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Statement to the 5th committee: financing of UNFICYP item 133: financing of UNMIK

Date of Speech : 16-03-2005

Place : New York

Speaker : Karl van den Bossche

Policy area : General Affairs and External Relations

Mr. Chairman,

I have the honour to speak on behalf of the European Union. The Acceding Countries Bulgaria and Romania, the Candidate Countries Turkey and Croatia*, the EFTA country Iceland, member of the European Economic Area, align themselves with this declaration.

We are now looking into the Peacekeeping Operations, more specifically the revised budgets for 2004-2005 for UNFICYP and UNMIK. Both missions have been existing for a long time, and will continue to be reflected in the may-overview of all PKOs. However, it seems that some urgent adaptations were necessary in order to assure the good maintenance of these missions and the well-being of the staff. The EU is ready to engage constructively in discussions on the matter, but wishes to note two following remarks:

1. On UNFICYP, changing cost parameters and the relocation of military personnel had a significant impact on the original cost estimates. These events counterbalanced and outweighed the savings that came from the downsizing of the mission - although the security reasons seem paramount. While the first series of impacts is relatively automatic, the latter isn't and will have some additional financial consequences for the next budget cycle. We agree therefore with the ACABQ in encouraging UNFICYP to absorb these cost overruns.

2. On UNMIK, we recall the ACABQ's comments in doc. A/58/759/Add.5, where the hope was expressed for more savings under operational costs. We indeed agree that all efforts should be made to absorb the increase of USD 386,000 due to air transport. A leading principle must be that unbudgeted costs that are related to travel of staff, maintenance of facilities and infrastructure and acquisition of vehicles, communications and other electronic data processing equipment should be absorbed. The performance report of UNMIK for the period 2004-2005 will be a test in this regard.

Thank you, Mr. Chairman.

*Croatia continues to be part of the Stabilisation and Association Process

This page was last modified on : 16-03-2005

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