On behalf of the European Union and its Member States, please allow me to start by expressing once again our strong support for the reform of the UN Development System, and by thanking the SG, the DSG, UNDCO and the Transition team for all the work over the last year.
We look forward to this session of the ECOSOC's Operational Activities Segment, and to hearing from Heads of agencies and Resident Coordinators about implementation of these reforms on the ground, including the challenges they face.
We must never forget that the purpose of the UN reforms is a UN to respond better to the needs in order to support the implementation of the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development. It is crucial that all UNDS entities support implementation of the reforms, including financing the new system, and that we ensure ownership of these reforms by the whole system. It is a joint responsibility and everyone needs to be fully on board and do their part. One concrete example is to align the Country Programme Documents to the UNSDCFs.
For this to happen, information on progress made and challenges faced all reform tracks should be shared in a transparent manner within the system and with the membership, including to the different UN HQs and to the UNCTs. We will of course also do our part in the Boards.
The report is overall robust; outlining progress to-date in clear terms and presenting a candid reflection on the need for more collaboration and joined up work within the system. It eloquently brings all the strands of this complex reform together.
Nonetheless, there are points that we would like to highlight:
The JIU has produced an interesting report containing specific recommendations and advocating a combination of programmatic decentralisation and service delivery centralisation. We believe it provides useful ideas to move forward.
We welcome the Funding Compact and the interactive processes in which it was developed. In this context, we would like to recall our reservations on commitment 6 of the Funding Compact. It is our understanding that the costs necessary to achieve those savings are to be found within existing resources, supplemented if needed by in-kind contributions. The target is not contingent on additional financial resources, as the DSG confirmed during her briefing earlier this month.
In order to address both gaps and overlaps in the UNDS operations while building on the comparative advantage of the different UNDS entities, the System-Wide Strategic Document will need to be much more operational, specific and concrete than the outline that has been shared, which is more descriptive than results-oriented. We look forward to receiving the new report as soon as possible, as we consider it an essential element of these reforms.
Finally, for these reforms to succeed, the interlinkages between the three reform strands must be factored in. It is critical to the SG’s prevention agenda that RCs are able to effectively coordinate and drive joint analysis, joint planning and collective outcomes across all UN actors. The report states this is not yet happening to the extent that it should. We hope to see rapid progress in this area.
Let me conclude by repeating the EU's determination to continue our engagement to ensure the success of these reforms