European Union Office to Hong Kong and Macao

Informal consultations on the UN General Assembly First Committee Resolution - 40th Anniversary of the UN Institute for Disarmament Research (UNIDIR) - EU Statement

Brussels, 24/09/2020 - 00:00, UNIQUE ID: 200925_5
Statements on behalf of the EU

Mr. Chair,

On behalf of the European Union and the Candidate Countries the Republic of North Macedonia[*], Montenegro*, Serbia* and Albania*, the country of the Stabilisation and Association Process and potential candidate Bosnia and Herzegovina and the EFTA country Iceland, member of the European Economic Area, as well as the Republic of Moldova and Georgia, I would like to thank France and Germany for organising informal consultations on the quinquennial draft resolution "40th Anniversary of the UN Institute for Disarmament Research (UNIDIR)" to be tabled at the upcoming 75th UN General Assembly First Committee.

The EU's long-time support for UNIDIR is visibly manifested in the EU's sustained significant political and financial contributions to a number of treaties, conventions, and other agreements. This significant contribution supports both the UN Office for Disarmament Affairs (UNODA) and UNIDIR in carrying out various projects in the area of disarmament and non-proliferation.

In congratulating UNIDIR on its 40th anniversary, I want to stress that the EU highly values its role and work as a stand-alone, autonomous institution of the disarmament machinery producing high-quality and impartial research and implementing initiatives that can help build common understanding and move disarmament processes forward. We appreciate UNIDIR’s important and substantive contributions, including across its five key programme areas: Weapons of Mass Destruction, Security and Technology, Conventional arms, Gender and Disarmament, and the Middle East Weapons of Mass Destruction Free-Zone.

A stable and sustainable financial basis in order to uphold core functions and fulfil its mandate is essential for UNIDIR to maintain its independent role. In particular, we believe that UNIDIR, as a key component of the UN disarmament machinery, should receive special conditions, if seated at the Palais des Nations in Geneva, the centre of the international disarmament hub. Moreover, the core budget of UNIDIR should reflect the increased outreach and broad portfolio of the Institutes’ activities – both in Geneva and in other regions – and we welcome the OP8 which invites the UN Secretary General to submit a proposal for an increase in the subvention to the Institute. The EU notes with appreciation UN Member States' contributions to UNIDIR's annual budget and supports all efforts towards a more sustainable funding structure and operating model, as proposed in the draft resolution.

In conclusion, the EU supports the draft resolution and encourages all countries to join the consensus.

Thank you, Mr. Chair

[*] The Republic of North Macedonia, Montenegro, Serbia and Albania continue to be part of the Stabilisation and Association Process.