As to the content of the Convention, Helga Tabuchi did not see any major obstacle on ratification. However she informed the body that substantial changes occurred in Japanese higher education in the last 20 more years. There are new developments in higher education that should be addressed by UNESCO in the Regional Convention.
The Bruneian government is still in the process of learning the UNESCO mutual recognition agreement.
The original document seems too prescriptive and the document is still being reviewed by the attorney general.
The new leadership in the Ministry of Education will hopefully facilitate ratification of the treaty. Ninnat (ASAHIL) declared that Thailand is supporting the Convention, although is concerned about the process of ratification (not wording and content). Thailand is going through political upheaval, which may hinder the process.
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The representative was hopeful that a useful and constructive step would be taken to ensure quality in higher education programmes for recognition. He recommended the need for more information-sharing from Member States to have a better understanding of the processes involved in promoting academic mobility.
Johannes Gunawan from Indonesia said that Indonesia is in the middle of the ratification process. He said that ratification may be sought soon. He raised concern over the agreed revision process, noting that Indonesia might have to start the whole ratification process again.
With the issue raised by Indonesia, Molly Lee clarified that until the new version has been adopted in the UNESCO General Conference, the old version will still be in force.
The Working Group Chair, Nona Ricafort, ended the session by acknowledging the Korean National Committee for UNESCO, the Korean Council for University Education, the Secretariat (headed by Molly Lee) and the Working Group members (Tony Davies, Sharifah Hapsah, Margaret Proctor and Ethel Valenzuela). She thanked all for the excellent organization of the meeting, the warm hospitality and professional work done on the draft revision of the Regional Convention.
Ninth Session of the Regional Committee