Core Group of States

The Commission was an independent body. It carried out its tasks in full political, analytical and managerial independence. Commissioners and Co-chairs acted in their personal capacity only.

  1. Following a proposal by the United Nations Secretary-General in July 2003, a Core Group of interested States convened for the purpose of preparing the establishment of the Commission.  Switzerland and Sweden, together with Brazil, Morocco and the Philippines, developed an initial draft of the Commission mandate, which was reviewed further by an expanded open-ended Core Group that included 34 governments*. With the creation of the Commission on 1 January 2004, the Core Group acted as an informal consultative body for the Commission.
  2. By participating in the Core Group, governments:
    • supported the creation of the Commission as initially suggested by the Secretary-General;
    • endorsed the purpose of the Commission;
    • followed and support the work of the Commission; and
    • were available for on-going consultations with the Commission.
  3. The working relationship between the Commission and the Core Group was as follows:
    • The Core Group served as a reference point for government consultations by the Commission in order to receive input for its activities.
    • The Commission kept the Core Group informed of overall work in progress, through interim reports and by organising meetings at regular intervals with all Core Group members.  Such meetings normally took place with Permanent Missions in Geneva.  Meetings were also be held in New York.
    • The Commission could consult with individual Core Group members, including the two Co-chairs of the Core Group, Switzerland and Sweden.
    • Interested Core Group governments could offer diplomatic, logistical and financial support to the Commission in the preparation and organisation of Regional Commission Meetings that will involve other governments, international institutions and the non-governmental sector (academia, corporate sector, NGOs, media, etc.)
    • Irrespective of the region where Regional Commission Meetings are held, Core Group members were invited through their respective local representatives and/or otherwise.
    • No financial commitments arose from participation in the Group.  Interested Core Group governments could, however, consider making available financial support to the Budget of the Commission, to ensure the functioning of the Secretariat and the work of the Commission.
*The Core Group Comprised:
  • Algeria
  • Australia
  • Bangladesh
  • Belgium
  • Brazil
  • Canada
  • Egypt
  • Finland
  • France
  • Germany
  • Holy See
  • Hungary
  • India
  • Indonesia
  • Iran
  • Japan
  • Mexico
  • Morocco
  • Netherlands
  • Nigeria
  • Norway
  • Pakistan
  • Peru
  • Philippines
  • Russia
  • South Africa
  • Spain
  • Sri Lanka
  • Sweden
  • Switzerland
  • Turkey
  • United Kingdom
  • EC/EU

The Core Group was chaired by Switzerland and Sweden. The Group was open-ended. Other governments expressed interest in joining the Group which also acted as a reference point for consultations by the Commission.