Statement by Deputy Permanent Representative Dmitry Chumakov during the second part of the resumed 75th session of the General Assembly Fifth Committee under agenda item “Organization of Workˮ
The agenda of the second part of the resumed session of the Fifth Committee of the GA is focused on the financing of UN peacekeeping operations (PKOs). Taking into account the tight schedule of consultations and the importance of a timely conclusion of the session, we assume that the documentation will be submitted to the Committee – as soon as possible – no later than the established deadlines.
We understand that the COVID-19 pandemic seriously complicates negotiations of Member States. However, we hope that the extraordinary conditions of the discussion will not affect the quality of our decisions.
The Russian delegation attaches great importance to the administrative and budgetary aspects of peacekeeping, accurate budget planning, rational use of resources and effective management of the PKOs. We regret to note the absence of a GA resolution on “cross-cuttingˮ issues of peacekeeping under the agenda item “Administrative and budgetary aspects of the financing of PKOˮ for four consecutive years. At the same time, we welcome with appreciation that the GA approved a number of instructions addressed to the Secretary-General in resolutions on the financing of each PKO. We are convinced that the formulations agreed in the summer of 2020 could form the basis of the GA resolution on “cross-cuttingˮ issues of peacekeeping this year. A pragmatic approach to the resolution would allow the Committee to reach a consensus. In addition, we also expect that, after a break of many years, Member States will finally be able to take a decision on agenda item 154 “Closed PKOsˮ.
The Secretary-General proposes Member States to allocate resources for PKOs and their supporting structures for the period from 1 July 2021 to 30 June 2022 at the level of $ 6.5 billion. The amount requested is approximately $ 350 million, or 4.6 percent, lower than the total appropriations for the previous fiscal year. Despite the gradual drawdown of PKOs in accordance with the UN Security Council resolutions adopted in recent years, we see a steady increase in expenditures under the support account for PKOs every year, which is puzzling. For example, this year, the Secretary General’s proposal suggests its increase from $ 355.7 to 361.7 million, i.e. by $ 6 million, or 1.7 percent.
We believe that the search for additional savings should be aimed at improving the efficiency and accountability of the Secretariat. We suggest that we focus on optimizing first of all requirements of the support account for PKOs, and then – of “fieldˮ missions. It is of great importance to ensure that cuts in the projects of peacekeeping budgets contribute to the effectiveness of the PKOs without undermining the implementation of the mandates granted by the UN Security Council. We emphasize that, when making decisions on the approval of appropriations for each PKO, all special aspects of its activities should be taken into account.
We hope that the Committee will work out a solution regarding the seconded military and police personnel, which will take into account interests of all Member States and will not contradict the UN Staff Regulations and Rules at the same time.
In conclusion, we would like to confirm our readiness to participate constructively in the discussion of the entire range of issues during the second part of the resumed 75th session of the GA Fifth Committee.