As envisaged in the Overarching Policy Strategy, in paragraph 19 on financial considerations, initial capacity building activities for the implementation of SAICM objectives are supported by the Quick Start Programme (QSP). The QSP includes a voluntary, time-limited trust fund, administered by the United Nations Environment Programme, and multilateral, bilateral and other forms of cooperation.
The International Conference on Chemicals Management (ICCM) decided in resolution I/4 to establish the “Quick Start Programme for the implementation of SAICM objectives, building upon the outcomes of the ICCM and the Bali Strategic Plan for Technology Support and Capacity building.”
The objective of the QSP is to “support initial enabling capacity building and implementation activities in developing countries, least developed countries, small island developing States and countries with economies in transition.”
The strategic priorities defined by the ICCM highlight that the QSP should mobilize resources for national priority initial enabling activities in keeping with the work areas set out in the strategic objectives of section IV of the Overarching Policy Strategy, in particular:
- Development or updating of national chemical profiles and the identification of capacity needs for sound chemicals management;
- Development and strengthening of national chemicals management institutions, plans, programmes and activities to implement the Strategic Approach, building upon work conducted to implement international chemicals-related agreements and initiatives;
- Undertaking analysis, interagency coordination, and public participation activities directed at enabling the implementation of the Strategic Approach by integrating – i.e., mainstreaming – the sound management of chemicals in national strategies, and thereby informing development assistance cooperation priorities.
ICCM resolution I/4 established two main oversight bodies for the QSP and the trust fund:
Resolution I/4 of the ICCM invited Governments in a position to do so, regional economic integration organizations, intergovernmental organizations, the private sector, including industry, foundations, non-governmental organizations and other stakeholders, to contribute to the QSP.
QSP contributions can be separated between donations to the QSP trust fund and in-kind or financial assistance to the non-trust fund QSP.
The QSP business plan sets out a resource mobilization strategy to help ensure the sustainability of the QSP, including through the replenishment of its trust fund on a steady and equitable basis by as broad a donor group as possible. The business plan was adopted by the QSP Executive Board in May 2007 and updated in July 2008.
Since its establishment, there have been 14 application rounds to the QSP Trust Fund, with 184 projects approved by the QSP Trust Fund Implementation Committee for funding valued at close to US$37 million. The project portfolio covers 108 different countries, including 54 Least Developed Countries (LDCs) and/or Small Island Developing States (SIDS).