U.S. Statement on Financial and Budgetary Matters as Delivered by Deputy Chief of Mission Louis L. Bono
Vienna, Austria, October 20, 2022
Thank you, President. The United States strongly supports the UN Convention against Transnational Organized Crime and promotes its effective implementation.
As criminal networks evolve and new threats emerge, our collective work to confront and combat these challenges is even more pressing.
The impact of these criminal networks on our countries is not abstract or theoretical but is directly devasting countless lives around the world. As an example, the trafficking of illicit synthetic opioids, which took the lives of nearly 108,000 Americans last year, has become a top national security and public health priority for the United States. The threat of synthetic drugs is now recognized as a global epidemic, one that we will all have to fight together, utilizing the international cooperation provisions of this Convention.
With regard to the funding modalities for the Convention’s review mechanism, the United States supports the use of existing UN regular budget funding complemented by extrabudgetary resources. Since 2019, the United States has provided more than $2 million dollars to support the mechanism’s implementation.
However, we note the funding for the review mechanism should not consume or divert the existing resources of the Conference and its working groups. As we have seen this week, the resources for this Conference are limited, so much so that only one session of the Committee of the Whole was supported with interpretation in the six languages of the United Nations.
To this end, we note with appreciation the Member State contributions made to date to ensure the operations of the review mechanism and encourage others to support these activities. We also encourage Member States to provide financial support for this Conference and its subsidiary bodies to ensure that we can do the important work that we have been called to do under the Convention.
We also encourage UNODC, in consultation with member states, to develop measures of financial transparency and undertake efforts to reduce costs and streamline operations, both in Vienna and in the field.
We hope that the UNODC budget process will remain an open and transparent dialogue rooted in partnership, with the interests and concerns of all Member States taken into full account.
Finally, the United States champions UNODC’s efforts to develop comprehensive diversity, recruitment, and workforce planning strategies to enhance gender balance and geographical representation.
The paramount focus on selecting diverse candidates should be based on merit and competence, as enshrined in Article 101 of the UN Charter. Thank you, President.