate of Legal Affairs
This document reproduces Part I of document GT-AP(96)7 revised, as approved by the Ad hoc Working Party on Partial Agreements at its meeting of 25 October 1996. It is submitted to the Deputies, following a request by the Working Party, in order that they may take note of the practical modalities contained therein.
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PRACTICAL MODALITIES GOVERNING ACCESSION TO AND WITHDRAWAL FROM PARTIAL AGREEMENTS
Subject to the relevant provisions of some of the statutes governing Partial Agreements1, the following principles shall apply in respect of accession to and withdrawal from a Partial Agreement:
Member States of the Council of Europe
-Member States of the Council of Europe may become members of a Partial Agreement by taking part in the adoption of the Committee of Ministers resolution establishing the Partial Agreement. In this case they shall become members on the very date of the resolution. The latter shall specify the consequences, especially in the financial sphere, of their membership of the Agreement.
-States may also accede at any time thereafter by means of a declaration addressed to the Secretary General, which shall take effect on the date of its receipt by the Secretary General unless another date is specified in the declaration. The declaration shall be made by the Minister for Foreign Affairs or the Permanent Representative of the State concerned and include a confirmation of the financial obligations undertaken by the State concerned, be they dispensatory or not.
States that are not members of the Council of Europe
-In the course of any prior contacts, the Secretariat shall inform the authorities of the requesting State that an application for accession must be made by the Minister for Foreign Affairs or a diplomatic representative especially empowered to do so. The requesting State shall also be informed beforehand that the application will be binding on the State concerned as soon as it is accepted by the Committee of Ministers, notably as regards budgetary implications. Its attention will, in particular, be drawn to the relevant provisions of the Financial Regulations applicable.
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-The Secretary General shall acknowledge receipt of the application and inform the State that it will be submitted to the Committee of Ministers, specifying that accession will take effect on the date of the Committee of Ministers decision unless another date is specified in the application.
-Once the decision is taken, the Secretary General shall immediately inform the State concerned, confirming that accession took effect on the date of the decision, unless another date was specified in the application.
-This State should communicate its acceptance of the Committee of Ministers' decision as soon as possible.
-The same provisions shall apply mutatis mutandis in the event of an application for status as an associate member or observer.
-Where the Statute of the Partial Agreement confers the right of accession on non-member States (for example States Parties to the European Cultural Convention), those States shall accede by means of a declaration addressed to the Secretary General, in accordance with the same modalities as member States.
-Whether a State is a member of the Council of Europe or not, withdrawal shall be effected by means of a declaration addressed to the Secretary General by the Minister for Foreign Affairs or by the Permanent Representative or a diplomatic representative who shall be given specific powers to this effect.
-The Secretary General shall acknowledge receipt of the declaration and inform the State concerned that it will be submitted to the Committee of Ministers.
-By analogy with Article 7 of the Statute of the Council of Europe, the withdrawal shall take effect:
.at the end of the financial year in which it is notified, if the notification is given during the first nine months of that financial year;
.at the end of the next financial year, if the notification is given in the last three months of the financial year.
-In accordance with Article 18 of the Financial Regulations of the Council of Europe, the Committee of Ministers shall examine the financial consequences of the withdrawal and make the appropriate arrangements.
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-The Secretary General shall immediately inform the State concerned of the consequences for it of its withdrawal and shall keep the Committee of Ministers informed of the outcome.
C. INFORMATION OF MEMBER STATES
The Secretariat will periodically notify all Delegations of the state of new accessions and withdrawals as regards the Partial Agreements.
1 At this moment, the Partial Agreements concerned are the following: Social Development Fund, European Pharmacopoeia, European Audiovisual Observatory. Reference is also made to the provisions of Article 2 of Resolution (96) 35 revising the Partial Agreement in the Social and Public Health Field.