Further to my message to Parties, Observer States and Observer Organizations dated 6 March 2020, I would like to inform you that as of today 16 March until 12 April 2020, staff of the secretariat will work remotely. This decision is in response to the difficult situation derived from the COVID-19 pandemic and intends to contribute to the efforts to contain the spread of the virus.
The health and well-being of the UNFCCC staff remain my greatest concern. It is therefore essential that we reduce social contact to a minimum and follow the clear recommendations of the World Health Organization, the German Government and local authorities to minimize the risks of transmitting COVID-19. In this context, official missions have also been suspended, only critical travel will be authorized.
While addressing this challenge, our aim is to also continue delivering on our mandates. In line with our business continuity plans only a reduced number of colleagues will remain in office, including those who perform specific tasks related to the maintenance of the secretariat’s systems, software and servers, to ensure internet connectivity and support for the organization and delivery of virtual meetings.
I have requested all Directors to implement clear guidelines and procedures in order to maintain the continued operations of the secretariat during this time. We are exploring the most advantageous and creative ways, through remote work and modern technology, to ensure our ongoing support to the intergovernmental process on climate change.
I trust that we will continue to count on your support in these challenging times, and you may rest assured of my and the entire secretariat’s commitment to continue to provide high quality support to you.