|Statement by Ambassador Wang Min, Deputy Permanent Representative of China to the United Nations, at the Fifth Committee of the 68th Session of the UN General Assembly on Agenda Item 134: the Proposed Program Budget for the Biennium 2014-2015|
The Chinese Delegation thanks His Excellency Mr. Ashe, President of the General Assembly, for attending this meeting. We thank Secretary General Ban Ki-moon for introducing the Proposed Program Budget for the Biennium 2014-2015. Our thanks also go to Mr. Carlos Ruiz Massieu, Chairman of the ACABQ, for his introduction to the report of the Committee. My Delegation associates itself with the statement made by Fiji on behalf of the G-77 and China.
I would like to state China's positions on the questions of the budget level, resource allocation, and resource management of the United Nations.
First, the Chinese Delegation believes that to establish a reasonable and appropriate budget level for the UN, it is necessary to follow the guiding principle of matching actual needs with available resources.
On the one hand, the resource level should adequately meet the need of implementing mandated activities and programs. The UN is an irreplaceable platform for all member states to work to maintain peace, seek common development, increase cooperation, and achieve a win-win outcome. With high expectations for the UN, the member states have kept giving new mandates to the Organization. To fully perform its duties and live up to the trust of its membership, the UN must have sustained and stable resource support. It is the shared responsibility of all member states to provide the UN with solid and reliable financial support.
On the other hand, in setting the budget of the UN, we must proceed on the basis of actual capability. The Secretariat should strictly enforce budget discipline, effectively improve RBB management, and follow the principle of maximum economy in formulating the budget; member states should objectively and rationally analyze the actual resource needs of the UN and establish a reasonable and appropriate budget level. The budgetary assessment must take into full consideration the financial capacity of developing countries. Methods currently used to calculate rates of assessment, especially low per-capita income adjustments, embody the principle of the capacity to pay and should continue to be upheld.
We have noticed that before recosting, the proposed resource level for the biennium 2014-2015 is 5.4044 billion USD, which exceeds the 5.3927 billion USD in the GA approved budget outline by 11.7 million USD, but it is 159.2 million US dollars, or 2.9 percent, less than the 5.5636 billion USD of 2012-2013 biennium resources calculated at the revised rates. After recosting, the proposed resources for the biennium 2014-2015 total 5.5625 billion USD, which is still lower than the 2012-2013 biennium resources calculated at the revised rates by 1.1 million USD. That, of course, does not include such items as the Strategic Heritage Plan. The Chinese Delegation hopes that member states will eventually establish a reasonable and appropriate budget level through serious consideration and thorough consultations.
Second, with regard to resource allocations, the Chinese Delegation believes that resources should be allocated in an equitable manner to the priority areas designated by the member states. Particular attention should be given to the field of development to ensure the successful implementation of all program activities. My Delegation notes with appreciation that the Secretary General, in formulating the proposed program budget for 2014-2015, has made it a top consideration the alignment of the Organization's activities with the priorities established in GA Resolution 67/248.
At the current crucial stage of the international development cooperation where new efforts are launched on the basis of past achievements, the United Nations is called upon to continue to play the leading role. During the biennium of 2014-2015, the UN will undertake onerous tasks of continuing to implement the MDGs, formulating the post-2015 development agenda, and implementing the outcome of Rio+20. Necessary resources must be allocated to the development pillar to eliminate the "resource deficit"; every effort must be made to attain the development goals and ensure pragmatic and effective outcomes of the relevant follow-up processes, thereby addressing the "implementation deficit". The United Nations should also pay great attention to the work of the regional economic commissions and provide them with strong support in terms of finance and human resources.
Third, in the area of resource management and utilization, the Secretariat should work hard to improve management and enhance the efficiency of resource utilization, thereby maximizing effective output.
It is the shared expectation of the whole UN membership that the Secretariat would practice economy, eliminate wastefulness, and cherish and use wisely every penny contributed by the member states. It should be acknowledged that the Secretary General is determined to remain committed to improving the efficiency and effectiveness of the Secretariat in fulfilling its tasks and has promised to keep looking for better working methods and adopt effective measures to strengthen and adjust the UN so that it can better carry out its tasks in the future. My Delegation hopes that the Secretariat, through implementing various management reform measures, will truly achieve the objective of cutting expenses and improving efficiency, and use the resources thus saved in development-related projects and activities.
The proposed program budget for the biennium 2014-2015 is an important item on the agenda of the Fifth Committee during the current session. Only by taking a flexible, pragmatic and cooperative approach and engaging in frank and efficient consultations on an equal footing, will the member states be able to reach consensus at an early date. The Chinese Delegation will participate constructively in the consideration of this agenda item.
Thank you, Mr. Chairman.