Organization of American States Multilateral Treaties
CONVENTION ON THE INTER-AMERICAN INSTITUTE FOR COOPERATION ON AGRICULTURE
Opened for signature at the General Secretariat of the Organization of American States on March 6, 1979
The American States, members of the Inter-American Institute of Agricultural Sciences,
With the intention of strengthening and broadening the action of the InterAmerican Institute of Agricultural Sciences as an organization specialized in agriculture, an Institute established in compliance with the pertinent resolution adopted by the Eighth American Scientific Congress, held in Washington, D.C., in 1940, and in accordance with the terms of the Convention opened to signature by the American republics at the Pan American Union on January 15, 1944,
on the following:
CONVENTION ON THE INTER-AMERICAN INSTITUTE FOR COOPERATION ON AGRICULTURE
NATURE AND PURPOSES
The Inter-American Institute of Agricultural Sciences, established by the Convention opened to signature by the American republics on January 15, 1944, shall be called "The Inter-American Institute for Cooperation on Agriculture" (hereinafter the Institute), and shall be governed by the present Convention.
The Institute shall be of Inter-American scope, shall have international juridical personality, and shall be specialized in agriculture.
The purposes of the Institute are to encourage, promote, and support the efforts of the Member States to achieve their agricultural development and rural welfare.
To achieve its purposes, the institute shall have the following functions:
a. To promote the strengthening of national education, research, and rural development institutions, in order to give impetus to the advancement and the dissemination of science and technology applied to rural progress;
b. To formulate and execute plans, programs, projects, and activities, in accordance with the needs of the governments of the Member States, to contribute to the achievement of the objectives of their agricultural development and rural welfare policies and programs;
c. To establish and maintain relations of cooperation and coordination with the Organization of American States and with other agencies or programs, and with governmental and nongovernmental entities that pursue similar objectives;
d. To act as an organ for consultation, technical execution, and administration of programs and projects in the agricultural sector, through agreements with the Organization of American States, or with national, Inter-American, or international agencies and entities.
The Member States of the Institute shall be:
a. The Member States of the Organization of American States or of the Inter-
b. Other American states whose admission has been accepted by the affirmative vote of two thirds of the Member States on the Inter-American Board of Agriculture, and which accede to the present Convention.
The Institute shall have the following organs:
a. The Inter-American Board of Agriculture; b. The Executive Committee; and
c. The General Directorate.
THE INTER-AMERICAN BOARD OF AGRICULTURE
The Inter-American Board of Agriculture (hereinafter the Board) is the highest organ of the Institute, and shall be composed of all the Member States. The Government of each Member State shall appoint one representative, who shall preferably be connected with agricultural and rural development. Each Government may also appoint alternate representatives and advisers.
The Board shall have the following functions:
a. To adopt measures related to the policy and action of the Institute, taking into account the proposals of the Member States and the recommendations of the General Assembly and the Councils of the Organization of American States;
b. To approve the biennial program-budget and to determine the annual quotas of the Member States, by the affirmative vote of two thirds of its members;
c. To serve as a forum for the exchange of ideas, information, and experience related to the improvement of agriculture and rural life;
d. To decide on the admission of Member States, in accordance with Article 5, subparagraph (b);
e. To elect the Member States that will compose the Executive Committee, in accordance with the principles of partial rotation and equitable geographic distribution;
f. To elect the Director General and set his remuneration; to remove him by the vote of two thirds of the Member States, whenever the proper functioning of the Institute so demands;
g. To consider the reports of the Executive Committee and of the Director General;
h. To encourage cooperation between the Institute and other and other organizations, agencies, and entities that pursue analogous purposes; and
i. To adopt its rules of procedure and the agenda for its meetings, and also the rules of procedure of the Executive Committee and the regulations of the General Directorate.
The Board shall meet regularly every two years during the period determined by its rules of procedure and at a place selected in accordance with the principle of rotation. At each regular session the date and place of the next regular session shall be determined, in accordance with the rules of procedure. If no site is offered or the regular session cannot be held at the place chosen, the session shall be held at the headquarters of the Institute. However, if one of the Member States should make: a timely offer of a site in its territory, the Executive Committee, whether in session, or acting through consultation of its members by correspondence, may agree, by the vote of a majority of its members, that the session be held at that place.
In special circumstances, and at the request of one or more Member States, or of the Executive Committee, the Board may hold special sessions, for the convocation of which approval by the affirmative vote of two thirds of the Member States shall be required. In case the Board is not in session, the Director General shall consult the Member States by correspondence, concerning the request and shall convoke the Board if not less than two thirds of them are in agreement.
The presence of the representatives of a majority of the Member States shall constitute a. quorum. Each Member State is entitled to one vote.
Decisions of the Board shall be taken by the vote of a majority of the representatives present, except as provided in Article 19, in which case the vote of a majority of the Member States is required, and also as provided in Articles 5 (b); 8 (b) and (f); 10; and 35, in which cases the vote of two thirds of the Member States is required.
THE EXECUTIVE COMMITTEE
The Executive Committee (hereinafter the Committee) shall be composed of twelve Member States elected in accordance with Article 8, subparagraph (e), for a two-year term. The Government of each elected State shall designate one representative, preferably connected with agricultural and rural development; it may also designate alternate representatives and advisers.
The Board shall determine, in its rules of procedure, the manner of designating the Member States whose representatives shall make up the Committee. A Member State that has concluded its term may not resume membership on the Committee before a period of two years has elapsed.
The Committee shall have the following functions:
a. To perform the functions that may be assigned to it by the Board;
b. To examine the proposed biennial program-budget that the Director General submits to the Board and to make such observations and recommendations as it deems appropriate;
c. To authorize the use of resources of the Working Capital Fund for special purposes;
d. To act as the preparatory committee of the Board;
e. To study and formulate comments and recommendations to the Board and to the General Directorate on matters of interest to the Intitute;
f. To recommend to the Board draft rules of procedure to govern its meetings and those of the Committee, as well as the draft regulations of the General Directorate; and
g. To watch over the observance of the standards of the General Directorate.
The Committee shall hold one regular meeting each year, at the headquarters of the Institute or at the place agreed upon at the preceding meeting. It may hold special meetings at the initiative of any Member State or at the request of the Director General, provided the proposal is approved by a majority of the Board, if it is in session, or by two thirds of the Committee, whose members may be consulted by correspondence.
The Institute shall defray the travel expenses of one representative of each State that is a member of the Committee to participate in its regular meetings.
The presence of the representatives of a majority of the States Members of the Committee shall constitute a quorum. The Committee shall take its decisions by the vote of a majority of its members, except as provided in Article 15, Each member is entitled to one vote.
THE GENERAL DIRECTORATE
The General Directorate shall exercise the functions established in this Convention and. those assigned to it by the Board, and shall also perform the tasks entrusted to it by the Board and the Committee.
The General Directorate shall be under the responsibility of the Director General, who shall be a national of one of the Member States, elected by the Board by the vote of a majority of the Member States, for a four-year term. He may be reelected only once and may not be succeeded by a person of the same nationality.
The Director General, under the supervision of the Board, shall have the legal representation of the Institute, and the responsibility to administer the activities of the General Directorate in order to carry out its functions and obligations. The Director General shall have the following specific functions, which shall be performed in accordance with the standards and regulations of the Institute and the corresponding budgetary provisions:
a. To administer the financial resources of the Institute, in accordance with the decisions of the Board;
b. To determine the number of staff members; to regulate their powers, rights, and duties; to fix their remuneration; and to appoint and remove them, in accordance with the standards established by the Board or the Committee;
c. To prepare the proposed biennial program-budget and to submit it to the Committee, and, with the observations and recommendations of the latter, to the Board;
d. To present to the Board, or to the Committee in the years in which the Board does not meet, an annual report on the activities and financial condition of the Institute;
e. To establish the relations for cooperation and coordination provided for in Article 4 (c) of this Convention; and
f. To participate in the meetings of the Board and the Committee with voice but without vote.
In selecting the personnel of the Institute, first consideration shall be given to efficiency, competence, and integrity; but at the same time, in the recruitment of international personnel of all ranks, importance shall be given to the necessity of obtaining as wide a geographic representation as possible.
In the performance of their duties, the Director General and the personnel of the Institute shall not seek or receive instructions from any government or from any authority outside the Institute, and shall refrain from any action incompatible with their position as officer: of an international organization, responsible only to the Institute.
The Member States shall contribute to the maintenance of the Institute through annual quotas established by the Board, in accordance with the system for calculating quotas of the Organization of American States.
A Member State that is in arrears in the payment of its quotas for more than two complete fiscal years shall have its right to vote suspended in the Board and the Committee. However, the Board or the Committee may permit the Member State to vote if it considers that the failure to pay is due to circumstances beyond the control of that state.
The Institute, ad referendum to the Committee, and through the Director General, may accept special contributions, legacies, bequests, or grants, provided that they are compatible with the nature, purposes, and standards of the Institute.
LEGAL CAPACITY, PRIVILEGES, AND IMMUNITIES
The Institute shall enjoy, in the territory of each of its Member States, the legal capacity, privileges, and immunities necessary for the exercise of its functions and the accomplishment of its purposes.
The representatives of the Member States at the meetings of the Board and of the Committee, as well as the Director General, shall enjoy the privileges and immunities corresponding to their positions and necessary for the independent performance of their duties.
The juridical status of the Institute and the privileges and immunities that should be granted to it and to its personnel shall be determined in accordance with a multilateral agreement to be concluded among the Member States of the Organization of American States, or, when it is deemed necessary, in agreements concluded on a bilateral basis by the Institute with its Member States.
In order to carry out its purposes, and in accordance with the laws in force in the Member States, the Institute may enter into and carry out contracts or agreements; hold funds, real property, movable property, and livestock; and purchase, sell, lease, improve, or operate any goods or property.
HEADQUARTERS AND LANGUAGES
The Institute shall have its headquarters in San JOSE, Costa Rica, and may establish offices for purposes of technical cooperation in the Member States. The central office of the General Directorate shall be located in the headquarters of the Institute.
The official languages of the Institute shall be English, French, Portuguese, and Spanish.
RATIFICATION AND ENTRY INTO FORCE
This convention shall remain open for signature by the Member States of the Organization of American States or of the Inter-American Institute of Agricultural Sciences. Any other American State may accede to it, in accordance with the provision set forth in Article 5, subparagraph (b), of this Convention.
This Convention shall be ratified by the Signatory States in accordance with their respective constitutional procedures. This Convention as well as the instruments of ratification shall be delivered for deposit in the General Secretariat of the Organization of American States. The General Secretariat shall transmit certified copies of this Convention to the governments of the Signatory States and to the General Directorate of the Institute, and shall notify them of the deposit of each instrument of ratification or accession.
This Convention shall enter into force among the States that ratify it when two third; of the States Parties to the 1944 Convention oil the Inter-American Institute of Agricultural Sciences have deposited their respective instruments of ratification. It shall enter into force with respect to the remaining States when they deposit their respective instruments of ratification or accession.
Amendments to this Convention shall be proposed to the Board, and for their approval, the affirmative vote of two thirds of the Member States shall be required. The approved amendments shall enter into force among the ratifying States when two thirds of the Member States have deposited their respective instruments of ratification. They shall enter into force with respect to the remaining States when they deposit their respective instruments of ratification or accession.
This Convention is of a permanent nature and shall remain in force for an indefinite period of time, but it may be denounced by any Member State by means of a notice delivered to the General Secretariat of the Organization of American States. The denunciation shall become effective one year after the corresponding, notice and the Convention. shall cease to be in force with respect to the denouncing State; however, it has to fulfill the obligations that arose from this Convention while it was in force with respect to said State.
This Convention, the English, French, Portuguese, and Spanish texts of which are equally authentic, shall be registered with the Secretariat of the United Nations, in accordance with Article 102 of the Charter of the United Nations, through the General Secretariat of the Organization of American States. The General Secretariat of the Organization of American States shall notify the Secretariat of the United Nations of the signatures, ratifications, accessions, amendments, or denunciations concerning the Convention.
The rights and benefits, as well as the privileges and immunities that have been granted to the Inter-American Institute of Agricultural Sciences and its personnel shall be extended to the Institute and its personnel. The Institute shall take possession of the assets and property belonging to the Inter.-American Institute of Agricultural Sciences and shall assume all the obligations the Inter-American Institute of Agricultural Sciences has contracted.
The Convention on the Inter-American Institute of Agricultural Sciences, opened to signature by the American States on January 15, 1944, shall cease to be in force with respect to the States among which this Convention enters into force, but they shall remain committed to the fulfillment of any pending obligations that arose from the 1944 Convention. The 1944 Convention shall remain in force with respect to the remaining Member States of the Inter-American Institute of Agricultural Science; until they ratify this Convention.
IN WITNESS WHEREOF, the undersigned Plenipotentiaries, their full powers having been found in due and proper form, sign this Convention, which is in English, French, Portuguese, and Spanish, in Washington, D.C., United States of America, in representation of their respective States on the dates indicated next to their signatures.