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Statements in International Organisations


United Nations - General Assembly: Item 130. Improving the financial situation of the United Nations (New York)

Statement on behalf of the European Union by Ms Mateja Bizilj, Counsellor, Permanent Mission of Slovenia to the United Nations

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Mr Chairman

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

The Candidate Countries Turkey, Croatia* and the former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia*, the Countries of the Stabilisation and Association Process and potential candidates Albania, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Montenegro, Serbia, as well as Ukraine and Armenia align themselves with this declaration.

At the outset, let me thank the Controller Mr. Warren Sach for the briefing on the financial situation of the United Nations. The information provided gives us a useful insight in the financial health of the United Nations. It also provides us with a clear indication of the willingness of the Member States to fulfill their responsibility for the financial well-being of the Organization. The European Union reiterates its already known position in this regard that it is the responsibility of each individual Member State to pay its assessed contributions in full, on time and without conditions.


Mr Chairman

The recent presentation on the current financial situation has shown us some signs of improvement in some areas but there are still reasons for concern.

The position of the regular budget for 2007 has not improved compared with the situation in 2006. We note that as of 31 December 2007 one more Member State had fully paid their regular budget assessments, 140 compared to 139 in 2006. However the share of unpaid assessments has slightly increased. This leaves 52 Member States owing a total of 428 million USD, with over 95 per cent being owed by two Member States.

Turning to the peacekeeping budgets: Peacekeeping has indeed a different financial period than the other accounts, assessments are issued separately for each operation and they are issued for different periods throughout the year.

We notice that the financial situation of the peacekeeping operations at the end of the year 2007 was better than the year before. The share of unpaid assessments decreased substantially, from 54.8 per cent in 2006 to 39.2 per cent in 2007.

The financial position of the peacekeeping budgets on 7 May 2008 shows further improvement. At the same time, we wish to recall that there is still an important amount of 2.3 billion USD outstanding. We appeal to all Member States to continue the positive trend and pay their assessed contributions in order to enable the implementation of the peacekeeping operations effectively. Further, the timely and unconditional payments will allow timely reimbursements to troop contributing countries on time.

In this context the EU wishes to reiterate that the balance of any funds on the accounts of closed peacekeeping operations should be returned to the Member States and that continued retention of funds is not acceptable.


Mr Chairman

The financial situation of the international tribunals is improving and we appreciate that 67 Member States have made payments amounting to 198 million USD so far for the year 2008.

Turning to theCapital Master Plan, we would like to stress the importance of this project. A lot of time and efforts of the Fifth Committee were spent to take a decision on the project and we expect from all Member States to pay their assessed contributions on time to enable the implementation of the project according to approved schedule.

As indicated in the presentation, the amount outstanding is 150 million USD. In order to ensure timely implementation of the project, all Member States should pay their assessments in full and on time.


Mr Chairman

To conclude, the European Union believes that the Organization can only perform its ever increasing and challenging tasks when Member States accept their responsibility to pay their contributions in full, on time and without conditions. A significant level of outstanding assessments reminds us to take our obligations to the Organization seriously. At the same time the European Union expects the Secretariat to use the resources in the most accountable, efficient and effective manner.

I thank you, Mr Chairman.


* Croatia and the former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia continue to be part of the Stabilisation and Association Process.


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Date: 21.05.2008