Delegation of the European Union
to the United Nations - New York

EU Statement – United Nations 5th Committee: Proposed programme budget 2020

New York, 08/10/2019 - 17:18, UNIQUE ID: 191008_19
Statements on behalf of the EU

8 October 2019, New York - Statement on behalf of the EU and its Member States by H.E. Mr. João Vale de Almeida, Head of Delegation, Delegation of the European Union to the United Nations, 74th Session of the General Assembly Fifth Committee Main Session Agenda items:136. Programme planning/135. Proposed programme budget 2020

Mr. Chair,

I have the honour to speak on behalf of the Member States of the European Union.


The Candidate Countries Turkey, the Republic of North Macedonia*, Montenegro*, Serbia* and Albania*, the country of the Stabilisation and Association Process and potential candidate Bosnia and Herzegovina, as well as Ukraine and the Republic of Moldova, align themselves with this statement.


Mr. Chair,

I would first like to thank the Secretary-General for the introduction of the United Nations Proposed Programme-Budget for 2020. Furthermore, I would like to thank Mr. Collen Vixen Kelapile, Chair of the fifty-ninth session of the Committee for Programme and Coordination, as well as Mr. Cihan Terzi, Chair of the Advisory Committee on Administrative and Budgetary Questions, for presenting us the reports of their respective committees.

We would like to thank you, Mr. Secretary-General, for presenting us with a programme-budget that is focused clearly on results and that in our view fairly and accurately reflects the needs of the Organisation. We recognize the efforts that have been made to make this budget more effective and efficient while equally taking into account new and emerging mandates and more modern working methods in support functions. This is a fine balance and we appreciate your work.

More than ever the UN is called upon to respond to emerging challenges in a flexible and yet integrated way; it needs to be more dynamic in a rapidly changing world and yet effective in delivering for people. Moving to an annual budget cycle, the programme-budget should now be able to reflect this reality and need for agility. It should be strategic, with an overall level of resources that ensures effective delivery both at headquarters and even more so in the field. It should provide enough flexibility for you, Mr. Secretary-General and your senior team to manage for results while enticing efficiencies at all levels of the Organisation.

We believe that progress has already been achieved in this regard: the EU has always been a staunch supporter of your reform agenda and we welcome the results of the budget reform so far. In the meantime, we also recognize that further measures can and should be taken to enhance the responsiveness of the programme-budget. However, the brightest minds of the Secretariat should be focused on reform and mandate delivery, not on liquidity management and daily cash survival. We therefore call on all member states to pay their full contributions in a timely manner, in order to avoid making an overly rigid budget process even more inflexible.

When this committee will consider your proposals in detail, we will endeavor to make sure that our collective decision enables you to address threats to international peace and security, to defend the principles of the rule of law as well as human rights, to support the Sustainable Development Goals and to take action against global warming. Our decision should enable you to be flexible, responsive, and nimble. This committee plays a key role in supporting your vision and measures towards better support structures and smarter decentralization, towards more transparency and stronger accountability. All this will have to be reflected in our programme-budget resolution.


Mr. Chair,

As staunch defenders of the principle of effective multilateralism, we would like to reiterate our commitment to providing the necessary resources to the Organisation to fulfil the mandates we, Member States, have given it. We will also continue to support management reform processes to make the Organisation work more effectively and efficiently.

We therefore look forward to working closely with all groups and delegations with the aim of agreeing on a sustainable and strong UN programme-budget for the year 2020. This programme-budget should match the level of ambition we have collectively set for this organization in terms of vision, transparency and effectiveness.

Thank you.


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


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