General Assembly General Assembly

Explanation of Position

by

Ambassador Tanmaya Lal,

Deputy Permanent Representative

 

Adoption of UNDS Reform Resolution

UN General Assembly

31 May 2018

 

 

Mr. President,

 

  • Today, we are adopting a landmark resolution that has the potential to significantly enhance the efficiency and efficacy of the UN System’s development outreach efforts. 

 

  • As a developing country and a founding member of the Group of 77, India has long engaged in pursuing the development agenda at the UN, including through south-south cooperation. 

 

  • We, therefore, have a keen interest in ensuring the success of these efforts.

 

  • The UNDS reform is the first of the three sets of reform proposals put forward by the Secretary General in his first year in office last year. 

 

  • We thank the Secretary General for putting forward the reform proposals.  We also thank the Deputy Secretary General and her team for their tireless efforts to help build consensus on the draft resolution.

 

Mr. President,

 

  • On the one hand, the UNDS reform proposals flow from our collective desire to strengthen the UN System’s capability to improve its delivery, especially in the context of the much more comprehensive understanding of the global challenges, as reflected in the 2030 Agenda.

 

  • On the other hand, these proposals have come at a time when the UN is staring at a scenario of severe resource constraints.   

 

  • This stark contradiction in the requirement of resources vis-à-vis the potential availability of resources has been a major fault-line in the debate leading up to today.

 

  • From the start, we had extended strong support to the UNSG’s proposals to reform the UN Development System.

 

  • His proposals to delegate authority and increase accountability within the UN system and in line with national priorities were intended to be supported by much enhanced and non-earmarked funding.

 

  • However, the draft resolution had to be modified substantially despite enjoying strong support from an overwhelming majority of the membership of this Assembly.

 

  • The modalities of funding envisaged in the current text are very different in their nature to the SG’s original proposal.

 

  • We are also conscious that the volume of funding and the time of its availability remain uncertain at this stage.

 

  • The proposed enhancement of cost sharing by various agencies; levies on earmarked funding; and voluntary contribution, all are likely to involve considerable uncertainty and possible shortfalls.

 

  • In this context, we welcome the assurances made on record by the co-facilitators in respect of the Technical note that had earlier been provided by the Secretariat and was forwarded by the co-facilitators vide their letter dated 30 April 2018, to serve as a basis for the amended modalities of funding envisaged in the resolution to back the changes in the UNDS structure.

 

  • We have also noted the explanation provided a short while ago by the Under Secretary General, DGACM (Department for General Assembly and Conference Management).

 

  • In view of the above assurances and explanations, we support the draft resolution before us.

 

  • We look forward to the Implementation Report to be presented by the UN Secretary General in this regard.  We also note that a comprehensive review of the UN Development System reform will be presented during the 75th session of the UNGA.

 

  • We remain committed to constructive engagement with the Secretariat and all our partners to see these reforms move ahead.

 

  • Sustainable development remains the key to collective peace and prosperity in a globalized world.

 

  • We hope that the entire membership and the Secretariat will work together to make the UN Development System stronger to assist developing countries in achieving the entire range of SDGs.

 

Thank you.