Press Releases

    21 November 2002


    NEW YORK, 20 November (UN Headquarters) -- The General Assembly would call for efforts to promote good public and corporate governance in ensuring sustained economic growth, poverty eradication and sustainable development worldwide, according to one of three draft resolutions approved without a vote by the Second Committee (Economic and Financial) this morning.

    Introduced by the representative of Belgium, the draft on preventing and combating corrupt practices and transfer of funds of illicit origin, and returning such funds to their countries of origin (document A/C.2/57/L.46), would also have the Assembly call for further international cooperation in supporting governments to prevent and address such transfer, and to return such funds and assets.

    The Assembly would, by other terms of the draft, request the international community's support for national efforts to strengthen human and institutional capacity, as well as regulatory frameworks for the prevention of corruption, bribery and money laundering, as well as for the return of illicit funds and assets to the countries of origin.

    By the terms of the second draft, on preparations for the International Ministerial Conference on Transit Transport Cooperation (document A/C.2/57/L.32), the Assembly would decide to convene the Conference at Almaty, Kazakhstan, on 28 and 29 August 2003. It would decide also that the preparatory committee would hold two sessions. The sixth Meeting of Governmental Experts from Landlocked and Transit Developing Countries and Representatives of Donor Countries and Financial and Development Institutions, to be held in New York from 23 to 27 June 2003, would serve as the first session, and the Meeting of Senior Officials, to be held in Almaty from 25 to 27 August, would be the second.

    Further by that text, introduced by the representative of Morocco, the Assembly would designate the High Representative for the Least Developed Countries, Landlocked Developing Countries and Small Island Developing States as the Secretary-General of the Conference. It would request him, in close cooperation with the United Nations Conference on Trade and Development (UNCTAD) and the World Bank, to organize all sessions of the intergovernmental preparatory committee and decide that regional and subregional meetings finalize their work by April 2003.

    The Assembly would, by further terms, ask the Secretary-General of the United Nations to continue seeking voluntary contributions towards Conference preparations, particularly the participation of representatives of landlocked developing countries, transit developing countries and the least developed countries, in the preparatory process. He would be further requested to launch a public information campaign and to raise public awareness of the objectives and significance of the Conference.

    By the terms of the third draft, on the World Summit on the Information Society (document A/C.2/57/L.42), the Assembly would encourage non-governmental organizations (NGOs), civil society and the private sector to contribute further to the intergovernmental preparatory process of the Summit and the Summit itself. It would also encourage all relevant United Nations and other intergovernmental organizations, as well as the United Nations Information and Communication Technologies Task Force, to support the preparatory process.

    That text, also introduced by Morocco, would have the Assembly reiterate its call to the international community to make voluntary contributions to the special trust fund established by the International Telecommunications Union to support Summit preparations, as well as the participation of developing countries in the regional and preparatory meetings to be held in 2003, as well as in the Summit itself. The Assembly would request the International Telecommunications Union, as the leading manager in Summit preparations, to cooperate with the Department of Public Information in launching a public information campaign to raise global awareness.

    Also this morning, the Committee decided, in light of similar texts approved during the meeting, to withdraw draft resolutions on the World Summit on the Information Society (document A/C.2/57/L.7); on preparations for the International Ministerial Meeting on Transit Transport Cooperation (document A/C.2/57/L.2); and on preventing and combating corrupt practices and transfer of funds of illicit origin and returning such funds to the countries of origin (document A/C.2/57/L.9).

    The Committee also heard the introduction of six draft resolutions for the Committee’s consideration. Venezuela's representative, speaking on behalf of the "Group of 77" developing countries and China, introduced a text on protection of global climate for present and future generations of mankind (document A/C.2/57/L.43). Noting that some 97 nations had acceded to the Kyoto Protocol, he urged those who had not ratified it to do so and called on all States parties to implement the commitments that they had taken on. He added that the draft stressed the importance of technology transfer and of providing technical and financial assistance to developing countries.

    He also introduced a draft on ensuring effective support for sustained follow-up to the outcome of the International Conference on Financing for Development (document A/C.2/57/L.44). He said the Conference required a high-level, central and visible secretariat to serve as a focal point for overall follow-up. The secretariat's support structure should coherently link the efforts of institutional stakeholders -- such as the Bretton Woods institutions, the International Monetary Fund (IMF) and the World Trade Organization (WTO)-- as well as those of non-institutional stakeholders, including civil society, NGOs and the private sector.

    Japan’s representative introduced a draft resolution on the Decade of Education for Sustainable Development (document A/C.2/57/L.45), it focused on preparations for that Decade, which would start in 2005. By its terms, the General Assembly would select the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) as the lead agency in promoting the Decade and ask that agency to develop a draft international implementation scheme. It would also invite governments to include concrete measures to implement the Decade in their national educational plan by 2005.

    He introduced another text, on the United Nations University (document A/C.2/57/L.48), saying that the institution was expected to have greater importance in the United Nations system, particularly as concerned the urgent needs of developing countries in areas like capacity-building. Stressing that the University must increase the efficiency of its research and training programmes, he expressed the hope that the Assembly would adopt the draft by consensus, thus paving the way for the institution's revitalization.

    Introducing a draft resolution on the World Climate Change Conference (document A/C.2/57/L.47), the representative of the Russian Federation emphasized the importance of national, regional and international cooperation on climate issues. He expressed the hope that the Conference, to be held in Moscow from 29 September to 3 October 2003 within the overall framework of the Kyoto process, would strengthen United Nations actions on climate change and sustainable development.

    Denmark’s representative, speaking on behalf of the European Union and associated States, said the Moscow Conference would contribute further to the process of the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change, as well as to the work and findings of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change and the Kyoto Protocol.

    Switzerland’s representative introduced a text on the International Year of Mountains, 2002 (document A/C.2/57/L.49), saying that 74 countries had set up national committees for the Year and that numerous individuals, organizations and governments had taken active part in related activities. The text recognized the Year’s success, he said, and suggested that 11 December become International Mountain Day.

    The Second Committee will meet again at a date and time to be announced in the United Nations Journal.

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