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The Structure and Institutions related to the Energy Charter Process are described in Part VII of the Energy Charter Treaty, in particular in Articles 34 and 35:



  1. The Contracting Parties shall meet periodically in the Energy Charter Conference (referred to herein as the “Charter Conference”) at which each Contracting Party shall be entitled to have one representative. Ordinary meetings shall be held at intervals determined by the Charter Conference.
  2. Extraordinary meetings of the Charter Conference may be held at such times as may be determined by the Charter Conference, or at the written request of any Contracting Party, provided that, within six weeks of the request being communicated to the Contracting Parties by the Secretariat, it is supported by at least one-third of the Contracting Parties.
  3. The functions of the Charter Conference shall be to:

    • carry out the duties assigned to it by this Treaty and any Protocols;
    • keep under review and facilitate the implementation of the principles of the Charter and of the provisions of this Treaty and the Protocols;
    • facilitate in accordance with this Treaty and the Protocols the co-ordination of appropriate general measures to carry out the principles of the Charter;
    • consider and adopt programmes of work to be carried out by the Secretariat;
    • consider and approve the annual accounts and budget of the Secretariat;
    • consider and approve or adopt the terms of any headquarters or other agreement, including privileges and immunities considered necessary for the Charter Conference and the Secretariat;
    • encourage co-operative efforts aimed at facilitating and promoting market oriented reforms and modernization of energy sectors in those countries of Central and Eastern Europe and the former Union of Soviet Socialist Republics undergoing economic transition;
    • authorize and approve the terms of reference for the negotiation of Protocols, and consider and adopt the texts thereof and of amendments thereto;
    • authorize the negotiation of Declarations, and approve their issuance;
    • decide on accessions to this Treaty;
    • authorize the negotiation of and consider and approve or adopt association agreements;
    • consider and adopt texts of amendments to this Treaty;
    • consider and approve modifications of and technical changes to the Annexes to this Treaty;
    • appoint the Secretary-General and take all decisions necessary for the establishment and functioning of the Secretariat including the structure, staff levels and standard terms of employment of officials and employees.

  4. In the performance of its duties, the Charter Conference, through the Secretariat, shall co-operate with and make as full a use as possible, consistently with economy and efficiency, of the services and programmes of other institutions and organizations with established competence in matters related to the objectives of this Treaty.
  5. The Charter Conference may establish such subsidiary bodies as it considers appropriate for the performance of its duties.
  6. The Charter Conference shall consider and adopt rules of procedure and financial rules.
  7. In 1999 and thereafter at intervals (of not more than five years) to be determined by the Charter Conference, the Charter Conference shall thoroughly review the functions provided for in this Treaty in the light of the extent to which the provisions of the Treaty and Protocols have been implemented. At the conclusion of each review the Charter Conference may amend or abolish the functions specified in paragraph (3) and may discharge the Secretariat.



  1. In carrying out its duties, the Charter Conference shall have a Secretariat which shall be composed of a Secretary-General and such staff as are the minimum consistent with efficient performance.
  2. The Secretary-General shall be appointed by the Charter Conference. The first such appointment shall be for a maximum period of five years.
  3. In the performance of its duties the Secretariat shall be responsible to and report to the Charter Conference.
  4. The Secretariat shall provide the Charter Conference with all necessary assistance for the performance of its duties and shall carry out the functions assigned to it in this Treaty or in any Protocol and any other functions assigned to it by the Charter Conference.
  5. The Secretariat may enter into such administrative and contractual arrangements as may be required for the effective discharge of its functions.