on the long-term housing needs of the WTO


The Swiss Federal Council, on behalf of the Swiss Confederation,

on the one hand

and

the World Trade Organization (WTO),

on the other hand

(hereinafter "the Signatories"), represented by the undersigned,

Recognizing the importance of the WTO's mission for relations between its Members,

Determined to maintain the WTO's headquarters in Switzerland,

Determined to respond to the WTO's long-term housing needs,

Bearing in mind the WTO's wish to be located at a single site,

Considering that the question of the site's external and peripheral security will be the subject of a separate arrangement, and that the use of the buildings formerly occupied by the Montessori School and those occupied by the Crèche du lac remains to be decided in this context,

Taking account of the letter sent by Mr Pascal Lamy, Director-General of the WTO, to Federal Councillor Micheline Calmy-Rey, Head of the Federal Department of Foreign Affairs, on 19 December 2007, and the reply thereto dated 30 January 2008,

Desirous that these matters should be regulated by an agreement,

Have agreed as follows, subject to approval of the necessary loans by the Federal Assembly.


Chapter 1: PURPOSE

Article 1

1. In keeping with the calendar set forth in Article 14 below, the purpose of this Agreement is:

(a) Renovation of the Centre William Rappard (hereinafter the CWR);

(b) intra-mural adaptation and extension of the CWR;

(c) extra-mural extension (new building);

(d) transitional measures (temporary premises);

(e) parking space;

(f) densification of the William Rappard conference room;

(g) financial obligations and allocation of costs;

(h) adaptation of the Infrastructure Contract of 2 June 1995;

(i) purchase of the project studies for the construction of a building at the Avenue de France.

2. Indents (a) to (i) of paragraph 1 above shall be undertaken as part of a single project that includes a design and a technical plan to cover all the elements of the renovation and construction.

3. Decisions relating to the implementation of indents (a) to (g) of paragraph 1 shall be made by a building commission comprising an equal number of representatives of the Swiss Confederation and of the WTO.


Chapter 2: SCOPE

Article 2 Renovation of the CWR

1. The entire CWR building and technical infrastructure shall be renovated on the basis of the building plan agreed between the WTO and the Swiss Confederation.

2. The renovation shall consist mainly of:

(a) Refurbishment and modernization of offices, common areas and meeting rooms;

(b) optimization of office spaces and common areas;

(c) improvement of thermal insulation of interior facades;

(d) upgrading of fluid networks (plumbing, heating, technical cooling systems, electricity, computer cabling, waste water separation) and fire safety equipment (fire protection and detection);

(e) replacement of the lifts;

(f) restoration and cleaning of the outer surfaces of the building.

3. The furniture and the installations and equipment put in place by the WTO are not included in the renovation.

Article 3 Intra-mural adaptation and extension of the CWR

1. Work shall be conducted within the CWR to adapt and extend the premises within the existing footprint on the basis of a building plan agreed between the WTO and the Swiss Confederation.

2. This intra-mural adaptation and extension shall consist of:

(a) Creating a central hub in the northern courtyard to link up the main conference areas. This space will house the services needed for key activities of WTO Members;

(b) creating conference rooms in the southern courtyard (former IUHEI library);

(c) creating a meeting room on the ground floor where the delegates' cafeteria is currently located;

(d) transforming the current WTO library into a conference room;

(e) transforming the area located above the WTO library into a meeting room.

Article 4 Extra-mural extension (new building)

1. The CWR shall be extended beyond its current footprint on the basis of a building plan agreed between the WTO and the Swiss Confederation.

2. The extra-mural extension shall consist mainly of:

(a) Building a new office building on the current parking area in front of the south entrance of the CWR. This building will accommodate:

I. Approximately 300 work places for WTO staff, together with the necessary associated facilities;

II. general services such as documents reproduction and the library;

III. a cafeteria with its production unit;

IV. the thermal power installations serving the entire site;

V. an underground car park for 200 vehicles.

(b) Building a covered passageway between the main entrance of the CWR building and the William Rappard conference room.

Article 5 Transitional measures (temporary premises)

1. The Swiss Confederation shall provide the WTO with premises, free of charge, to replace the Rue Rothschild annexe and to meet the temporary needs of the Secretariat during the renovation work provided for in Article 1, paragraph 1(a) to (c) in accordance with the timetable set forth in Article 14 below.

2. The premises in question consist of a building located at the Chemin des Mines, with an area of approximately 5,500 sq. metres and a capacity of 250 persons.



3. The building shall be refurbished by its owner in accordance with the Descriptif des travaux de rénovation (specifications for the renovation work) agreed between the owner and FIPOI.

4. If the Swiss Confederation does not hand over all of the items specified in Article 1, paragraph 1(a) to (c) to the WTO within the period set forth in the timetable under Article 14, it shall continue to assume the aforementioned rental costs until such time as the said items are handed over, except where the WTO is responsible for the delay.

5. Should it not be possible to build the extra-mural extension, Article 13 would apply.

Article 6 Parking space

1. For the duration of the rental by the Swiss Confederation of the offices at the Chemin des Mines, 150 parking spaces will be made available to the WTO free of charge to compensate for the spaces lost on the CWR grounds during the work.

2. Upon completion of the project, the WTO should have a total of at least 630 parking spaces as follows:

(a) 200 places in the CWR underground car park beneath the new building;

(b) 30 surface parking places at the CWR;

(c) At least 400 places, financed for the WTO by the Canton of Geneva in accordance with the Infrastructure Contract of 2 June 1995, to be made available in the future Sécheron car park which the Canton of Geneva has undertaken to build.

3. During the construction of the car park mentioned in paragraph 2(c) above, the Swiss Confederation shall ensure that at least 400 parking spaces are made available to the WTO in addition to the 150 spaces mentioned in paragraph 1 above.

Article 7 Densification of the William Rappard conference room

The William Rappard conference room shall be densified on the basis of a building plan agreed between the WTO and the Swiss Confederation as follows:

(a) Increase in the capacity of the room by optimizing the furniture layout;

(b) adaptation of audiovisual and simultaneous interpretation equipment to the new capacity;

(c) adaptation of air-conditioning to the new capacity.

Article 8 Financial obligations and allocation of costs

1. The parties plan to carry out this project within an overall financial limit amounting, in the light of current conditions and hypotheses, to 130 million Swiss francs. This figure comprises:

(a) An interest-free FIPOI loan of 60 million Swiss francs repayable over a period of 50 years, which is the upper limit of the contribution by the WTO Membership to the project; and

(b) a non-repayable contribution of 70 million Swiss francs from the Swiss Confederation, which is the upper limit of its contribution to the project.

2. The WTO and the Swiss Confederation shall endeavour to ensure that the project remains within the above-mentioned limit.

3. The FIPOI loan of 60 million francs mentioned in paragraph 1(a) above covers:

(a) The new building (not counting the car park);

(b) intra-mural extension;

(c) the covered passageway.

4. The Swiss Confederation's contribution of 70 million francs mentioned in paragraph 1(b) above covers:

(a) Renovation of the CWR;

(b) densification of the William Rappard conference room;

(c) the car park under the new building;

(d) the temporary premises (Chemin des Mines).

Article 9 Ownership of the CWR building

5. It should be borne in mind that, as reflected in the letter of 1 June 1995 from the Swiss Federal Council to the Director-General of the WTO and in the Infrastructure Contract concluded on 2 June 1995 between the Swiss Confederation, the Republic and Canton of Geneva, FIPOI and the WTO, the WTO has already accepted full ownership of the CWR building.

Article 10: Ownership of the extra-mural extension

As a prerequisite to the granting of the FIPOI loan and to ensure that there is no conflict of ownership between the CWR and its extra-mural extension, the WTO accepts ownership of the said extension upon its completion. This acceptance is without prejudice to the content of any agreement concerning, inter alia, the duration of the property right, its renewal, and the conditions governing the retrocession of the extra-mural extension of the CWR to FIPOI.

Article 11 Purchase of the project studies for the construction of a building at the Avenue de France

1. The parties recall that a loan contract was concluded between FIPOI and the WTO on 17 December 2003, followed by two amendments on 28 January 2005 and 5 December 2006 respectively, providing for a 5 million Swiss franc loan to the WTO to finance studies relating to the preliminary design, the draft project, the overall estimate, and the calls for tenders for the construction of a new building for the WTO at the Avenue de France, and that the WTO spent an additional amount of 153,054.39 Swiss francs for the same purpose.

2. The parties agree that the project covered by this Agreement nullifies the project for the construction of the building at the Avenue de France.

3. The parties note that the Conseil de foundation (Foundation Council) of FIPOI decided, on 4 April 2008, to take over from the WTO the studies relating to the preliminary design, the draft project, and the overall estimate for the construction of a new building originally intended for the WTO at the Avenue de France.

4. In these circumstances, the WTO agrees to sell the said studies to FIPOI for a total of 5,153,054.39 francs, representing the financing costs incurred, in accordance with an arrangement to be concluded between the WTO and FIPOI.

5. The WTO undertakes to ensure that of the total sales price of 5,153,054.39 francs, five million francs are paid to FIPOI as a reimbursement of the loan that FIPOI granted for the above-mentioned studies on 17 December 2003. The WTO shall retain 153,054.39 francs to cover its own advance payments towards the realization of the said studies.

Article 12 Compliance with time-limits

The project shall be carried out within the shortest time reasonably possible, subject to and taking account of any technical constraints or possible delays in the legislative, parliamentary and administrative procedures required for its completion – inter alia for the construction of the new building – including, but not limited to, obtaining loans and building permits, modification of the zoning plan in the vicinity of the CWR, amendment of the cantonal law on the protection of the lakeshore, etc.

Article 13 Failure to build the extra-mural extension of the CWR

If, for any reason for which the WTO cannot be held directly responsible, it is not possible to build the extra-mural extension, the WTO shall accept the items already completed and the Confederation shall place at the WTO's disposal, on conditions to be mutually agreed, facilities with a capacity of 300 work places in the immediate vicinity of the CWR during the time required for the WTO and the Swiss Confederation to agree on a single-site solution.

Article 14 Timetable

1. The timetable for the renovation and intra-mural extension work will be as follows:

(a) Renovation of the CWR

I. Mid-2008: application for a building permit for the renovation of the CWR and the densification of the William Rappard conference room;

II. 2009: beginning of the renovation work;

III. Mid-2011: end of renovation work.

(b) Intra-mural extension

I. Beginning of 2009: application for a building permit;

II. Beginning of 2010: beginning of extension work in the CWR;

III. End of 2012: end of the intra-mural extension work.

2. The timetable for the extra-mural extension work (new building) will be as follows:

I. 2008-2010: planning and preparation (including, inter alia, application for a building permit, modification of the zoning plan and amendment of the Cantonal law on the protection of the lakeshore);

II. Beginning of 2011-2012: construction of the new building;

III. End of 2012: handing over of the new building to the WTO.


Chapter 3: FINAL CLAUSES

Article 15 Adaptation of the Infrastructure Contract signed on 2 June 1995 by the Swiss Confederation, the Canton of Geneva, FIPOI, and the WTO

The parties shall discuss the impact of this Agreement on the above-mentioned Infrastructure Contract and shall take such measures as are necessary to bring the said Contract into conformity with this Agreement by the end of 2010.

Article 16 Arbitration Clause

Any dispute arising with regard to the conclusion, interpretation or execution of this Agreement shall be submitted to the dispute settlement procedure provided for in Article 48 of the Agreement concluded on 2 June 1995 between the Swiss Confederation and the World Trade Organization to determine the legal status of the Organization in Switzerland (Headquarters Agreement).

Article 17 Entry into force

This Agreement shall enter into force for each of the Parties on the date of its signature.

Article 18 Duration of the Agreement

This Agreement shall terminate by mutual agreement between the Parties with the hand over to the WTO of the items specified in Article 1, paragraph 1(a), (b), (c), (e) and (f).

Article 19 Termination of the Agreement

Should it not be possible to complete the project according to the agreed timetable or a revised timetable mutually agreed between the parties, this Agreement could be terminated by mutual agreement between the parties.

In witness whereof, the representatives of the two Signatories, duly authorized to that effect, have signed the present Agreement,

Done in duplicate at ............................................ on ............................................ in French.

For the Swiss Federal Council For the WTO


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