Plenary: Item 8. Strategic management, budgetary and administrative questions

Chair: Before we start, I would like to give the opportunity to the Conference Management Service to play a short video.

Conference Management Service: Our interpreters are key to facilitate this multicultural space. They’re your voice in the other languages. The visualised messages are a reminder of the need to slow down your delivery, increase the pauses and be mindful of intonation.

(Video)

Chair: Now that we have successfully completed the Ministerial Segment, it is my pleasure to welcome you to the regular 62nd Session. We will continue considering agenda item 2. Last week, we adopted the agenda for this session. I would like to provide now some additional information on other matters. The agenda is structured in two distinct operational and normative segments. At the 53rd Session in 2010, we agreed that the agenda item on administrative issues would be considered at the beginning of the Session. Under Agenda Item 9 (Implementation of drug control treaties, as agreed by the Bureau and the Commission during the intersessional, we will consider some items under Item 8, changes in the scope of substances). The CND is expected to take action regarding precursors. 5 fentanyls and 5 synthetic cannabinoids to be discussed too. The Commission is also expected to formalise the decision agreed during the intersessional meeting to postpone the voting on the recommendations of WHO regarding the critical review of cannabis and cannabis related substances which were transmitted after the 3-month period established in our regulations; so that States have more time to consider the recommendations. The CoW will be suspended during agenda item 9.A. 8 proposed resolutions will be considered by the CoW. Delegations sponsoring resolutions will continue to hold informals to facilitate consensus.

Chair: This is an item to consider issues related to policy guidance to the office. We recall that at the reconvened 61st Session, the commission adopted a resolution on the implementation of the budget for the biennium 2018-19 for the drug programme. We considered the report of the Executive Director on the implementation of the programme. And the report on gender balance. (…) Also for consideration is a note on the standing intergovernmental working group on improving the government and financial situation of CND.

Division for Management (UNODC): It is a time of transformation for the UN as a whole, with wide ranging reforms coming into place this year. We strive for a more nimble, efficient and effective organisation; as said by the UN Sec Gen. We have established a department of management, strategy, policy and compliance; and of operational support. The idea is to provide guidance and coordination. 2019 also saw the implementation of a new accountability framework. UNODC is fully engaged with the implementation of the UN Sec Gen reforms. We want to continue delivering to your expectations. The Executive Director of UNODC is reviewing the new delegation framework together with senior managers. The outcome will be taken into account when formulating the 2020-21 budget. We are cognisant of the need to engage with Member States at the early stages of the budget process. We look forward to discuss during our FINGOV meetings. New programmatic and budgetary reporting guidelines to be considered by the relevant departments in Spring. For the current biennium, we appreciate continued donor confidence. We are expecting a 17% increase in our budget. The successful delivery and extension of UMOJA will be key in relation to planning and managing capacities. UNODC looks forward to the implementation of the global service delivery model. The General Assembly is invited to make a decision on this. Field offices will benefit from country team operational platforms and support platforms. UNODC has initiated a one-off search capacity to reinforce our presence in the field in key thematic areas (counterterrorism and migration). The 1% coordination levy isn’t a contribution to UNODC’s direct costs; but the resident coordination system. UNODC has been engaging with other agencies for the provision of local administrative services, we look forward to take advantage of this service and expanding it to use in local administrative services.

(d) Staff composition of the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime and other related matters

Division for Management (UNODC): Executive Director continues to promote gender parity and balanced geographical representation between UNODC states, and encourage Member States (MS) to propose diverse candidates. We have an action plan put in place to action and measure efforts to reach gender representation targets for 2019-2021. In line with Sec Gen Report we encourage applications from candidates from underrepresented MS.

Chair: This item has many sub items that are all interrelated – we assume delegations will respond to them all together, please specify which subgroup you’re talking about at the beginning of the intervention.

Co-chair, open-ended intergovernmental working group on improving the governance and financial situation of the UNODC: We held 3 informal meetings between October – November 2018 as well as a number of other meetings. We have a draft plan for 2020. A large number of delegations attended the meetings, thank you.

Formal meeting was held in Jan 2019. Referral to wide range of system reforms and impact on the office. Also reported on gender and geographic representation. Mainstreaming gender perspective in work of UNODC, and update on UNODC work plans and publications. Report provided to MS on actions in place to prevent sexual harassment. More than 10 years after establishment of work group, we are still working to enhance transparency. We hope MS continue to participate.

Chile: Welcome adoption of res on budget as well as ED report on this matter. We believe further efforts could be made the attain more geographical representation, in particular from Latin America, more could be done on gender representation in high level UNODC positions. Has been a decrease in general-purpose income – call on MS to share more for general funds. Ask Secretariat to continue providing disaggregated data and hiring strategies.

China: Taken note of the UNODC’s efforts. Regional office played a major role. Given the illicit drug situation in our region remains grim, China proposes the UNODC continue providing technical, human, financial, and policy support. Request that the UNODC improve the timeliness of its research reports to serve as a reference for countries. China will continue to support the UNODC’s work and international drug control system. Expect the UNODC to play a more active role, including in UNGASS follow up implementation.

Korea: Persistent, new, and evolving challenges. The UNODC has played a valuable role. Emphasize two points regarding the UNODC’s activities. One, appreciation for efforts made to enhance cost efficiency and transparency. Two, commend continued work to improve geographical and gender representation. Confident that these will be achieved in the near future. Ready to provide capable staff members to ensure geographical and gender balance.

USA: The report highlights the important activities UNODC provides – a highly valuable service, we provided approximately 70mil in funding. Including on budgetary matters this is an extremely important, we support the un gen sec, we encourage UNODC future reforms should include further support for those objectives.

UNODC field presence is a vital component of the work and we encourage a broader distribution of UNODC funding. The US supports efforts to ensure workplace protections in trying to achieve 50/50 gender parity

Jamaica: Thank you chairman, covering items A, B and C, the UNODC is poised to take advantage of this opportunity. We are concerned that the financial position of the UNODC remains fragile – adequate funds will be indispensable to the organisation. We welcome the launch of the gender equality strategy. we are grateful for continued support at national and regional levels. We look forward to technical consultations this year. My delegation remains disappointed and we encourage bolstering number of staff from underrepresented countries at the UNODC.

Brazil: We value the work of the intergovernmental working group on improving the government and financial situation of the UNODC in an effort to increase the transparency. Member States have sent a strong mandate to improve the geographical representation in UNDOC staff and to strengthen efforts to achieve gender balance. MS have requested UNODC conduct an assessment of the implementation of the recruitment policies and practices and a comprehensive action plan to increase equitable representation. Chair, during the meeting of FINGOV we were glad to hear the Secretariat has started working on comprehensive action plan to be presented to MS in 2019. We were also pleased to learn that the office is working to implement the strategy of the Sec Gen on multilingual and diverse work at the UN. We look forward to hear about the indicator of geographical representation. Given the concerning numbers presented by the organisation on geographical representation, we trust the task will be carried with the necessary urgency. 57% of the professionals come from one regional group lonely. Only 5% were citizens of GRULAC. A significant and immediate change is paramount. We take this opportunity to request that the office shares updates and comprehensive data on the composition of staff of geographical and gender. Including measures to improve the situation, and a description of internal and external recruitment processes and measures to improve transparency. We look forward to receiving more information on the implementation of the mandates on diversity. We are certain that working towards increased representation and gender balance will improve the organisation’s capacity to deliver and the recognition and reputation.

 

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