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Statement by Ms. YU Hong, Representative of the Chinese Delegation to the Fifth Committee of the 62nd General Assembly, on Agenda Item 119 "Improve the Financial Situation of the UN"
New York, 15 November 2007

2007/11/15

 

Mr. Chairman,

At the outset, the Chinese delegation wishes to thank Mr. Warren Sach, Controller of the UN for his presentation of the financial situation of the UN in 2007. The Chinese delegation would also like to associate itself with the statement made by Pakistan on behalf of the G77 and China. I would now make the following comments and suggestions on the financial situation of the UN.

Mr. Chairman:

We have noticed with concern that in 2007 the financial situation of the UN has deteriorated as compared to the same period of last year and various unpaid contributions have all increased. According to the presentation given by the controller, as of October 31, a total of 126 member states paid in full their assessed contributions, 92 member states paid in full the assessments for the two international tribunals and 23 member states paid in full the assessments for peacekeeping operations. The unpaid assessments for the regular budget, the two international tribunals, peacekeeping budget and the Capital Master Plan amount to US$836,000,000, $64,000,000, $3.492 billion and $150,000,000 respectively. The above figures have shown that most member states paid their assessed contributions in time and in full. However, some member states have yet to meet in earnest their financial obligations under the UN Charter.

We believe that sound finance constitutes the foundation for the UN to perform its functions as the most important international organization in today's world. There can be no strengthening of the UN's role in various international affairs if it is deprived of this foundation. All member states should meet in earnest their financial obligations and pay various assessments on time. Otherwise, the balance sheet of the UN would inevitably get distorted, its budget a piece of paper without any binding power and its various tasks lacking sufficient financial resources to back them up. We have noticed that some member states, in particular some developing countries, in spite of many practical difficulties, have done their best to meet their financial obligations, which is commendable. All other member states should follow their example and pay all the assessments on time, in full and without conditions so as to improve through practical action the financial situation of the UN and support its various activities.

Mr. Chairman:

In recent years, the UN's functions have been continuously strengthened and the mandate of peacekeeping operations has steadily expanded, which have led to the sharp increase of all kinds of expenditure. The rapid increase of the total expenditures of the UN has put a considerable financial burden on its member states, in particular the developing countries. We believe that the UN's regular budget should be distributed in a balanced manner to all the priority areas including development. The UN budget should be prepared within the limits of available means. Due consideration must be given to the ability of its member states to pay, especially that of the developing countries. At the same time, the Secretariat should strengthen administrative and budgetary management, clarify financial disciplines, make overall plans and make good use of existing resources and make effective use of every penny paid by its member states. Special attention should be paid to the prevention of increasing staff and resources in the name of reform. This will only lead to the overstaffing of entities but not the improvement of efficiency.

Mr. Chairman:

As the biggest developing country, in spite of a low per capita income, China has made its own contribution by practical actions to a solid financial foundation of the UN. In 2007, both assessed contributions and peacekeeping assessments for China went up significantly, and total assessments for China amounted to $270,000,000, a 42% increase as compared to 2006, which constituted quite a financial burden. Still, China overcame various difficulties and paid in time its total assessed contributions for 2007 in the amount of $54,375,989, its assessments for the two international tribunals in the amount of $8,432,306 and $10,357,328, which is its Capital Master Plan assessment. The Chinese government has also provided in advance the equipment worth of over $50 million to the peacekeeping troops sent to Sudan and Liberia. At present, the Chinese government is actively making financial arrangements and will pay before the end of 2007 the bulk of its outstanding peacekeeping assessments.

Mr. Chairman:

In today's world, the United Nations is entrusted with major responsibilities and the international community has increasingly raised its expectations for the role of the UN. We believe that all member states should display political good will and effectively meet their financial obligations under the Charter so as to ensure that the UN perform its various tasks even more effectively.

Thank you, Mr. Chairman.

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