STATEMENT ON BEHALF OF THE GROUP OF 77 AND CHINA BY MR. WALEED ALSHAHARI, PERMANENT MISSION OF THE REPUBLIC OF YEMEN TO THE UNITED NATIONS, ON AGENDA ITEM 128: REVIEW OF THE EFFICIENCY OF THE ADMINISTRATIVE AND FINANCIAL FUNCTIONING OF THE UNITED NATIONS - PROPOSED PROGRAMME BUDGET OUTLINE FOR THE BIENNIUM 2012-2013, IN THE FIFTH COMMITTEE DURING THE MAIN PART OF THE 65TH SESSION OF THE GENERAL ASSEMBLY (New York, 15 December 2010)
1. I have the honour to speak on behalf of the Group of 77 and China on agenda item 128, in particular on the proposed programme budget outline for the biennium 2012-2013.
2. The Group of 77 and China wishes to thank the Controller, Mr. Jun Yamazaki, and the Chair of the Advisory Committee on Administrative and Budgetary Questions, Ms. Susan Mc Lurg for their introduction of the respective reports of the Secretary General and the Advisory Committee.
3. The Group regrets that the report of ACABQ on this matter was not issued with sufficient time, in order to give the Committee the opportunity for a proper consideration of this issue to facilitate the intergovernmental process. We recall resolution 63/266 of the GA which required the budget outline to be submitted by 15 November of the off-budget year. While recognizing the revised programme planning and budgeting process authorized in resolution 58/269, it is still critical for this important document to be issued in a timely manner.
4. The Group of 77 and China takes note of the submission of the proposed programme outline for the biennium 2012-2013 (A/65/560), which in accordance with the provisions of Annex I of the General Assembly resolution 41/213, provides Member States with a preliminary indication of the resources required in the coming biennium and, once adopted, will form the basis of the budget preparations.
5. The Group notes the Secretary-General foresees a total net projected growth in program resources of 1.4 percent, or $56.9 million. However, once account is taken of the full estimated biennial provision for the SPMs, ($1,240.2) the total preliminary estimate of $5,456.1 million would represent an increase of $297.1 Million or 5.8 percent over the existing provisions for the biennium 2010-2011. On overall resource levels, the Group notes as in previous budgets, compared to the current provisions, activities related to security and human rights are the only areas in the proposed outline where significant growth is being foreseen with provisions for special political missions showing a significant increase.
6. We wish to stress that the estimates are indicative in nature and level of the proposed programme budget for the biennium 2012 -2013 may be higher or lower than the preliminary estimates before us today. We note the proposed indicative resource change of 0.7 per cent under both Part IV and V of the programme budget. The Group reiterates the great importance of having adequate resources in order for the secretariat to implement the Development Agenda as mandated by the General Assembly. We would be interested to know, how much of the resource change in these areas is accounted for by technical delayed impact adjustments.
7. The Group carefully reviewed the detailed information in the proposed budget outline, and will request supplementary information as required in informal discussions. We note and value the tables on delayed impact and one-time resources by part of the budget. However, the provision for programme changes in 2012-2013 is not similarly detailed by part of the budget with a table. This information would be useful in reviewing the proposed budget outline.
8. On the estimated increases of $81.0 million proposed for programmatic changes during the biennium 2012-2013, we would like to receive further information on this during the informal consultations.
9. A close study of the information provided in Annex II shows that much is still to be determined, and there are considerable gaps regarding detailed requirements and the related amounts. This emphasizes that careful attention should be given to setting the budget outline at an appropriate and realistic level, while leaving the contingency fund to address such implications which may arise at a later stage.
10. Turning to the level of the contingency fund, we agree with the proposal of the Secretary General to maintain the level of the Contingency Fund at 0.75% of the preliminary estimates for the biennium 2012-2013.
11. The Group would like to emphasize that, in accordance, with the charter, the General Assembly is the only body authorized to consider and approve the budget of the United Nations. The Group would also like to stress that, in accordance with the Charter, the staff of the Organization should be appointed by the Secretary General under regulations established by the General Assembly. The Group would be guided in its approach to the elements under this agenda item by articles 17, 97, 100 and 101 of the charter, Rule 153 of the Rules and Procedure of the General Assembly, and rule 5.9 of the Programme Planning, the Programme Aspects of the Budget, the Monitoring of Implementation and the Methods of Evaluation (PPBME).
12. We also would like to stress that the role of the fifth Committee in budgetary and administrative matters should be respected. The Group, therefore, deems it necessary to remind other Main Committees of the General Assembly to desist from using the phrase "within existing resources" in their resolutions, as to do so would be in contradiction of rule 153 of the rules of procedure, as well as numerous General Assembly resolutions that have reaffirmed the role of the Fifth Committee. We trust that this will be conveyed in writing to other Main Committees as this Committee has done in the past.
13. The Group would like to assure you of our willingness to engage constructively in the deliberations on this agenda item.
I thank you, Mr. Chairman