Press Releases

    GA/AB/3719
    28 December 2005

    Fifth Committee Recommends $3.79 Billion 2006-2007 Budget; Provision Places Limit on First-Year Spending Authority

    Initial "Tranche" of 2006 Expenditures Limited to $950 Million, with Remaining Funds Subject to Later Request by Secretary-General

    NEW YORK, 23 December (UN Headquarters) -- The Fifth Committee (Administrative and Budgetary), following extended negotiations today, recommended a 2006-2007 budget of $3.79 billion adding a proviso "as an exceptional measure" that would limit the first portion of the Secretary-General's expenditures for 2006 to $950 million.

    In effect, by a series of budget drafts that were approved without a vote as the Committee concluded the main part of its sixtieth session today, the amount approved today would cover the needs of the United Nations for approximately half of 2006.  The remaining funds may be requested by the Secretary-General at a later date.

    Having considered the Secretary-General's report on the implementation of the outcome of the September Summit, the Committee also approved a text, by the terms of which the Assembly would note the resources that were needed to provide for the establishment of an ethics office and decide to establish an Independent Audit Advisory Committee to provide assistance in the discharge of the Assembly's oversight responsibilities.  In this connection, the Secretary-General would be requested to propose the Committee's terms of reference and report to the second resumed session on related resource requirements.

    To address the Organization's cash-flow situation, the Committee also recommended that the Assembly establish a Working Capital Fund, which should be set at $100 million for the biennium 2006-2007.  The Fund would be used to finance budgetary appropriations pending the receipt of contributions from Member States, the commitments relating to unforeseen and extraordinary expenses, the revolving fund to finance miscellaneous self-liquidating purchases and activities not exceeding $200,000, the sums that may be necessary to enable the Tax Equalization Fund to meet current commitments pending the accumulation of credits; and -- with prior concurrence of the Advisory Committee -- certain payments of advance insurance premiums.

    Yet another draft approved today sets the procedures for covering the Organization's unforeseen and extraordinary expenses in the coming biennium, authorizing the Secretary-General to enter into certain commitments in that regard, with prior concurrence of the Advisory Committee on Administrative and Budgetary Questions (ACABQ) and in accordance with Financial Regulations and Rules of the United Nations.

    On the financing of the International Criminal Tribunal for Rwanda, the Committee recommended that the court's $255.91 budget for 2004-2005 be adjusted by some $3.31 million for a total amount of $252.60 million.  For 2006-2007, it recommended an appropriation of some $269.76 million gross.

    For the International Criminal Tribunal for the Former Yugoslavia, it recommended reducing the appropriations for 2004-2005 by some $21.01 million, for a total amount of $308.30 million gross.  The Tribunal's budget for the next biennium, as recommended by the Committee, would amount to $305.14 million gross.

    Recognizing the urgent need to continue the implementation of the design and pre-construction phase of the Capital Master Plan, the Committee also recommended that the Assembly provide an interim budget for the project, without prejudice to the decision at a later stage regarding the strategy for the implementation of the plan.  As a minimum amount that would be required for the Plan's implementation during the first four months of 2006, the Assembly would decide to convert $8.2 million of the existing commitment authority into an appropriation with assessment for 2006.  Such an interim measure would give the Assembly time to fully examine all the options available.  The Assembly would decide to revert, as a matter of priority, to the issue next March.

    Also today, the Committee recommended that the Assembly take note of the second performance report for 2004-2005, according to which the final estimates for the biennium amount to about $3.7 billion for expenditure sections and $470 million for income sections.  The document reflects actual experience in the implementation of the budget and takes into account unforeseen and extraordinary expenses, as well as changes in inflation, exchange rates and the cost of living.

    By the draft on the scale for setting Member States' contributions to the budget, the Assembly would act on several Member States' requests for exemption from sanctions under Article 19 of the Charter and urge States applying for such exemptions to submit as much supporting information as possible, doing so in advance of the set deadline.  [According to Article 19, a Member State falling behind in the payment of its dues by an amount equal to its assessments for the two most recent years loses its right to vote in the Assembly, it is determined that non-payment is a consequence of factors beyond its control.]

    By the same draft, the Assembly would endorse the recommendations of the Committee on Contributions concerning multi-year payment plans and encourage States with arrears to consider submitting them.  It would urge all Member States to pay their assessed contributions in full, on time and without conditions.  As for the methodology to be used in the preparation of the scale of assessments for the period 2007-2009, the Assembly would decide to consider it further at the first part of its resumed session.

    Also approved today was the text on human resources management, by the terms of which the Assembly would note that key human resources management targets are not being met by departments and insist on the highest standards of efficiency, competence and integrity as the paramount consideration in the employment of staff, with due regard for the principle of equitable geographical distribution.  It would also ask for urgent steps to address the fact that, due to the projected retirements, many Member States may become unrepresented and underrepresented in 2005-2009.  In that connection, it would reiterate its request that analysis of the level of underrepresentation be included in the report on the composition of the Secretariat and ask for an assessment on recruitment to P-2 and P-3 posts, including the effect of the national competitive examinations.

    By other action, Committee recommended that the Assembly:

    -- Approve $225.68 million for the Department of Safety and Security;

    -- Approve the budget for the Joint Inspection Unit in the amount of $10.51 million;

    -- Approve the Organization's biennial calendar of conferences and meetings for 2006-2007;

    -- Provide $26.73 million for the International Trade Centre UNCTAD/WTO for 2006-2007;

    -- Approve some $91.72 million to cover the administrative expenses of the United Nations Joint Staff Pension Fund in 2006-2007, chargeable directly to the Fund; an additional amount of $1.1 million would be approved above the level of resources set out in the 2006-2007 proposed budget as the United Nations share of those administrative costs;

    -- Endorse the proposals for subventions for the United Nations Institutes for Disarmament Research (UNIDIR) and for Training and Research (UNITAR);

    -- Approve the charge of $100 million for the 26 missions dealt with in the Secretary-General's report on special political missions, good offices and other initiatives authorized by the General Assembly and/or the Security Council;

    -- Request the Secretary-General to organize, effective 1 January 2006, guided tours at the United Nations Office in Nairobi;

    -- Approve a $16.21 million budget for the International Civil Service Commission and take a decision on a new scale of assessment for professional and higher categories of staff, as recommended by that body; and

    -- Address the work of the Economic and Social Commission for Asia and the Pacific (ESCAP) and the Economic Commission for Europe.

    And finally, the Committee decided to take note of several reports and defer a number of items for future consideration, including those related to the measures to strengthen accountability at the United Nations; a unified security management system; programme planning; United Nations common system; several reports on human resources management; and activities of the Office of Internal Oversight Services.

    Action on Texts

    The Committee first took up a draft resolution on the OIOS report on the inspection of programme and administrative management of the subregional offices of the Economic Commission for Africa (ECA) (document A/C.5/60/L.17), by the terms of which the Assembly would urge full and expeditious implementation of the OIOS recommendations and request the Secretary-General to support the efforts of the ECA and its subregional offices in that regard.  In particular, it would urge appropriate integration of the subregional offices into the strategy for the Economic Commission to ensure increased coordination and the most effective management of resources and implementation of mandates.

    Further by the text, the Secretary-General would be requested to ensure that the information and communications technology capacity and strategy of the ECA and its subregional offices are fully integrated with the information and communications technology strategy of the Organization and that it is used to its full capacity to disseminate information by electronic means.  He would also be requested to intensify his efforts to fill vacancies in the subregional offices, inter alia, by recruiting staff with appropriate skills and expertise that match the development priorities of respective subregions.

    The Assembly would take note with concern of the finding that ECA's subregional offices have a restricted ability to act as the operational arm of the Commission throughout the countries of their respective subregions owing to the lack of adequate resources for core functions, insufficient level of support from the headquarters of the Commission and the lack of a clear understanding as to the role of the subregional offices.  In that connection, it would stress the important contribution that the ECA and its subregional offices are making towards supporting the efforts of the regional economic communities of Africa to implement the objectives of the New Partnership for Africa's Development (NEPAD), and recognize the need to strengthen the subregional offices.

    Also by the draft, the Secretary-General would be requested to develop separate subprogrammes for the subregional offices; enhance interaction between the regional advisers and ECA's subregional offices to ensure a closer link with subregional needs; and present to the sixty-first session of the General Assembly a comprehensive plan of action to strengthen the subregional offices, based on the recommendations of the Office of Internal Oversight Services (OIOS) , with timelines and clear lines of managerial accountability.  In the context of the action plan, the Assembly would state the need to ensure that adequate resources are provided to the Economic Commission for Africa and its subregional offices.

    Acting without a vote, the Committee approved the text.

    By the terms of a draft resolution on the pattern of conferences (document A/C.5/60/L.21) the Assembly would approve the draft biennial calendar of conferences and meetings of the United Nations for 2006-2007, authorizing the Committee on Conferences to make any adjustments that may become necessary as a result of actions and decisions of the Assembly.  It would further note with satisfaction the arrangements concerning Orthodox Good Friday and the official holidays of Eid al-Fitr and Eid al-Adha, requesting all intergovernmental bodies to observe those decisions when planning their meetings.

    The Assembly would decide to continue consideration of the item during the first part of its resumed session, including the Secretary-General's reports on the pattern of conferences and the reform of the Department for General Assembly and Conference Management.

    The text was then approved also without a vote.

    The Committee then had before it a four-part draft resolution on the scale of assessments for the apportionment of the expenses of the United Nations (document A/C.5/60/L.20).  According to first part of the draft the Assembly would urge all Member States requesting exemption under Article 19 of the Charter to submit as much information as possible in support of their requests and to consider submitting such information in advance of the deadline specified in resolution 54/237 C to enable the collation of any additional detailed information that may be necessary.  It would agree that the failure of the Central African Republic, Comoros, Georgia, Guinea-Bissau, Somalia and Tajikistan to pay the full minimum amount necessary to avoid the application of Article 19 of the Charter was due to conditions beyond their control and decide that those countries be permitted to vote in the Assembly until the end of its sixtieth session.

    Taking note of the information provided by the representatives of Liberia, the Niger and Sao Tome and Principe, the Assembly would conclude that the failure of those countries to pay the full minimum amount necessary to avoid the application of Article 19 was due to conditions beyond their control and invite them to submit appropriate information to the Committee on Contributions if similar circumstances prevail in the future.  It would decide also that Liberia, the Niger and Sao Tome and Principle should be permitted to vote in the Assembly until the end of its sixtieth session.

    By part B of the text, the Assembly would endorse the recommendations of the Committee on Contributions concerning multi-year payment plans and encourage Member States with arrears to consider submitting such a plan.  Taking note of the Secretary-General's report on multi-year payment plans, it would urge all Member States to pay their assessed contributions in full, on time and without imposing conditions.

    The Assembly would, by part C of the text, take note of the Committee on Contributions' recommendations on measures to encourage the payment of arrears and, by part D, decide to consider further at the first part of its resumed sixtieth session the methodology to be used in the preparation of the scale of assessments for the period 2007-2009.

    Acting again without a vote, the Committee approved the draft.

    The Committee then approved, also without a vote, a draft resolution (document A/C.5/60/L.5), by the terms of which the Assembly would take note of the report of the Secretary-General on the implementation of the recommendations of the Office of Internal Oversight Services on the management audit of the regional commissions.

    The Committee then took up a draft resolution on the second performance report for the biennium 2004-2005 on the International Criminal Tribunal for Rwanda (document A/C.5/60/L.15).  By its terms, the Assembly would take note of the second performance report and endorse the recommendations contained in the related report of the Advisory Committee on Administrative and Budgetary Questions (ACABQ).  It would resolve that, for 2004-2005, the amount of some $255.91 million gross (about $231.51 net) approved in its resolution 59/273 for the Rwanda Tribunal budget shall be adjusted by the amount of $3.31 million gross ($3.87 million net) for a total amount of $252.60 million gross ($227.63 million net).

    It also took up a draft resolution on the financing of the Rwanda Tribunal (document A/C.5/60/L.18), the Assembly would take note of the Secretary-General's reports on the financing for the Tribunal for 2006-2007, on staff retention and legacy issues and on the revised estimates arising from the effect of changes in exchange rates and inflation.  It would also endorse the ACABQ's recommendations in its related report.

    By further terms, the Assembly would decide to appropriate to the Special Account for the Tribunal a total amount of $269.76 million gross ($246.81 million net) for the 2006-2007.  It would decide also that the total assessment for 2006 under the Special Account would amount to $134.88 million gross, being half of the estimated appropriation for 2006-2007.  It would decide further to apportion the amount of $67.44 million gross ($61.70 million net) among Member States in accordance with the scale of assessment for the regular budget for 2006.  Some $67.44 million gross ($61.70 net) would be apportioned among Member States in accordance with the scale of assessments applicable to peacekeeping operations for 2006.

    Also by the text, the Assembly would decide that the provisions for the application of credits under the United Nations Financial Regulations shall be suspended in respect of the amount of $3.31 million gross ($3.87 million net), which otherwise would have to be surrendered pursuant to those provisions.

    The Assembly would, by other provisions of the text, welcome the Tribunal's continued efforts to assist the Government of Rwanda in strengthening its judiciary, and request the Tribunal to increase its capacity-building efforts for Rwanda's judiciary, including through recruitment, training and attachment programmes for Rwandan jurists, advocates and human rights practitioners, in view of the intention to transfer cases for prosecution to Rwanda.

    By further terms of the draft, the Assembly would reiterate the importance of carrying out an effective outreach programme within the Tribunal's overall mandate and its completion strategy, and request the Tribunal, in consultation with the Department of Public Information, to develop and implement outreach programmes that are proactive, using available resources optimally, and that contribute to the reconciliation process by developing an increased understanding of its work among Rwandans.

    The Committee then turned its attention to a report of the Secretary-General on the revised estimates:  effects of changes in rates of exchange and inflation on the proposed budgets of both the ICTR and the ICTY (document A/60/600) and the related report of the Advisory Committee (document A/60/7/Add.32).

    Taking into account the recommendations of the ACABQ on the matter (document A/60/7/Add.32), the recosting decreases the proposed programme budget for 2006-2007 from $3.85 billion to some $3.8 billion.  The estimates under the income sections are decreased by $41.5 million, to a total amount of about $427.36 million.

    The recosting described in the report of the Secretary-General is based on the initial budget proposals for the biennium 2006-2007 and the revised estimates to the proposed programme budget for the 2005 World Summit Outcome (resolution 60/1), amended in accordance with the recommendations of the Advisory Committee, using the data available as of December 2005.

    After recosting, the requirements for the two Tribunals for the biennium 2006-2007 as proposed by the Secretary-General would amount to $269.76 million for the International Criminal Tribunal for Rwanda (a decrease of $14.51 million), and $305.14 million for the International Tribunal for the Former Yugoslavia (a decrease of some $15.71 million).

    The Committee then decided to take note of the revised estimates:  effect of changes in rates of exchange and inflation on the proposed budgets of both the Rwanda Tribunal and the Yugoslav Tribunal for the biennium 2006-2007.

    Acting without a vote, the Committee approved draft resolutions A/C.5/60/L.15 and A/C.5/60/L.18.

    Next up was a draft resolution on the second performance report for the biennium 2004-2005 for the International Criminal Tribunal for the Former Yugoslavia (document A/C.5/60/L.16), by which the Assembly would endorse the conclusions and recommendations in the report of the ACABQ.  It would resolve that, for 2004-2005, the amount of $329.32 million gross ($298.44 million net) approved in its resolution 59/274 for the Yugoslav Tribunal budget shall be adjusted by the amount of $21.01 million gross ($22 million net) for a total amount of $308.30 million gross ($276.96 million net).

    The Committee then took up a draft on the financing of the Yugoslav Tribunal (document A/C.5/60/L.19), by which the Assembly would take note of the Secretary-General's report and endorse the recommendations of the Advisory Committee.  It would decide to appropriate to the Special Account for the Tribunal a total amount of $305.14 million gross for 2006-2007.  It would also decide that the total assessment for 2006 under the Special Account would amount to $152.57 million, being half of the estimated appropriation approved for 2006-2007.  The amount of $76.3 million gross would be apportioned among Member States in accordance with the scale of assessments applicable to the regular budget for 2006 and $76.3 million gross among Member States in accordance with the 2006 scale of assessments for peacekeeping operations.

    Also according to the text, the Assembly would decide further that the application of credits under the Organization's Financial Regulations shall be suspended in respect of the amount of $21.01 million gross which otherwise would have to be surrendered pursuant to those provisions.  It would encourage the Tribunal to continue its efforts to refer cases involving intermediate and lower-ranking accused to competent national jurisdictions in the former Yugoslavia pursuant to rule 11 bis of its Rules of Procedure and Evidence.

    Acting without a vote, the Committee then adopted draft resolutions A/C.5/60/L.16 and A/C.5/60/L.19).

    The Committee then approved a draft resolution on the budget for 2004-2005 (document A/C.5/60/L.14), by which the Assembly would take note of the second performance report for the ending biennium and a related ACABQ report.  According to the performance report, the final estimates for 2004-2005 amount to about $3.7 billion for expenditure sections and $470 million for income sections.

    Resolving that the amount of some $3.74 billion appropriated for the biennium should be decreased by some $81.97 million under expenditure sections, the Assembly would note that that amount is partially offset by the $257,200 for the implementation of last week's Fifth Committee decision to hold night and weekend meetings.

    The Committee next turned its attention to the Secretary-General's report on the revised estimates:  effects of changes in rates of exchange and inflation (document A/60/599) and the related report of the ACABQ (document A/60/7/Add.32).

    The Committee then decided to take note of the revised estimates:  effects of changes in exchange rates and inflation on the 2006-2007 proposed programme budget.

    By the terms of a 10-part draft resolution on programme budget implications relating to the proposed 2006-2007 budget (document A/C.5/60/L.22), the Committee would inform the Assembly of the estimates in connection with several texts before the plenary.

    In connection with the Third Committee's (Social, Humanitarian and Cultural) draft on the Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Discrimination against Women (document A/C.3/60/L.17) (Part A of the text), the Committee would inform the Assembly that the adoption of the draft resolution would involve the requirements of some $9.52 million to allow the Committee on the Elimination of Discrimination against Women to deal with its backlog, in accordance with the procedures for the use of the contingency fund.

    Part B of the draft contains a programme budget implications statement on draft resolution A/C.1/60/L.50/Rev.1 on transparency in armaments, by the terms of which the Assembly would request the Secretary-General, with the assistance of governmental experts to be convened in 2006, to prepare a report on the continuing operation of the United Nations Register of Conventional Arms and its further development, with a view to taking a decision at its sixty-first session.  By the text, the Fifth Committee would inform the Assembly that should it adopt the draft, additional requirements of up to $1.03 million would arise under the proposed budget, to be considered in accordance with the procedures for the use of the contingency fund.

    Part C contains a programme budget implications statement on draft resolution A/C.3/L.22/Rev.1 on the rights of the child, by the terms of which the Assembly would recommend that the Secretary-General extend the mandate of the Special Representative of the Secretary-General for Children and Armed Conflict for a further period of three years, and request the Special Representative to submit reports to the Assembly and the Commission on Human Rights.  By the text, the Committee would inform the Assembly that should it adopt the draft, additional requirements of up to $3.35 million would arise, to be considered in accordance with the procedures for the use of the contingency fund.

    Contained in Part D is a statement on future operation of the International Research and Training Institute for the Advancement of Women (INSTRAW) (draft resolution A/C.3/60/L.15/Rev.1).  By this text, the Assembly would decide to provide its full support to the current efforts to revitalize the Institute and to provide it with the requisite funds to enable it to carry out its core functions for 2006-2007.  The requirements to sustain INSTRAW, in the estimate of the Fifth Committee, would amount to up to $1.04 million, as an exceptional measure.  The Committee requests the Assembly to appropriate that amount against the contingency fund, to be used should there be a shortage of voluntary contributions for the functioning of the Institute in 2006 and to request the Secretary-General to report on the overall financial situation of INSTRAW during its sixty-first session.

    Part E relates to the situation of human rights in Myanmar (document A/C.3/60/L.53).  By the terms of this Third Committee draft, the Assembly would request the Secretary-General to continue to provide his good offices on the human rights situation with the Government and people of Myanmar and to offer technical assistance in that regard, as well as to provide the Secretary-General's Special Envoy and the Special Rapporteur of the Commission on Human Rights on the human rights situation in Myanmar to discharge their mandate fully.  An amount of up to $254,000 would be required to implement the mandates.  These requirements would be charged against the provision of $355.95 million proposed for special political missions.

    Contained in part F are programme budget implications of draft resolution A/60/L.34 on assistance to survivors of the 1994 genocide in Rwanda and its amendment A/60/L.35, by the terms of which the Assembly would request the Secretary-General to establish, within existing resources, a programme of outreach activities entitled "The Rwanda Genocide and the United Nations", as well as measures to mobilize civil society for Rwanda genocide victim remembrance and education, in order to help prevent future acts of genocide and to report to the General Assembly on the establishment of that programme within six months from the date of the adoption of the resolution.  The Fifth Committee informs the Assembly that should it adopt those drafts, additional resources in the amount of $196,200 would be required under section 27, Public information, of the proposed budget for 2006-2007.  Those appropriations would be considered in accordance with the procedures for the use of the contingency fund.

    The programme budget implications on draft resolution A/C.3/60/L.28 entitled "Ad Hoc Committee on a Comprehensive and Integral International Convention on the Protection and Promotion of the Rights and Dignities of Persons with Disabilities" is contained in Part G of the text.  By this text, the Assembly would decide that the Ad Hoc Committee should hold -- within existing resources -- prior to the Assembly's sixty-first session, two sessions in 2006, one of 15 working days, from 16 January to 3 February, to achieve a complete reading of the draft text of a convention prepared by the Chairman of the Committee, and one of 10 working days, from 7 to 18 August.  The Fifth Committee would inform the Assembly that the adoption of the draft would give rise to additional resources in the amount of $11,400 for conference costs, to be considered for appropriation, at a subsequent stage, in the context of the review of the consolidated statement of all statements of programme budget implications and revised estimates provided for in the procedures for the use of the contingency fund.  The estimate for $7,000 for support services should be absorbed.

    Contained in Part H is a programme budget implications statement on draft resolution A/C.2/60/L.62 on international migration and development.  Under the terms of the resolution, the Assembly would decide, among other things, that the High-Level Dialogue on International Migration and Development would be held in New York on 14 and 15 September 2006, and also that the High-Level Dialogue would discuss the overall theme of the multidimensional aspects of international migration and development, in order to identify appropriate ways and means to maximize its development benefits and minimize its negative impacts.  It would also decide that the High-Level Dialogue would consist of four plenary meetings and four round tables, within existing resources.

    By further provisions of the draft, the Assembly would request the Secretary-General, within existing resources, to prepare a comprehensive overview of studies and analyses on the multidimensional aspects of migration and development, including the effects of migration on economic and social development in developed and developing countries, and on the effects of the movements of highly skilled migrant workers and those with advanced education.

    The Fifth Committee would inform the Assembly that additional requirements of some $55,200 for the holding of four round tables should be absorbed from within the provisions of the budget for 2006-2007.

    Part I concerns the Third United Nations Conference on the Least Developed Countries:  high-level meeting on the midterm comprehensive global review of the implementation of the Programme of Action for the Least Developed Countries for the Decade 2001-2010.  In connection with this text, the Committee would inform the Assembly that should it decide to adopt the draft, it would not give rise to any additional requirements under the 2006-2007 budget.  Any additional resources that may be necessary for conference-servicing of the high-level meeting should be considered in the context of the review of the consolidated statement on the contingency fund.

    Part J deals with the programme budget implications of draft resolution A/60/L.43 on the 2006 follow-up meeting on the outcome of the Assembly's twenty-sixth special session on HIV/AIDS.  By the terms of the text, the Assembly would decide to undertake on 31 May and 1 June 2006 a comprehensive review of the progress achieved in realizing the targets set out in the Declaration of Commitment on HIV/AIDS, which was adopted in June 2001, and convene a high-level meeting on 2 June 2006 aimed at continuing the engagement of world leaders in a comprehensive global response to HIV/AIDS.  The Fifth Committee would inform the Assembly that should it adopt the draft resolution, there would be no additional appropriation required.

    The Committee approved the text, acting without a vote.

    The representative of Uganda expressed concern about the way the Office of the Special Representative on Children and Armed Conflict was run contrary to the initial merit at the time of its formation.  As the lead agency, the United Nations Children's Fund (UNICEF) was best suited to carrying out its mandate.  While he did not agree with the extension of the Office's mandate, as it was the wish of the majority of States to continue with funding of the Office, his delegation would not block consensus on the text, but would continue to keep the Office's performance under review.

    The Committee next took up the draft resolution on questions relating to the 2006-2007 programme budget (document A/C.5/60/L.25).  By its terms, the Assembly would note that consideration of the programme narratives contained in the revised estimates will follow consideration thereof by the Committee for Programme and Coordination no later than September 2006.  It would endorse -- subject to the provisions of the resolution and without establishing a precedent -- the ACABQ's recommendations concerning posts and non-post resources as contained in Chapter II of its report on the 2006-2007 proposed programme budget, and its resource recommendations in all the revised estimates, including the 2005 World Summit Outcome and in the Committee's report on the programme budget implication statements relating to decisions by the main committees.

    By further terms, the Assembly would decide that the staffing table for each year of the 2006-2007 biennium shall be set as detailed in Annex I to the resolution.  It would decide also to extend for 2006-2007 the experiment approved under paragraph 14 of Assembly resolution 58/270, and request the Secretary-General to report to the Assembly at its next session on the experiment's implementation.  The Assembly would request the Secretary-General to use the arrangements above to identify available posts to provide for the new post requests referred to in the ACABQ's report on the 2006-2007 proposed programme budget (document A/60/7), as well as in paragraph five of its report A/60/7/Add.1.

    The Assembly, by further terms, would decide to provide resources at the level sought by the Secretary-General in his statement of programme budget implications arising in respect of draft resolutions A/60/L.34 and L.35, relating to Rwanda outreach.  The Secretary-General would be requested to achieve further efficiencies of non-post resources and, therefore, decide to adjust non-post provisions by a pro-rata reduction of 1.75 per cent to be applied to all sections of the programme budget.

    Also by the text, the Assembly would decide that the Development Account will be recosted for the 2006-2007 biennium and, in this context, request the Secretary-General to pursue the relevant proposals in his report and to provide at the sixty-first session, recommendations on how additional resources in the region of $5 million could be added to the Development Account.

    Acting without a vote, the Committee approved the text.

    Also before the Committee was a consolidated statement of programme budget implications and revised estimates (document A/C.5/60/L.25), which presents information regarding potential charges to the contingency fund in connection with new mandates still awaiting decision by the Assembly.  Also presented in the report are relevant recommendations of the Advisory Committee.

    The Secretary-General reports that, after adjustments, which take into account the efforts to absorb the costs of the actions envisioned in the drafts, the consolidated amount of some $22.1 million would be within the approved $27.2 million level of the contingency fund.  Should the Fifth Committee recommend the appropriation of that amount, it should also request the Assembly to note that a balance of $5.1 million would remain in the contingency fund.

    The related report of the ACABQ (document A/60/7/Add.31) notes that, by the terms of General Assembly resolution 42/211, which regulates the use of the contingency fund, prudent use of the contingency fund requires that it should not be exhausted before the end of the period that it covers.  The Advisory Committee also notes that the consolidated statement submitted by the Secretary-General is based on the assumption that the Assembly will decide to make an exception to the application of the procedures for the use and operation of the contingency fund as regards the revised estimates relating to the 2005 Summit Outcome.  In the opinion of the ACABQ, the Secretary-General should have made reference to the possibility that the Assembly might decide to maintain the existing procedure.  In this connection, it recalls paragraph 9 of Annex I to resolution 41/213 and paragraphs 3 and 6 of resolution 42/211 concerning the need to provide indications of alternatives, should the amount in the contingency fund be insufficient to cover the total financial implications contained in the programme budget implications statements and revised estimates.  The Advisory Committee underscores the need for full implementation of these provisions.

    The CHAIRMAN then proposed that the Committee recommend to the Assembly to note that a balance of $4.966 million remained in the contingency fund.

    The Committee next took up its draft report (document A/C.5/60/L.28, Part I and Part II).  Part I of the text contains the narrative action taken by the Committee, while Part II contains the Committee's recommendations.

    The Committee then took action on draft resolution II entitled "Programme budget for the biennium 2006-2007" (document A/C.5/60/L.26).  Draft resolution II is divided into three parts.  Section A concerns budget appropriations for 2006-2007, Section B concerns the income estimates for the biennium 2006-2007, and Section C the financing of appropriations for the year 2006.

    By its terms, the Assembly, while determining that the budget for the biennium amounts to $3.79 billion and expected expenditure in the course of 2006 is about $1.9 billion, would authorize the Secretary-General, as an exceptional measure, to enter into expenditure of a first tranche, limited to $950 million.  In order to ensure the availability of resources for programme delivery, the Assembly would act in response to a request, at an appropriate time, from the Secretary-General for expenditure of the remaining funds.  The estimates of income for the biennium would total $427.35 million.

    Acting without a vote, the Committee then approved the text.

    Draft resolution III on special subjects relating to the proposed programme budget for 2006-2007 (document A/C.5/60/L.27) was then before the Committee.

    By the terms of Part I of the text, International Trade Centre UNCTAD/WTO, the Assembly would decide to approve $26.73 million (at the exchange rate of SwF 1.27 to $1) for the 2006-2007 proposed programme budget under section 13 of the budget.

    According to Part II of the text, Capital Master Plan, the Assembly, recognizing the urgent need to continue the implementation of the design and pre-construction phase of the plan, would authorize the Secretary-General to proceed with design work, related project management and management of pre-construction services to the extent that these activities can be implemented without prejudice to the decision by the Assembly at a later stage regarding its selection of the strategy for the implementation of the plan.

    By further terms of the draft, the Assembly would decide to convert $8.2 million of the existing commitment authority into an appropriation with assessment for 2006 so as to provide for the continuation of design work and related project management and management of pre-construction phases, including swing space requirements, as a minimum amount that would be required for the Plan's implementation during the first four months of 2006 irrespective of the strategy for the Plan to be endorsed by the Assembly at a later stage.  The Assembly would decide to revert, as a matter of priority, to the issue at its first resumed session in March 2006.

    Part III of the text relates to administrative expenses of the United Nations Joint Staff Pension Fund.  By its terms, the Assembly would approve expenses, chargeable directly to the Fund, totalling $91.72 million net for 2006-2007 and a revised estimate of $89.56 million net for 2004-2005 for the Fund's administration.  It would also approve an additional amount of $1.1 million above the level of resources set out in Section 1, Overall policymaking, direction and coordination, of the 2006-2007 proposed programme budget as the United Nations share of the cost of the administrative expenses of the central secretariat of the Fund.  The Fund would be authorized to supplement voluntary contributions to the Fund for 2006-2007 by an amount not exceeding $200,000.

    By the terms of Part IV, Subvention requested by the United Nations Institute for Disarmament Research, the Assembly would endorse the proposal that request for a subvention to the Institute be submitted for review and approval by the Assembly on a biennial basis in the context of its consideration of the proposed programme budget for the related biennium.  It would approve the request for a subvention to the Institute of $468,100 for 2006-2007 from the United Nations regular budget on the understanding that no additional provision would be required under Section 4, Disarmament, of the 2006-2007 proposed programme budget.

    Under Part V, Revised estimates resulting from resolutions and decisions adopted by the Economic and Social Council at its resumed 2005 organizational and first substantive session, the Assembly would take note of the Secretary-General's report and endorse the recommendations of the ACABQ in its related report.

    By Part VI of the text, Estimates in respect of special political missions, good offices and other political initiatives authorized by the General Assembly and/or the Security Council, the Assembly would approve the charge of $100 million for the 26 missions dealt with in the Secretary-General's report against the provision for special political missions requested under Section 3, Political affairs, of the 2006-2007 proposed programme budget.  It would also note that an unallocated balance of $255.95 million would remain against the provision of $355.95 million for special political missions under Section 3 of the budget.

    Part VII, On the construction of additional office facilities at the Economic Commission for Africa in Addis Ababa, would have the Assembly take note of the Secretary-General's report thereon, as well as the related report of the Advisory Committee.

    By Part VIII of the text, Possibility of operating guided tours, bookstores and gift shops at the United Nations Office in Nairobi and the cost implication thereof, the Assembly would request the Secretary-General to organize effective 1 January 2006 a guided tours operation at the United Nations Office in Nairobi and, in this context, further request him to report the actual incomes and expenditures of the guided tours operation at Nairobi in the budget performance report for 2006-2007 under Income Section 3, Services to the public.

    The Assembly, by the terms of Part IX of the draft on efforts of the Economic and Social Commission for Asia and the Pacific (ESCAP) in rationalization of monitoring and evaluation, would welcome ESCAP's efforts in rationalization of monitoring and evaluation in accordance with Assembly resolution 58/269, especially in carrying out self-evaluation activities in a systematic and comprehensive manner.  In that regard, ESCAP would be requested to report on its activities in this area in the 2008-2009 proposed programme budget.

    Part X, Work plan on Economic Commission for Europe (ECE) reform, would have the Assembly welcome the work plan on the Commission's reform adopted on 2 December 2005 and decide that the Commission should implement the adopted measures outlined in the decision E/ECE/1434/Rev.1 and to this end request the Secretary-General to allocate the requisite resources within Section 19, Economic development in Europe of the 2006-2007 programme budget.

    By Part XI, administrative and financial implications of the decisions and recommendations contained in the report of the International Civil Service Commission for 2005, the Assembly would decide to approve a new scale of assessment for professional and higher categories recommended by the International Civil Service Commission (ICSC) in its report with effect from 1 January 2006.

    The Assembly would, by Part XII, financial viability of the United Nations Institute for Training and Research (UNITAR), decide to provide UNITAR with $242,400, being the equivalent of the amount of rental, maintenance and other administrative costs associated with conducting the core training programme for 2006-2007.  It would also reiterate that in order to ensure stability of the funding for the General Fund and the viability of repaying the United Nations in debt, UNITAR should systematically charge 13 per cent programme support costs to special purpose grants whenever possible.

    Part XIII on the ethics office, comprehensive review of the governance arrangements including an independent external evaluation of the auditing and oversight systems; and the independent audit advisory committee, would have the Assembly note that the approved resources would provide for the establishment of an ethics office and the undertaking of the evaluation study called for under paragraph 164 of General Assembly resolution 60/1.

    By further terms, the Assembly would decide to establish an Independent Audit Advisory Committee to assist the Assembly to discharge its oversight responsibilities, and request the Secretary-General to propose its terms of reference and to ensure coherence with the outcome of the ongoing review of oversight.

    On the contingency fund, Part XIII, the Assembly would note that a balance of $4.966 million remained in the fund.

    By Part XIV, the Assembly would take note of the revised estimates arising from recosting due to the effects of changes in the rates of exchange and inflation.

    The Assembly would also, by Part XV, approve the gross budget for the Joint Inspection Unit for the biennium 2006-2007 in the amount of $10.51 million.

    On the International Civil Service Commission, Part XVI, the Assembly would approve the gross budget for that body for 2006-2007 in the amount of $16.21 million.

    Finally, by the terms of Part XVII, the Assembly would approve the gross budget for the Department of Safety and Security for 2006-2007 in the amount of $225.68 million, with field security operations receiving some $201.42 million and security and safety services at the United Nations Office in Vienna receiving $24.26 million.

    The representative of Cuba said the draft had been prepared without consultation even in the Fifth Committee.  For example, in the draft resolution on the Capital Master Plan, the Assembly would decide to allocate some $8 million to the Plan.  How had that decision been arrived at?  The positions of delegations on the sum of money required to keep the office's operations had not been known.  In the document, the figure adopted was below that requested to keep the project going.  There was an irony in that.  There had been a great deal of discussion on the matter over the last three months.  Double standards seemed to be at work, as well as changes of position.

    Uganda's representative addressed the issue of special political missions and the Office of the Special Representative of the Secretary-General for the Great Lakes Region. His delegation had raised concerns about the absence of staff with knowledge of the area there.  He wished to put on record that in January 2006, when the renewal of the mandate of the Office would be taken up, his concerns would also be addressed.  His delegation would return to that matter when the Committee addressed the special political missions during the first resumed session.  The Office was of vital importance, as well as its efficiency.

    On the composition of the panel of experts on the Democratic Republic of the Congo and its ability to report accurately, he said that concerns remained.  In the light of improved bilateral relations in the region and the inflammatory nature of the reporting, he did not see continued relevance of the panel.  Since its mandate was to expire, he did not support the moves to establish another one.

    The representative of the United Republic of Tanzania said that his delegation had joined the consensus on Part XIII, paragraph 4 of draft resolution A/C.5/60/L.27, because it considered the Independent Audit Advisory Committee to be very important.  However, to make the Committee effective, its terms of reference must be clear to avoid duplication with other oversight bodies.  The terms of reference should also respond to the intended goals of that body.  He wished that the Independent Audit Advisory Committee were established after the Assembly had approved its terms of reference.

    The representative of India drew the Committee's attention to part II of L.27 on the Capital Master Plan, saying that he had the same concerns as the representative of Cuba.  To maintain "a semblance of working procedures" of the Committee, he inquired about the figure indicated there.  In informal consultations, the delegates had been told about the amount of $16 million.  He questioned the adequacy of the figure and wondered for how long it would cover the requirements.

    Jamaica's representative, speaking on behalf of the Group of 77 and China, said she was concerned about the adoption of some of the resolutions, in particular on the Capital Master Plan.  She was not aware of consideration of the resolution in informals.  The figure of $8 million was never agreed on by the Fifth Committee.  She was taking the floor to express concern about the Committee's procedure, particularly in resolutions coming to them for the first time and adopted with such speed.

    The United Nations Controller, WARREN SACH, explained that the figure of $8 million reflected the request for a four-month period through April 2006.  The earlier figure of $16 million was for a six-month period.  In paragraph four of the draft, the Committee would revert to the issue in March.  For that reason, the amount of $8 million would be sufficient until the Committee next reviewed the matter.  In short, the difference amounted to a different time period.

    Mexico's representative stressed the need for documents adopted to reflect agreements reached.  He asked the Secretariat to ensure that language in the draft faithfully reflected the language included in the ACABQ's report and to make the necessary corrections so as to reflect the agreement reached by the Committee.

    Cuba's representative, addressing the issue of the reform of the ECE, noted that as far as he could recall, the Committee had never looked at the matter.  He did not remember having seen the work plan or the decision that appeared in the draft.  Where did the document come from?  He thought it was a matter for the CPC.  He needed to know about the matter before he could adopt it.

    The CHAIRMAN said he would provide an explanation.

    The Committee then approved the draft, acting without a vote.

    By a draft resolution on unforeseen and extraordinary expenses (document A/C.5/60/L.12), the Assembly would authorize the Secretary-General, with prior concurrence of the Advisory Committee on Administrative and Budgetary Questions (ACABQ) and subject to the Financial Regulations and Rules of the United Nations, to enter into commitments in the biennium 2006-2007 to meet unforeseen and extraordinary expenses.  The concurrence of the Advisory Committee would not be necessary for commitments under $8 million in any one year of the biennium relating to the maintenance of peace and security; some commitments relating to the activities of the international Court of Justice; and commitments not exceeding $1 million for security measures pursuant to Section XI, paragraph 6 of resolution 59/276.

    Under the terms of the draft, the Secretary-General would report on the commitments made and the circumstances relating to them to the ACABQ and the General Assembly at its sixty-first and sixty-second sessions.  Such information would be submitted along with supplementary estimates in respect of the commitments.  Should a decision by the Security Council result in the need for the Secretary-General to enter into commitments relating to the maintenance of peace and security in an amount exceeding $10 million, that matter would be brought to the Assembly.

    Acting without a vote, the Committee approved the draft resolution.

    By the terms of a draft resolution on the Working Capital Fund for the biennium 2006-2007 (document A/C.5/60/L.13), which was approved without a vote, the Assembly would establish such a fund in the amount of $100 million.  Member States would make advances to the Fund in accordance with the scale of assessments for contributions to the budget for the year 2006.  Should the provisions made for the Fund prove inadequate, the Secretary-General would be authorized to utilize, in 2006-2007, cash from special funds and accounts in his custody or the proceeds of loans authorized by the Assembly.

    The Secretary-General would be authorized to advance from the Working Capital Fund the sums that may be needed to finance budgetary appropriations pending the receipt of contributions, with the advanced sums reimbursed as soon as contributions are received.  Also financed from the Fund would be the commitments relating to unforeseen and extraordinary expenses; the sums needed to continue the revolving fund to finance miscellaneous self-liquidating purchases and activities not exceeding $200,000; the sums that may be necessary to enable the Tax Equalization Fund to meet current commitments pending the accumulation of credits; and -- with prior concurrence of the Advisory Committee -- the payments of advance insurance premiums where the period of insurance extends beyond the end of the biennium in which payment is made.

    Having adopted the draft resolutions, the Committee adopted the draft report of the Fifth Committee on the 2006-2007 proposed programme budget contained in A/C.5/60/L.28 Parts I and II.

    By the terms of yet another draft decision before the Committee (document A/C.5/60/L.29) the Assembly would defer a number of questions for future consideration.  Among those, the document lists a series of reports on the Capital Master Plan, as well as measures to strengthen accountability at the United Nations; contributions by the Department of Management to the improvement of management practices; a unified security management system; coverage of staff by the malicious acts insurance policy; after-service health insurance; programme planning; report of the International Civil Service Commission (ICSC); and activities of the Office of Internal Oversight Services (OIOS); and several reports related to human resources management.

    Before acting on the text, the Chairman informed the Committee that the first part of the resumed sixtieth session would be held in March 2006 and the second part would be held in May 2006.

    Acting without a vote, the Committee then approved the draft decision.

    Next before the Committee was a draft resolution on Human Resources Management (document A/C.5/60/L.23), by the terms of which the Assembly would request the Secretary-General to ensure that the highest standards of efficiency, competence and integrity serve as the paramount consideration in the employment of staff, with due regard for the principle of equitable geographical distribution, in accordance with the Charter. It would also note that key human resources management targets are not being met by Departments.

    In connection with the establishment of the Management Performance Board to replace the Accountability Panel, the Assembly would request the Secretary-General to submit to the General Assembly for its consideration at the sixty-first session, a report on the activities of that Board since its inception, including how it met the request of the Assembly that the internal system of accountability with respect to human resources policies and objectives be strengthened in order to hold programme managers accountable for their performance in achieving the objective contained in human resources action plans.

    The Assembly would also note that, due to the projected retirements, many Member States may become unrepresented and underrepresented during the period 2005-2009 and request the Secretary-General to urgently take steps to address that situation.  In that connection, it would reiterate its request that the Secretary-General include an analysis of the level of underrepresentation in his report on the composition of the Secretariat.  Another request to the Secretary-General would involve an assessment -- to be presented during the sixty-first session -- on recruitment to P-2 and P-3 posts, including the effect of the national competitive examinations and, if relevant, recommendations on how to improve that method of recruitment.

    Also by the text, the Assembly would address the issue of amendments to staff regulations and rules and request a report on the practice of United Nations staff members having to renounce permanent residence status in a country outside the country of their nationality, including cases where staff had been exceptionally authorized to retain permanent residence status in accordance with section 5.7 of ST/AI/2000/19 and the criteria used in making such exceptions.  The Secretary-General would be requested to report on the implementation of the regulations governing the status, basic rights and duties of officials other than Secretariat officials and experts on mission adopted in its resolution 56/280.

    The representative of Ukraine introduced editorial changes to the text, which was then approved, as amended, without a vote.

    The United States representative said, as a strong supporter of effective human resources management, he was pleased with the approval of the draft.  The staff regulations amendments were urgently needed.  On the financial disclosure amendments, that represented a significant step forward towards enforcement of stronger ethical behaviour.  He called the Secretary-General's attention to the fact that the resolution required him to report on the implementation of the regulations governing the status, basic rights and duties of officials other than Secretariat officials and experts on mission adopted in its resolution 56/280.  He expected that report would detail real progress.

    Nigeria's representative said that she had been unable to comment on a previous draft, because the action was going too fast.  On this one, paragraphs were not numbered, but in connection with the paragraph that read:  "Notes that, due to the projected retirements, many Member States may become un- and under-represented during the period 2005-2009 and requests the Secretary-General to urgently take steps to address this", she wanted to say, for the record, that she hoped the Secretary-General would heed the comments contained in that paragraph.  Many Member States, particularly from Africa, would become seriously underrepresented by 2009.

    Responding to a query from Cuba, Switzerland's representative said that her delegation had introduced the text on the ECE reform in an informal meeting.  The text was supported by all 55 Member States of the ECE represented in New York.  It was her understanding that an agreement on the text had been reached this afternoon.  Agreement also included the text on the ECE reform that would appear in the resolution on the special subjects.

    At the conclusion of the meeting, the Chairman of the Committee, Mr. ASHE, thanked the delegations for agreeing to work under difficult circumstances today.

    Turning to "household issues", he said that it was necessary to look at the means of improving the Committee's work methods.  Actually, a step had already been made in that direction:  the Fifth Committee was the only one that began its meetings on time, and it should be commended for that.  At the same time, he had requested that informal informals should be held to make recommendations during the first resumed session on the ways of improving work.

    * *** *