European Union External Action

EU & UN reiterate partnership with Guterres visit to Brussels

16/05/2018 - 16:15

The Secretary-General of the United Nations, António Guterres was in Brussels for talks on 15-16 May with senior EU leaders including European Council President Donald Tusk, European Commission President Jean-Claude Juncker and High Representative/Vice-President Federica Mogherini. He also met all the members of the European Commission.

EU leaders reiterated the EU's commitment to the UN and to multilateralism. In their talks they also touched upon the nuclear accord with Iran,  EU-UN relations, UN reform, the Sustainable Development Goals; foreign policy issues such as Syria and advancing the trilateral European Union – United Nations – African Union cooperation on Libya; as well as global challenges, including climate change and migration.

Speaking at a press point with António Guterres after the meeting, President  Juncker said the world was in "disarray" and that the EU was totally attached to the multilateral system of which the UN at its heart.

The EU sees the UN as fundamental to international governance. To respond successfully to global crises, threats and challenges, the international community needs an efficient multilateral system, founded on universal rules and values. The United Nations is both: a key EU partner and an indispensable global forum for tackling global challenges, within the overall framework of the 2030 Agenda and its 17 Sustainable Development Goals. The EU thus works closely both with the UN and in the UN.

As Federica Mogherini said at the UN Security Council in May last year: "The European way is also the United Nations' way. This explains why all our actions, all our initiatives are always taken in full coordination and partnership with the UN. We believe in the UN, because we believe in the same principles, in the same values, and our communities are built upon the same fundamental ideals".

As well as political support for the UN, the EU and its Member States are the single largest financial contributor to the UN system. The level of the contributions of the 28 EU Member States amounts to 30.38% of the UN regular budget and 33.17% of the UN peacekeeping budgets. In addition, the EU and its Member States also provide about half of all the voluntary contributions to UN funds and programmes.