The responsibility for the National Reporting process under CMS and its instruments lies with the designated NFP for each country. The NFPs can however appoint a designated National Respondent to run the National Reporting process in their place.
Most CMS Family instruments have their own National Report Format. The format defines which type of information needs to be reported by the countries under each Instrument. Broadly the categories of information concern the status of the migratory species covered by the instrument, threats and pressures facing them, relevant responses taken as well as knowledge, capacity, institutional and financial matters.
The review should look for gaps and how existing legislation and policy support the implementation of the instruments. A review should not only focus on the existence of national legislation but also encompass its enforcement.
The data and information gathered in the National Reports, when objective and comprehensive, are of great value for many processes and user groups. For this reason it is important that the data be as complete and accurate as possible. National Reports functions as a “one-stop-shop” for a country’s official information on migratory species and the measures undertaken to conserve them. Through this, the Government fulfills its obligations under CMS and its instruments.
National Reporting under CMS and its instruments, if carried out properly, has numerous benefits for the reporting countries: • The National Reporting process can serve as an incentive for the systematic collection of data and information related to migratory species. It also provides for the regular updating of this data and information and for some countries can provide a unique framework for collating and archiving data and information.
All CMS Family instruments include provisions for the preparation and submission of National Reports prior to meetings of their decision-making body. However, obligations differ depending on the legal status of the CMS instrument. For CMS and its Agreements - which are legally binding - reporting is an obligation for each Party. However, there is no mandatory reporting requirement under the MOUs, which are legally non-binding in nature. Nonetheless, Signatories to these MOUs are requested to make periodic reports
National Reporting is an integral part of the overall implementation process of the CMS Family instruments. This process usually occurs at the end of the intersessional period before the meetings of the decision-making bodies. However, it should also be seen as a continuous underlying process influencing the planning of activities, their implementation and the assessment of progress made under CMS and each of its instruments.