Assemblies of the Member States of WIPO: Sixty-First Series of Meetings
September 21 to 25, 2020
The Sixty-First Series of Meetings of the Assemblies of the Member States of WIPO will take place at the WIPO headquarters in Geneva, Switzerland.
Organizational arrangements this year are mainly guided by COVID-19 restrictions. The health and safety of delegates is a priority for the Secretariat and special arrangements are being made to ensure that necessary medical protocols are respected.
In order to enable compliance with current health and safety measures, the Assemblies will be held in a hybrid format, with physical attendance for up to two delegates (preferably Geneva-based) per Member delegation at any time on the WIPO campus, while other Member and Observer delegates may follow the live transmission of the Assemblies proceedings online, either via the new online remote participation platform (required if taking the floor remotely) or via WIPO’s webcasting (available in all UN languages without registration formalities).
Delegates nominated to participate physically on site and/or remotely via the online platform are requested to register online by September 4, 2020, and upload their credentials (Note Verbale, official letter or document from a competent authority in a WIPO Member State or Observer Organization).
Delegates may wish to carefully consider the current public health situation and abstain from travelling to Geneva this year, and participate in the Assemblies online instead, with in-person representation from Geneva-based delegates only.
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Participation in the Assemblies
Member delegates will be able to attend the Assemblies physically or online. Representatives of accredited observer organizations may participate online only.
Physical participation of Member delegates will be limited to two delegates per Member delegation at any time on the WIPO campus, in order to enable compliance with current health and safety measures.
In view of the stringent restrictions on travel to Switzerland, it is preferable that the delegates be Geneva‑based.
It is further recommended that the two delegates be the same throughout the Assemblies. Nevertheless, it will be possible to change the composition of the delegation during the lunchtime break and from one day to the next, as long as no more than two delegates per delegation are on the WIPO campus at any given time.
Due to COVID-19 two meter distance constraints, the seating capacity of the WIPO Conference Hall has been reduced to about 25 per cent of normal capacity. One seat per delegation will be allocated in the WIPO Conference Hall. The second seat per delegation will be allocated outside the WIPO Conference Hall in other meetings rooms on the WIPO campus, which will be linked to the WIPO Conference Hall.
Following recommendations of the UN medical directors network, all delegates and WIPO staff present on the WIPO campus will have to wear masks at all times, except when seated at the cafeterias. Masks will be made available to delegates if needed.
Delegates not attending in-person may follow the live transmission of the Assemblies proceedings online, either through the live webcasting or through the new online remote participation platform (“online platform”) .
Delegates who may need to take the floor remotely will connect via the online platform. Registered remote delegates will be individually contacted concerning technical modalities.
For any delegate who does not plan to take the floor, webcasting is the simplest way to follow the proceedings, since it is easy to access and does not require any pre-meeting authentication, training or connectivity testing processes. Webcasting is available in all UN languages.
Statements by Delegations
As usual, declaratory statements for all agenda items (in particular, General Statements under Item 5) may be delivered in a written format as an alternative to a delegate taking the floor to deliver the statement orally.
Oral statements may be delivered by a physical on-site delegate present at WIPO, as per usual practice. Exceptionally, oral statements may also be delivered remotely this year, either live via the online platform or in advance with a pre-recorded statement.
Pre-recorded statements are useful to remotely deliver oral statements on any agenda item while avoiding the additional technical steps required to participate remotely via the online platform, and minimizing the risk that an unstable connection or unexpected technical issue may interrupt or prevent the delivery of an oral statement. All pre‑recorded statements will be broadcast live during the plenary sessions of the Assemblies, and will therefore become an integral part of the report of the meetings.
In order to ensure the highest quality of interpretation, interpreters should receive a copy of prepared statements (even in draft form) ahead of their oral delivery. This is particularly important for longer statements, such as General Statements under Agenda Item 5, as well as any other interventions that are read. This is even more important if the oral intervention is to be made remotely via the online platform.
Prepared statements should be sent as early as possible (at the latest on the morning of their delivery) to Ms. Christina Fertis, Chief Interpreter (email@example.com) or handed to the WIPO conference staff. The statements will be made available to interpreters prior to delivery, in order to assist them in faithfully transmitting the messages of delegates.