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I have the honour to speak on behalf of the European Union and its Member States.
The Candidate Countries Turkey, North Macedonia*, Montenegro*, Serbia* and Albania*, the country of the Stabilisation and Association Process and potential candidate Bosnia and Herzegovina, as well as Ukraine, the Republic of Moldova and Georgia, align themselves with this statement.
I would like to thank the Co-Chairs for convening this third thematic debate of the Ad Hoc Working Group on the selection and appointment of the Secretary-General and other executive heads. Similarly, I would like to express our appreciation for your important work and to reiterate the EU and its Member States' continued willingness to engage in the most constructive manner possible.
In recent years we have seen significant progress in regard to the selection and appointment of senior officials. Provisions contained in the landmark resolution 69/321 and those in resolution 70/305 guided the selection and appointment of the ninth Secretary General in one of the most transparent and inclusive appointment processes to date. We would also like to recall the need for equal and fair distribution in terms of the gender and geographical balance of the executive heads of the United Nations system and the Senior Management Group of the Organization.
The EU and its Member States share the views expressed in resolution 72/313, which re- emphasizes the need for the process of selection of the Secretary-General to be transparent and inclusive of all Member States, bearing in mind the provisions of Article 97 of the Charter.
At the same time, regarding the timing of this important matter, and being consistent with our standing EU-position, we hope that the specific element of SG selection and appointment can be discussed in more detail at a later stage, since we believe it is premature to focus on this matter during this session.
To conclude, I would like to thank you, Co-Chairs, once again for convening today's meeting and to say that we look forward to the next and final thematic debate on the strengthening of the institutional memory of the Office of the PGA.
I thank you.
* North Macedonia, Montenegro, Serbia and Albania continue to be part of the Stabilisation and Association Process.