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Decision XXXIV/8: Strengthening Montreal Protocol institutions, including for combating illegal trade

Recalling decision XXXI/3, in which parties were encouraged to take action to discover and prevent the illegal production, import, export and consumption of controlled substances and to report fully proven cases of illegal trade in controlled substances to the Secretariat,

Recalling also decision XIV/7, in which the Secretariat was requested to collect information on illegal trade in ozone-depleting substances received from parties and disseminate it to all parties, and recognizing the need to apply similar provisions to all controlled substances,

Understanding the importance of preventing illegal trade for ensuring the timely and smooth phase-out of ozone-depleting substances and phase-down of hydrofluorocarbons (HFCs),

Recalling decision XIV/7, which states that illegally traded quantities should not be counted against a party’s consumption, provided the party does not place the said quantities on its own market,

Taking into account the note by the Secretariat on possible ways of dealing with illegal production of and illegal trade in controlled substances under the Montreal Protocol, identifying potential gaps in the non-compliance procedure, challenges, tools, ideas and suggestions for improvement,[1]

  1. To urge parties that have not already done so to introduce into their national customs classification systems the separate subdivisions for HFCs and blends contained in the amendments to the Harmonized Commodity Description and Coding System adopted by the World Customs Organization in 2019 that entered into force on 1 January 2022, and to use more specific classifications for controlled substances and blends containing controlled substances, where possible, to better identify and track imports and exports of controlled substances;
  2. To encourage parties to facilitate the exchange of information to prevent illegal trade of controlled substances by reporting to the Secretariat fully proved cases of illegal trade and, to the extent that parties are able to do so, to provide additional information about illegal trade situations;
  3. To encourage all parties to exchange information and strengthen joint efforts to improve means of identification, prevention and combating of illegal trade in controlled substances, including addressing the mislabelling of containers of controlled substances as other chemicals;
  4. To request the Secretariat to:
    1. Compile and regularly summarize the practices of illegal trade reported under paragraph 3 of the present decision, as well as the approaches taken by national authorities to identify and address such cases;
    2. Identify common features of licensing systems to assist parties wishing to improve their national licensing systems for controlled substances;
    3. Organize a one-day workshop on further strengthening effective implementation and enforcement of the Montreal Protocol, back to back with the forty-fifth meeting of the Open-ended Working Group of the Parties to the Montreal Protocol;
    4. Prepare a background information paper outlining issues to be discussed at the workshop and reflecting discussions at the forty-fourth meeting of the Open-ended Working Group and the Thirty-Fourth Meeting of the Parties for consideration at the forty-fifth meeting of the Open‑ended Working Group.


[1] UNEP/OzL.Pro.34/8.