The UNTOC Review Mechanism is a peer review process that will support States parties to the Convention and the Protocols in the effective implementation of these instruments, as well as help States parties to identify and substantiate specific needs for technical assistance and to promote international cooperation.
According to the resolution 9/1, the Review Mechanism, shall– among others: be transparent, efficient, non-intrusive, inclusive and impartial; not produce any form of ranking; and be non-adversarial and non-punitive.
The review process of the implementation of UNTOC and its Protocols follows two tracks: a general review that will be undertaken in the Plenary of the Conference of the Parties, and country reviews that will be carried out through desk reviews and discussions pertaining to which will be undertaken in the COP working groups consistent with their areas of expertise.
The general review will be based on a report prepared by the Secretariat on trends, patterns and best practices identified in the context of the country reviews. The report will serve as the basis for further discussion in the plenary of the Conference of the Parties.
The second track consists of the country reviews. In accordance with the Procedures and rules, each State is reviewed for each instrument to which it is a party to by two others – one from the same regional group and another from a different one. The States parties are divided through drawing of lots into three groups to start their reviews staggered in three consecutive years. All articles of the Organized Crime Convention and its Protocols have been divided into four thematic clusters, and the review process for the four instruments has also been divided accordingly into four phases of two years each.
Each phase of the review process follows four steps:
1. Firstly the country under review, within six months from the beginning of its review, shall complete a self-assessment questionnaire on the implementation of the thematic cluster under review.
2. The responses to the self-assessment questionnaire will be reviewed by the reviewing States which will provide a written feedback to the State under review on the measures taken in the implementation of the Convention and relevant Protocols, as well as on the successes and challenges of such implementation. The written feedback shall be provided to the State under review within a timeframe not exceeding six months from the reception of the questionnaire. The feedback may also include request for further clarification or additional information.
3. At the final stage of the review process, each reviewing State, in close cooperation with the State under review and with assistance of the Secretariat, will prepare a list of observations indicating any gaps and challenges in the implementation of the provisions under review, best practices, suggestions and any technical assistance needs. The list will be based on the information provided by the State under review in the self-assessment questionnaire and the subsequent dialogue between the States. The lists of observations will be shared with the Working Groups of the Conference of the Parties (technical assistance, international cooperation, trafficking in persons, smuggling of migrants and firearms) based on their thematic relevance.
4. Finally, a short summary not exceeding 1,500 words of the list will be translated into all six official UN languages and made available for the Conference and its working groups.