I have the honour to speak on behalf of the European Union.
The Candidate Countries Turkey, Croatia* and the former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia*, the Countries of the Stabilisation and Association Process and potential candidates Albania, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Montenegro, Serbia, and the EFTA country Liechtenstein, member of the European Economic Area, as well as Ukraine and Armenia align themselves with this declaration.
At the outset, I wish to welcome back the Chairman and all the other members of the Bureau, as well as the Committee secretariat, to this Second Resumed Part of the 62nd Session of the Fifth Committee. The European Union is looking forward to working closely with you and all delegations in order to reach our shared goal of achieving the best possible outcome of our deliberations. We stand ready to engage in a constructive dialogue with all delegations.
Let me first express our deep concern over the fact that some very important reports of the Secretary-General and therefore of the Advisory Committee on Administrative and Budgetary Questions, some with significant budgetary implications, will be again coming to the Committee very late, even in the final days of the session. The European Union has already many times stressed that timely availability of reports is essential if this Committee is to perform its functions effectively. In this regard we commend you Mr. Chairman for the letter you sent to the Secretariat high officials and to the ACABQ chairperson in which you described the Committee’s concerns accurately.
The May session is mainly devoted to the financing of United Nations peacekeeping operations which is a priority area for the European Union.
The European Union is deeply committed to the primary role of the United Nations maintaining international peace and security and its core function of peacekeeping. There are large numbers of troops, civilian police and other personnel from the European Union Member States in the United Nations peacekeeping missions. The European Union also, collectively, contributes to a very large percentage of the peacekeeping budgets. We have actively supported the strengthening of the UN peacekeeping activity and will continue to do what is necessary to ensure that it is effective and serve the needs of maintaining international peace and security. At the same time that political commitment must go hand in hand with budgetary discipline and sound financial management. We will examine the budgets of the peacekeeping missions with a view to providing them with adequate resources to implement their mandates. Together with the discussion on individual peacekeeping budgets, we will work on the peacekeeping support account, cross-cutting issues and the budget for United Nations Logistics Base. Depending on the timely availability of the reports the European Union is also ready to discuss other issues that can come before us during this session, such as Administration of Justice and ICT-ERP.
We have highly important issues to deal with in the coming four weeks. With such a full agenda, the goodwill and flexibility of all delegations will be crucial to the success of our negotiations. We are confident that with hard work, constructive dialogue and harmonious cooperation we will be able to conclude our deliberations in a timely manner, without having to resort to extra working hours, and with satisfactory results.
I thank you, Mr. Chairman.
* Croatia and the former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia continue to be part of the Stabilisation and Association Process.