Appointment of Members to Subsidiary Bodies

Appointment of experts to Scientific and Technical Subsidiary Bodies

CMS and some of its instruments establish a number of subsidiary bodies to which Member States are invited to appoint expert members to provide technical and scientific advice. In the case of ASCOBANS members of the Advisory Committee have a double function.

Appointment of NFPs

“The people chosen to be the NFPs are key to breathing life into the CMS Family. Our enthusiasm is decisive for saving migratory species.”

James Njogu, Kenya


Under CMS and its instruments, Member States are requested to appoint NFPs. The Secretariats and Coordinating Units are required to promote communication and collaboration with and among the Member States. To fulfill this responsibility the Secretariats and Coordinating Units maintain a list of the NFPs designated by the governments of Member States.

Action required from the NFP and other actors

  Appointment of CMS Family NFPs and other representatives
NFPs and other representatives  NFP: Initiate appointments of NFPs, Standing Committee representatives and other experts and obtain official signed letter of appointment from the responsible minister or government office.
Responsible Minister: Fill in and sign official appointment form

Funding of the CMS Family: Voluntary Contributions

CMS and the Agreements

In the case of CMS and the legally-binding Agreements, voluntary contributions normally complement the assessed ones and are solicited by the Secretariats to fund projects and other initiative that are not covered by the regular budget.


Funding for MOUs normally takes the form of ad hoc voluntary contributions from Signatories as well as other interested countries.

Funding of the CMS Family: Assessed Contributions

Each Party to a legally binding-instrument (CMS and Agreements) is required to financially contribute to the budget adopted by the decision-making body.

Secretariats and Coordinating Units

Secretariats and Coordinating Units provide administrative support to their instruments. Normally the decision-making body of the instrument determines the budget to be allocated to the Secretariat/Coordinating Unit including the number of posts and functions. Where MOUs have dedicated Coordinating Units, they are usually funded by voluntary contributions.

Subsidiary Bodies

Bodies that provide Intersessional policy and Administrative Guidance

Decision-making Bodies

The principal decision-making body for the Convention is the Conference of the Parties (COP) which meets once every three years. For most of the legally binding Agreements, instead of a COP, there is a Meeting of the Parties or MOP (the exception is the Wadden Sea Seals Agreement which is overseen by the Wadden Sea Board made up of representatives of the three Range States, Denmark, Germany and the Netherlands); the MOP meets every three or four years, depending on the provisions of each Agreement agreed by the Parties. MOUs have Meetings of the Signatories (MOS).

Bodies of CMS and its Instruments

Within a CMS Family instrument, functions are generally split among a number of bodies. These bodies can be broadly classified as (1) Secretariats or Coordinating Units (administrative); (2) decision-making bodies (COP/MOP/MOS) and the subsidiary bodies (usually called the Standing Committee) providing guidance between the meetings of decision-making bodies and (3) scientific and technical advice (e.g. Scientific Council).

Membership of CMS and its Instruments

In addition to the current 119 Parties to CMS (as of September 2013), a further 33 countries are Member States to instruments (as of June 2013), while many of the 119 are also Parties and signatories to Agreements and MOUs (e.g. France is Party to five of the seven Agreements and signatory to five of the MOUs, and Senegal is Party to one Agreements and a signatory to six MOUs). In many cases joining one of these instruments has been a first step to join the mother Convention.