In accordance with Article 31 of the ITU Convention “Credentials for Conferences”, the delegation sent by a Member State to a plenipotentiary conference “shall be duly accredited” (CV 324). While additional information regarding such accreditation process has already been provided in Circular Letters CL-22/5 and CL-22/24, the information provided in this webpage aims to address certain frequently asked questions. Kindly note that the answers provided below are without prejudice to any decision of the PP-22 Credentials Committee, which remains solely competent to consider and report to the PP-22 Plenary on the admissibility of credentials submitted to the Conference.
1. How is a delegation “duly accredited”?
This is done by submitting an instrument of credentials, which needs to be signed by the Head of State, the Head of Government or the Minister for Foreign Affairs (CV 325). The credentials submitted shall, moreover, fulfil one of the following criteria (CV 326):
For your convenience, a model instrument of credentials for use by delegations which fulfils the criteria set out in the relevant provisions of the ITU Convention is available here.
2. In what form should the credentials instrument be submitted?
The credentials instrument needs to be submitted in its original form. Member States are nonetheless welcome to send an advance electronic copy of their credentials at firstname.lastname@example.org, if they wish to receive feedback from the secretariat prior to the submission of their original instrument.
A Note Verbale is not acceptable as a credentials instrument because it does not meet the requirements of CV 325. Following established practice, credentials sent by fax or by e-mail are also considered as not being in order.
Please also note that credentials instruments should be accompanied by a certified translation in one of the official languages of ITU, if they are not already drafted in one of them (Arabic, Chinese, English, French, Russian, Spanish).
3. Where and when can the original credentials instrument be submitted?
Please submit the original credentials instrument “as early as possible” (CV 334) using one of the two following methods:
4. Does the submissions of a credentials instrument mean that a delegation is automatically registered to participate in PP-22?
Accreditation and registration are separate and independent processes. While accreditation is performed by submitting an instrument of credentials, registration to PP-22 is done through the online registration system. Correspondingly, they both need to be completed to enable a delegation to fully participate in PP-22. Additional information on registration may be found on PP-22 website, at https://plenipotentiary.itu.int/participation/registration/.
5. What happens if the Credentials Committee finds that the credentials of a delegation are not in order?
After having examined all submitted credentials, the Credentials Committee is mandated to submit a report containing its findings to the Plenary Meeting of the Conference for endorsement (GR 68).
A delegation whose credentials are found not to be in order by the Plenary Meeting shall not be entitled to exercise the right to vote or to sign the Final Acts until the situation has been rectified (CV 333).
6. What if a Member State is unable to send a delegation to attend PP-22 in Bucharest? / What if a Member State is unable to send a delegation to attend PP-22 in Bucharest, but instead is able to participate remotely?
A Member State which is unable to send a delegation to Bucharest to attend PP-22 will not be able to exercise its right to vote nor to sign the Final Acts of the Conference. In line with PP Resolution 167, the same applies for Member States whose delegates have registered to participate in the Conference only as remote participants.
That being said, a Member State which is unable to send a delegation to Bucharest to attend PP-22 may submit a “Transfer of Powers” (“ToP”) instrument granting the delegation of another Member State present in Bucharest the right to vote and to sign the Final Acts on its behalf (CV 335).
A template ToP can be found here. Such template meets the statutory requirements established by Article 31 of the Convention, which are similar to those relating to the submission of credentials. More specifically, a ToP:
– must be signed by the Head of State, Head of Government or Minister of Foreign Affairs.
– must be submitted in its original form.
See also question 8.
7. What if a Member State delegation is attending PP-22 in person in Bucharest, however, it is unable to attend one or more meetings of the Conference?
A delegation which is not able to attend one or more meetings of the Conference may transfer to the delegation of another Member State its right to vote during those meetings (CV 336). For this to happen it is necessary that both the transferring and receiving delegations be duly accredited and physically present at the PP-22. An example of wording for such Transfer of Vote can be found here, however the actual scope of transfer – and hence, the wording itself- may differ depending on the number of meetings, meeting dates, etc for which the transfer of vote is effective.
A Transfer of Vote is signed by the head or deputy-head of the delegation who will not be able to attend one or more meetings. As there is no statutory requirement in terms of form, a Transfer of Vote may be transmitted to the Credentials Committee secretariat via email (sent specifically to: email@example.com) or delivered by hand; no original is required. A Transfer of Vote must include the name of the delegation receiving the transfer and the meeting (or meetings) where the Transfer of Vote will be in force.
Kindly note that Member States participating in PP-22 exclusively remotely (i.e., with no delegates physically present in Bucharest) are not considered ‘present’ at the Conference under the existing regulatory framework. Correspondingly, they cannot submit a Transfer of Vote. They may, however, chose to submit a Transfer of Powers (see question 6 above).
See also question 8.
8. Are there additional observations common to both Transfers of Powers (ToP) and Transfers of Vote (ToV)?
Transfers of Powers (CV 335) and Transfers of Vote (CV 336) are commonly and collectively referred to as ‘proxies’. In any case, neither of these proxies grant the receiving delegation a right to speak on behalf of another Member State.
While a delegation may receive more than one proxy (ToP, ToV, or both), it cannot exercise more than one proxy vote (CV 337) at any given time. In this regard, if a delegation receives more than one proxy, it will have to contact the Credentials Committee secretariat in advance in order to inform which delegated voting right it will be exercising in case of a vote, in addition to its own. Furthermore, while a delegation receiving a Transfer of Vote must be itself entitled to vote, this is not a requirement for delegations receiving a Transfer of Powers. Correspondingly, a receiving delegation which has lost its right to vote is still eligible to receive a Transfer of Powers.
As per the established practice, once a ToP or ToV is received, the Credentials Committee secretariat will promptly inform the Chairman of the Conference accordingly and, assuming that the corresponding requirements are met as indicated above, it will take the necessary administrative and technical measures so that the received ToP/ToV becomes effective in a transparent manner. These measures include publishing a Conference document to inform Conference participants of the ToP/ToV, as well as updating the credentials and voting databases to ensure that the absent Member State/delegation will be properly represented as per the ToP/ToV instructions. Due to the time required to implement these measures, Member States are informed that Transfers of Powers and Transfers of Vote received during the Conference will normally become effective at the next scheduled Plenary session.
9. Where can you request further advice?
Should you have any additional questions or require clarifications, please do not hesitate to contact the PP-22 Credentials Committee secretariat at firstname.lastname@example.org.