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Message from the Secretariat on COVID-19

The global corona virus pandemic is a concern for us all and is a reality to all of us, no matter where we live and work. We all find ourselves facing very trying times.

To overcome the spread and threat of the COVID-19 virus, we have had to adapt our daily work and family lives to ensure that we comply to the guidelines and adhere to social distancing. We would like to reassure you that the Secretariat is committed to delivering on our work to protect the ozone layer and all life under the sun.

We will implement different and various methods in our long standing practice of meeting the needs of the parties and stakeholders. Meetings that involve discussions and negotiations will happen only after a careful assessment of the COVID-19 situation, and in coordination with the United Nations, the host governments and by taking into consideration all different measures put in place by governments around the world. A decision on whether to proceed with the Open-ended Working Group, and the related meetings, will be taken at the end of May after a thorough evaluation of the situation at that point in time. Planning and working towards the meeting will proceed as normal, and all related meeting documents will be posted in advance of the meeting.

The meetings of the Assessment Panels will take place virtually, which is a tremendous achievement and a testament to the flexibility and commitment of the members of the Assessment Panels. We extend our great appreciation and admiration to the Panels and salute their determination to maintain a ‘business as usual’ approach under these difficult circumstances.

As we all commit to adapting to this new working modality, the Secretariat team will do its utmost to continue functioning as normal, while serving the parties virtually.

We sincerely hope that you and your loved ones stay well and safe, and we hope to see you all again soon.

The Ozone Secretariat