Statement of the G-77 and China during the UNIDO IDB 33rd session, 25-27
June 2007, delivered by H.E. Ambassador Sayed G. Elamin, PR of Sudan
On behalf of the Group of 77 and China, I would like to congratulate you on
your election as President of the current Industrial Development Board session.
The Group is confident that you will steer the IDB with great skill. I also
take this opportunity to congratulate other members of the Bureau on their election
and would also like to thank your predecessor His Excellency Ambassador Soltanieh,
Permanent Representative of the Islamic Republic of Iran, for his commendable
leadership of the previous IDB sessions.
The Group will be making comments on Agenda items 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10,
11 and 13 in the course of discussions on these items. I would restrict my intervention
to comment on item 3 and 9 for this opening statement.
Agenda Item 3: Annual Report of the Director-General for 2006
The Group takes note of document IDB/33/2-PBC 23/2.
As regards the Technical Cooperation Management, the Group takes note of
the establishment of the Programme Approval Committee (PAC) that became operational
in April 2006 and has the task to facilitate a more consistent and harmonized
approach for the approval of TC programmes and projects prepared on the basis
of the Guidelines on Technical Cooperation Programmes and Projects. In this
matter, the Group emphasises that during 2006, the overall rate of approval
for programme and project documents stands at 79 per cent. From 207 programme
and project documents, 164 were approved.
The Group also takes note of the important activities of the Quality Advisory
Group, that will contribute particularly with regard to the design of programme
and project documents, implementation modalities of programmes and projects
and the incorporation of mechanisms of evaluation and monitoring.
The Group also highlights the issue of an update of the Guidelines, which
in accordance with the Report, will provide extensive guidance on the management
of TC programmes and projects while assigning clear responsibilities, authority
and accountability throughout all stages of the TC project cycle.
Since TC programmes are the core of the Organization, the Group will continue
supporting any improvement to facilitate the better coordination and easy approval
of projects, obviating bureaucracy and within the existing resources.
As regards Funds mobilization, the Group highlight that in 2006 the response
of the main donors has been positive to the three thematic priorities. Therefore
the thematic area of environment and energy attracted the largest share: US$60.9
million. Trade capacity building attracted US$27.4 million and poverty reduction,
including most of the activities related to human security coordination, US$13,6
million. Funding mobilized for Integrated programmes and Country Service framework,
amounted to US$21.2 million.
In the environmental field, funding from the Multilateral Fund for the Montreal
Protocol amounted to US$34.7 million and approvals under the Global Environment
Facility to US$15.2 million.
The Group will be following with attention the developments of the mechanisms
regarding the National Implementation Plans that could lead to new funding in
The G-77 and China welcomes that UNIDO has worked on a sharper focus of
its services, enhancing its technical capabilities and making its support services
and administration more cost-effective.
As regards the field representation the Group takes note with attention
of the measures taken by UNIDO to reinforce its field presence, upgrading the
technical capacities of field offices, and to fully staffed UNIDO Desks and
other representations in the Country offices. The Group supports UNIDO's regional
priorities and activities to reduce intra-regional differences.
The Group would like to encourage Member States to make voluntary contributions
to continue to meet growing demands for its services.
With regard to the United Nations reform, the contributions of UNIDO have
been very significant, and the Group will follow with attention the initiative
of One United Nations Country Programme Initiative as far as it could respond
efficiently to the needs of the Member States.
Thank you Mr. Chairman.
Agenda Item 9: Implementation of the medium-term programme framework, 2006-2009,
(a) South-South Cooperation
The Group takes note of the documents IDB.33/2 and IDB. 33/17 on South-South
cooperation in the implementation of the medium-term programme framework 2006-2009.
The Group would like to commend UNIDO for setting up the first UNIDO Centre
for South-South Industrial Cooperation in India in January 2007 and is confident
that a similar one will be opened in China soon. The Group expects that these
Centers would utilize the lessons learned in the region, which has enjoyed rapid
economic growth over the past decades, and replicate success stories throughout
the developing world.
The Group takes note with encouragement that initial discussions are underway
with the Governments of Brazil, Egypt, Indonesia, Iran, Morocco and South Africa
for establishing similar South-South centers in the near future. In the meantime,
the Group welcomes the initiatives taken by UNIDO and Governments of other Member
States in exploring ways to further promote South-South cooperation for industrial
The Group appreciates UNIDO's efforts in carrying out a comprehensive study
on South-South cooperation for industrial development and believes that it forms
an important part of a global South-South study.
The Group believes that, in line with the guidance provided by its policy-making
organs and United Nations mandates, UNIDO will continue to consolidate and sharpen
its activities to promote South-South cooperation, focusing on LDCs, in the
(b) Regional programme for Latin America and the Caribbean
The Group of 77 and China, would like to refer to the last part of the document
IDB.33/17 concerning developments for consolidating the Regional Programme for
Latin America and the Caribbean, approved during the 11th GC, Resolution 1.
The Group welcomes once again the important conclusions and recommendations
of the Expert Group Meeting held in Vienna last November, as we have already
said during the last IDB.
The Group would like to remind that during that Expert Group Meeting, consensus
on the convenience to constitute a Permanent Consultative Mechanism was reached,
as well, a preliminary proposal for the establishment of a Bank of Knowledge
In this context, the Group recognizes the effort of the Secretariat to articulate
and develop a Regional Programme for Latin America and the Caribbean. However,
the Regional Programme should have a strategic perspective, and it does not
consist in the sum of present activities in the area. In this context we would
like to have a complete proposal as soon as is possible.
The Group considers as well, that this document should include important
matters that have been conducted by several missions in the recently months,
in different countries, such as Guatemala, Nicaragua and Trinidad and Tobago.
This information will be very useful, therefore we urge the office in charge
to include such activities in this report.
Concerning the Draft Programme and Budget 2008-2009, the Group considers
that the Regional Programme for Latin America and Caribbean should be reflected
in a more coherent and integrated manner.
Thank you, Mr. President.
(c) UNIDO access to the Global Environment Facility
Given the increasingly important connection between development and the
protection of global environment, the Group of 77 and China believes that Global
Environment Facility (GEF) has a significant role to play in financially supporting
technical Cooperation in developing countries.
In this regard, having reviewed document IDB.33/17, the Group highly appreciates
that UNIDO will have direct access to the funds of the GEF in areas of comparative
advantage. The Group welcomes the decision adopted on December 2006 by the GEF
council which is a positive response to the concerns expressed many times by
the Group and recently on 8-9 June 2006 at the occasion of "The Fortieth
Meeting of the Chairmen/Coordinators of the Group of 77" in Vienna, relating
to the continued difficulties that specialized agencies have to obtain direct
access to the GEF funds.
Bearing in mind that GEF executing agencies will focus their involvement
in GEF project activities within their respective comparative advantages, which
will be defined during the consultations and the GEF Council Meeting (11-15
June 2007), the Group of 77 and China urges the Secretariat to keep it informed
about the result of these ongoing consultations.
Thank you Mr. President,
Agenda Item 4: Report of the Programme and Budget Committee
The Group of 77 and China have taken note of the 23rd PBC, which was held
during 2-4 May 2007. The Group would like to express its gratitude to H.E. Ambassador
Rudolf Schaller, Permanent Representative of Switzerland for taking on the important
task of the Chairmanship of the 23rd PBC.
The Group of 77 and China has participated actively and constructively in
the work of the twenty-third session of the Programme and Budget Committee and
therefore it associated itself with the conclusions reached and contained in
Having said that, the Group, also feels the necessity to make the few following
The Group finds that the External Auditor's report contains several issues
of great importance, in particular, points relating to the Status of implementation
of recommendations, Results based-management and Governance matters, including
the Office of Internal Oversight Services and the Implementation of International
Public Sector Accounting Standards. In this respect, we are paying due attention
to the recommendations in the report and we will be following the process of
On the issue of the Financial Situation, the Group notes with satisfaction
that the rate of collection of assessed contributions for 2006 is 93.7 per cent,
the highest collection rate recorded at UNIDO and takes note that the technical
cooperation delivery, recorded another impressive performance during the year
with an amount of 113.6 million expenditure, which represents an increase of
14.8 million or 15% over the first year of the previous biennium 2004-2005.
The Group supports the UN system-wide cooperation and UNIDO's active participation
in the discussion on the implementation of the IPSAS, including Project Steering
Committee, Task Force and Vienna Focus Group. The Group encourages the Secretariat
to continue its efforts to allocate resources for IPSAS in a more cost-effective
way through training and developing its internal expertise capacity.
The Group takes note of the decision of GEF to allow UNIDO direct access
to its funds and the Economic Partnership Agreements of the EU expected to result
in greater funds availability for UNIDO. The Group encourages the Secretariat
to continue its efforts to approach development partners to mobilize financial
resources for other priority areas namely poverty reduction through productive
activities, trade capacity-building and South-South cooperation.
On the issue of an External Auditor for UNIDO, which was also not decided
upon at the 23rd session of the Programme and Budget Committee (PBC), the Group
of 77 and China wishes to reiterate its support for the candidate of Pakistan,
Mr. Muhammad Yunis Khan, for the post of External Auditor.
Thank you Mr. President.
Agenda Item 5: Programme and Budgets, 2008-2009
The Group takes note of document IDB.33/7, and the proposed decision on
the programme and budgets, 2008-2009.
The Group would like to thank and support the commendable efforts undertaken
by the Chairman of the open-ended consultations, as well as the Secretariat
for endeavouring to reach a consensus-based agreement regarding the Budget for
On different occasions, the Group of 77 and China has already reiterated
its views expressed and highlighted in its letter to the Director-General of
UNIDO on 5 June 2007.
The Group stresses the need to consider and respond appropriately to the
Organization's needs to perform its increasing responsibilities. In this context,
the Group believes that it is necessary to assure that adequate resources are
available for the Organization, to be able to face raising challenges and demands
for technical cooperation activities.
The Group understands the views and concerns of Member States and their
national policies, however, it should be underlined that in any debate on budgetary
issues one should not only consider the financial aspects, but also the political
implication of such decisions. The Group therefore appeals to Member States
to continue strongly supporting UNIDO, and not inhibit the Organization's growth
and importance to developing countries.
In the spirit of compromise, accepts the consensus-based agreement on the
budget 2008-2009, as contained in document IDB.33/7 and the proposed decision
on the programme and budgets, 2008-2009. In this context, the Group stands against
the trend of applying ZNG budget in the future and the decision should not be
taken as a negative precedent for the Organization.
The Group reaffirms that it has no intention to micromanage the Organization
and would like to express its trust to the Secretariat in identifying areas
for possible savings, without affecting technical cooperation delivery.
The Group wishes that this agreement accepted by all Member States would
permit the management to continue its excellent performance.
Thank you Mr. President.
Agenda Item 6: United Nations system-wide coherence
The Group of 77 and China takes note of document IDB.33/2, the Annual Report
of UNIDO 2006, which contains information on promoting United Nations reform
and enhancing field level impact.
The Group appreciates UNIDO for actively supporting the United Nations reform
agenda and promoting coherent action in the field as well as its efforts to
enhance the Organization's contribution to the improvements in delivery by the
United Nations system as a whole.
The Group wishes to commend UNIDO's approach to closely following and actively
contributing to the debate on UN reform and system-wide coherence and urges
the Organization to continue its involvement. The Group concurs with the view
of UNIDO expressed in the note entitled United Nations system integration with
specialization, in which outlines the elements of a model for the effective
system-wide coherence. In particular, the Group is of the view that UNDP and
the Resident Coordinators should maintain impartiality to ensure system-wide
coherence and coordination.
With regard to the "Delivering as one" concept of one leader, one programme,
one budget, and, where appropriate, one office at a country level, the Group is
concerned about the integration of technical cooperation programme for industrial
development into and resources allocation to the "One Country Programme".
The Group, therefore, urges UNIDO to actively get involved in the 8 "One
UN" country pilots in order to test the application of this principle and
to keep Member States informed of problems arising in implementing the "One
UN" Country Programme concept.
Thank you, Mr. President,
Agenda Item 7: UNIDO's cooperation with international partner organizations,
particularly FAO, ILO and UNEP
The Group takes note of the documents IDB.33/2 and IDB.33/20.
The Group of 77 and China welcomes the efforts that the Organization has
made in order to develop closer links with other agencies, complementing the
efforts and taking advance of the knowledge of each other.
In this regard, the Group takes note that UNIDO has signed a memorandum
of understanding with the Food and Agriculture Organization, focusing on TC
projects that rely on the complementary activities of the two organizations,
which are agro-based industrial processing and commercially competitive biofuel.
The Youth Employment initiative launched by UNIDO at the Director-General's
Ministerial Breakfast Roundtable of the ECOSOC will also be followed with interest
by the Group, and other initiatives adopted for UNIDO together with the World
Trade Organization, the International Atomic Energy Agency, and the United Nations
Environment Programme in the framework of the UNEP-UNIDO network of National
Cleaner Production Centres under the Clean Development Mechanism of the Kyoto
The Group understand that interagency cooperation will increase synergies
through partnerships, and a knowledge based Organization as UNIDO could contribute
significantly, providing the expertise in the three thematic priorities.
The Group of 77 and China, also welcomes the partnerships established for
UNIDO with financial institutions, with regards to cooperation in the field
of investment promotion activities, technology transfers and institutional capacity
Thank you, Mr. President.
Agenda Item 8: Implementation of the Cooperation Agreement with UNDP
The Group of 77 and China carefully examined both documents IDB.33/16 "Implementation
of the Cooperation Agreement with UNDP" and IDB.33/2 "Annual Report
2006" especially Chapter 2, (F) related this item of the agenda.
The Group welcomes the establishment of the joint UNIDO/UNDP task force
meeting and takes note of the conclusions of the first meeting held in Vienna
on 20 April 2007.
The Group of 77 and China supports the efforts undertaken so far by the
Director-General in the implementation of the recommendations contained in decision
Nevertheless, the Group would like to emphasize that the extension of UNIDO
DESK network should not be done on the basis of the closure of some of the existing
UNIDO Country Offices. Efforts must be undertaken to ensure UNIDO's field presence
and should contribute mainly to the increase of technical cooperation delivery.
The Group reiterates the importance of strengthening the capacity of the
13 UNIDO Desks that have been created in the context of the Agreement and that
UNIDO's ability to deliver on its core competencies should not be sacrificed
by stretching its resources beyond its means.
The Group also likes to emphasize that it is important, in this process,
to strengthen the capacity of the Regional Bureau to the needs of effectiveness
and efficiency in the execution of the programs and projects in their covered
The Group believes that other parallel arrangements should be pursued by
UNIDO for the expansion of field representation and added visibility.
Finally, the Group invites the Secretariat to continue reporting on the
progresses of the implementation of the Cooperation Agreement and to consult
with Member States on a regular basis.
Thank you, Mr. President.
Agenda Item 10: Activities of the Joint Inspection Unit
The Group of 77 and China takes note of document IDB.33/15 on the Activities
of the Joint Inspection Unit (JIU). The Group considers some of the JIU reports
and notes enlisted in the said document to be of great importance to UNIDO e.g.,
those on result based budgeting and result based management besides the two
on Building Management Services and Goodwill Ambassadors.
As regards JIU's report on Common Services in Vienna: Building Management
Services, the Group of 77 and China appreciates that various action to improve
cooperation and collaboration had already been taken by the Secretariat at the
time of issuance of the report.
In view of JIU's recommendations on particular scrutiny by the Member States
of the growing costs of the Building Management Services and adoption of ways
to improve transparency and accountability, the Group urges the Secretariat
to undertake recommended measures and keep Member States updated on the progress.
In JIU's report entitled Oversight Lacunae in the United Nations System,
the Group of 77 and China is not convinced of the need for establishment of
an independent external "oversight board" as is could result in duplication
of mechanisms. Also this recommendation of the JIU does not fit in well with
its other recommendation on consolidation of different functions in the same
However, as regards JIU's recommendation on a fixed-term appointment of external
auditors and the head of internal oversight functions, the Group considers the
fixed tenure for audit and oversight functions to be one of the factors leading
to independent views. Keeping in view that a fixed-term is being practiced for
the external auditor while it was implemented some time back for the Comptroller
General in UNIDO, the Group would encourage the Director General to explore
the possibilities of reverting to the same practice.
The Group considers Secretariat's comments on the JIU note entitled Goodwill
Ambassadors in the United Nations System to be of general nature. The Group
would like to be informed on the line of observations of the JIU and reiterate
that the appointment is Honorary Goodwill Ambassadors.
Thank you, Mr. President.
Agenda Item 11: Personnel matters
The Group of 77 and China takes note of document IDB.33/18.
The Group appreciates the progress of the human resource policy reforms
instituted by the Director General since he assumed office. The Group commends
the Director General for his efforts in improving staff morale and professional
advancement in the Organization through various initiatives, including, inter
alia, open dialogues, lectures and learning programmes, leadership development,
and staff awards. The Group of 77 and China is confident that such human resource
programs will impact positively on the overall performance of the Organization.
In this regard, the Group would like to be regularly informed about the outcome
of these programs and policy reforms.
On the matter of field presence, the Group of 77 and China appreciates the
efforts of the Secretariat to fill up the vacancies in a number of States. The
Group agrees with the Secretariat on the important role of the field support
staff in delivering efficient programme support, and recognizes that UNIDO's
field presence is crucial in the effective delivery of technical cooperation
programmes. In this regard, the Group encourages the Secretariat to continue
its efforts in filling up vacant field posts, especially in those areas where
UNIDO has existing field units but without any staff.
On field mobility policy and assessment of candidates for various posts,
the Group urges the Secretariat to maintain the principle of transparency in
the implementation of policies, and reiterates the need to further improve equitable
geographical distribution and gender balance.
Agenda Item 13: Number and duration of sessions
The Group of 77 and China takes note of document IDB.33/11.
The Group is in agreement with the idea of introducing efficiencies and
economies in the conduct of sessions of the Programme and Budget Committee and
the Industrial Development Board and believes that other options, than eliminating
or shortening the sessions, should be explored.
In that connection, the Group believes that the current arrangements as
far as the number and duration of the IDB and PBC are concerned, should be maintained.
Thank you Mr. President.