Mr. Co- Chair,

I have the honour to speak on behalf of the Group of 77 and China on the general principles guiding the mandate review process and to also comment on issues within that process related to the promotion of sustained growth and sustainable development, as well as the development of Africa.

The Group of 77 and China shares the consensus that the process of review of mandates should be inclusive of the entire membership of the United Nations. The Group believes that all the Organs of the United Nations must carry out their review of mandates in a manner that is open, transparent and inclusive, showing due regard for the political sensitivities of mandates.

It should also be recalled that it is within the purview of the General Assembly, as the most representative body in the United Nations, to provide guidance on the strengthening of ECOSOC and the other bodies. Furthermore, the review of cross cutting mandates between the principal organs must be undertaken by the General Assembly.

Mr Co-Chair

The Group of 77 and China wishes to reiterate that the review of mandates must be aimed at strengthening the United Nations in order to ensure that the United Nations becomes better equipped to deliver on the mandates. As you indicated in your opening statement on 25 April 2006, Mr Co-Chair, mandate review is not a cost-cutting exercise, its purpose is rather to strengthen and update the United Nations programmes of work. Of primary importance therefore, in the review of mandates will be to assess the current status of implementation of mandates and to analyse the reasons as to why some mandates have not been fully implemented. This information will be critical for Member States, before any decisions are taken.

Therefore, the challenge of addressing the gap between mandates and resources needs to be prioritised. The Secretariat should identify the areas where there are gaps between resources and current mandates and identify the relevant principal Organ or subsidiary body responsible for those mandates. This will also help Member States develop recommendations on the allocation of resources.

The Group reaffirms that the process of review of mandates is an exercise by States, but we also remain cognizant of the role played by the Secretariat in facilitating our work by providing us with the information necessary to carry out the exercise. Consequently, the Group believes that the Secretariat should be provided with the requisite resources to better enable our exercise of reviewing mandates and requests the Secretariat to indicate the resources it requires to enhance program evaluation capacity at the United Nations.

Mr. Co-Chair,

On development the Group wishes to reaffirm the important role played by the General Assembly and ECOSOC on issues related to the three pillars of sustainable development. The Group welcomes the role that ECOSOC can play in post-conflict situations, in particular in the light of the newly established Peace-building Commission, but is of the view that the respective roles of ECOSOC and the Peace-building Commission should be carefully assigned in order to allow the concerned countries to benefit from the support of both.

The mandate given to ECOSOC for the promotion of the integrated and coordinated implementation of and follow-up to the outcomes of the major United Nations conferences and summits in the economic, social and related fields, in accordance with GA Resolution 57/270B should be preserved and strengthened. Therefore, t he role of ECOSOC in providing overall oversight, coordination and guidance for the UN operational activities should be reinforced, as well as its role as the central mechanism for system-wide coordination.

At the same time, it is important to recognize the need to preserve the mandates of both the General Assembly and ECOSOC, including those of their different subsidiary bodies, with regards to development. In most cases those mandates are intended to complement each other, providing different visions and solutions to development issues from the specific perspective of each organ. Therefore, to reiterate we should strive to assess how those mandates have been fulfilled and if not, why they have not been implemented.

The proposals in the SG report with regards to reporting requirements will have to be closely examined. We would like to emphasize that the capacity of Member States to obtain the necessary information for decision-making should not at all be affected.

Mr. Co-Chair,

Africa is the only continent not on course to achieve the Millennium Development Goals by 2015. This underscores the necessity of supporting African institutions, such as the African Union, and of concentrating on Africa’s own strategy for development, namely: the New Partnership for Africa’s Development (NEPAD).

The Group believes that the United Nations should continue to formulate and streamline its initiatives and mandates with a view to supporting NEPAD and the priorities identified by the African Union.

In conclusion, Mr. Co-Chair, the G77 and China wishes to reiterate its assurance to you that it is approaching this process positively, pragmatically and with an open mind in an effort to strengthen the United Nations.

Thank you.