Press Releases

    4 April 2005

    Economic and Financial Committee Approves Recommendations Aimed at Enhancing, Revitalizing Work

    NEW YORK, 1 April (UN Headquarters) -- In an effort to revitalize its work, the Second Committee (Economic and Financial) this afternoon emphasized that enhancing the work should be combined with the objective of reaching consensus, and that the final outcomes of its work needed to be meaningful and add value to the issues under consideration.

    Approving a conference room paper (document A/C.5/59/CRP2/Rev.1) containing recommendations on improving its work methods, the Committee noted that discussions and events linked to its work should contribute to a broader understanding and consideration of the issues.

    The paper states resolutions should be concise and action-oriented.  In order to facilitate the monitoring of the implementation of resolutions, reports should focus on implementation by the various actors addressed in those resolutions.  Special emphasis should be placed on implementation by the United Nations system.

    According to the paper, the Committee suggested that the practice be maintained of allocating enough time for negotiations after consideration of each cluster of its programme of work and proposed that, if required, more time be allocated for negotiations.  Also, different dates should be fixed in the organization of work for adoption of resolutions.

    The Committee further suggested that the long-standing practice of inviting key speakers and organizing panels and round tables should be maintained.  Attention should also be given to the increasing role of side events organized by Member States that were related to the Committee’s agenda.

    In order to ensure the timely consideration of the sub-items in the “Macroeconomic policy questions” cluster of its agenda, the Committee would request the Committee on Conferences to consider advancing the United Nations Conference on Trade and Development (UNCTAD) Board meeting, so that its report would be available by the middle of September.

    In its paper, the Committee acknowledged that Member States could consider continuing the discussions on review of the agenda and the methods of work of the Second Committee.

    After the text was approved, the representative of Luxembourg, speaking on behalf of the European Union, said the Union was a bit disappointed by the exercise, which had a great potential for major reform of the Committee.  She hoped, therefore, that discussions could be continued, in particular regarding the clustering of items in the macroeconomic area.

    In closing remarks, the Committee’s Chairman, Marco Balarezo (Peru), said the Second Committee was a political body of prime importance and deserved a greater role.  He warned that working methods and agendas were a means to an end, and that a great deal remained to be done in order to focus Committee efforts on crucial, global issues -- of which there were many.  Certain issues, in particular those of migration, the Millennium Development Goals, South-South cooperation and poverty, were not duly addressed during the eight weeks of meeting time available during an Assembly session.  That situation could be somewhat resolved by using multi-annual programmes.  However, the space and capacity were available to improve the way in which the topics were considered.  Although the Committee had not gone as far as it might have, it had produced results.

    The representatives of Cuba, Jamaica (speaking on behalf of the “Group of 77” developing countries and China), Croatia and Chile also spoke. 

    The Second Committee will meet again at a date to be announced.

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