Communication by the UN/CEFACT Forum Management Group
This is to inform you that the Forum Management Group has decided to cancel the scheduled 16th session of the UN/CEFACT Forum at the United Nations Economic Commission for Asia and the Pacific (UNESCAP), Bangkok, Thailand, from 26 to 30 April 2010.
This decision has been taken in the light of the latest available information and after consultations with the UNECE secretariat and the UNESCAP secretariat.
The Forum Management Group considers it is not in a position to recommend to participants that it is now safe for them to travel to Bangkok, given the continuing civil unrest in the city and the "high risk" rating given for travel to Thailand in advice issued by some 40 Governments. It would therefore be difficult, in the event of any unforeseen incident involving the safety of participants, to justify any decision to continue with the Bangkok Forum.
In coming to its decision, the Forum Management Group has also taken into account: the input received from the Bureau, the UNECE secretariat and some UN/CEFACT Heads of Delegation and Forum members registered for the Bangkok Forum; the fact that, in the event of incidents, insurance cover for "civil unrest" might well be unavailable; and the fact that attendance could be fairly low as a number of participants registered for the Forum have cancelled their trip to Bangkok or intend to do so.
Taking all the above factors in to account, the Forum Management Group has decided, with the assent of the Bureau, that cancellation would be the most responsible decision in the circumstances. The Forum Management Group regrets the inconvenience caused to Forum members registered to participate in the Bangkok forum. The Forum Management Group also would like to express its sincere gratitude to UNESCAP for all of the efforts it made in preparing for the Forum and regrets for its cancellation.
Plans for interim meetings of UN/CEFACT Working Groups will be reviewed in the coming weeks, as well as preparations for the next Forum meeting which will be held in Geneva, Switzerland, 30 August to 3 September 2010.