STATEMENT BY THE GROUP OF 77 AND CHINA DURING THE FORTY-THIRD
SESSION OF WORKING GROUP A, 27-29 MAY 2013, DELIVERED BY BY MR YOUSIF A.T. EL
KORDOFANI ON BEHALF OF HE AMBASSADOR MAHMOUD HASSAN ELAMIN, PERMANENT REPRESENTATIVE
OF THE REPUBLIC OF THE SUDAN
1. The Group of 77 and China is pleased to see you, Ambassador Enksaikhan, chairing the Forty-Third Session of Working Group A. The Group takes this opportunity to renew to you the assurances of its full support and cooperation.
2. The Group thanks the Executive Secretary, Ambassador Tibor Tóth, for his opening remarks and takes note of the reports on the verification related activities, the Annual Report for 2012 and the non-verification related activities of the Organization.
3. On agenda item 3 on the review of Advisory Group (AG) recommendations, the Group of 77 and China takes note of the report on the deliberations conducted by the Advisory Group in Part I and Part II of its Fortieth Session and thanks the Advisory Group for the work it accomplished during that time.
4. The Group endorses the AG's recommendation that States Signatories should be provided with clearer separation of figures related to the CIF-I and the CIF-S, along with the total sustainment and operation related expenditures and post-certification activities (PCA) costs of each facility.
5. The Group takes note that as stated in the 2014 Programme and Budget Proposals: Initial Draft, the budget is slightly above zero real growth.
6. The Group of 77 and China welcomes the important work conducted by the PTS on building technical capacity in developing countries. Since capacity building activities consume less than 10% of the IDC budget, the Group is of the view that any proposed savings should not harm those activities. The Group of 77 and China is convinced that all efforts pursued in the realms of capacity building and training will doubtlessly enhance the capability of all States to participate fully in the verification system, by helping NDCs to fulfil their tasks and station operators to sustain the IMS network. Hence, the Group of 77 and China cannot support the suggested 21% cut in the budget for capacity building and training activities. Furthermore, the Group recalls that these are regular activities of the Secretariat and, as such, should be funded through the Regular Budget.
7. Regarding the PCA contracts, the Group takes note of the AG's Fortieth Session Part II report, in paragraph 18, which refers to the difference of costs among the contracts. The Group understands that for some stations, because of the conditions where they are located, the operational costs are very high. However, the Group is of the view that the PCA contracts should be reviewed in order to decrease the costs of operation. The Group of 77 and China appeal to host States and to the PTS to work together in order to correct this imbalance among PCA contracts.
8. The Group shares the AG's concerns on the proposed 361.7% increase for Management and Coordination costs under Major Programme 1, as highlighted in the report, and looks forward to clarification on this matter.
9. With regard to a comprehensive update on the implementation of an International Public Sector Accounting Standards (IPSAS)-compliant Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP) system, the Group would like to seek an extensive presentation of the possible options available, in order for State Signatories to decide on how best to proceed with this at the Preparatory Commission in June.
10. On agenda item 7, human resources in the Provisional Technical Secretariat, the Group notes that there is a slight increase in the representation of women in the Professional category, and the Group further encourages the Secretariat to continue its efforts in promoting and increasing the employment of women.
11. The Group would also like to reiterate the importance of a balanced geographical representation within the PTS. In relation to this, the Group noted, as stated in the AG's report, that there is imbalance of geographical representatives in the recruitment of consultants.
12. With these remarks, the Group reiterates its pledge to work in both a constructive and committed way. May these deliberations be fruitful and result in substantive progress on the important issues coming to our consideration during the current session.