63rd Session of the Commission on Narcotic Drugs, Agenda Item 4: Strategic Management, Administrative, and Budget Issues
As delivered by Deputy Chief of Mission Nicole Shampaine
Vienna, Austria, March 3, 2020
Thank you, Chair, members of the Secretariat, and distinguished colleagues.
The United States would like to welcome Ms. Waly to her new post as Executive Director and thank her for providing the report under this agenda item on the activities of UNODC in 2019. The report highlights the breadth of important activities this organization undertakes to combat the world drug problem.
The United States continues to believe that UNODC provides vital services to all Member States. In recognition of this, the United States contributed more than $110 million in voluntary funding to UNODC in 2019 to support a wide range of activities. Our contributions clearly demonstrate the value we place on UNODC’s initiatives and our commitment to the organization. It is imperative these funds continue to be responsibly administered in an open and transparent manner.
In this regard we would also like to thank the co-chairs of UNODC’s Working Group on Governance and Finance (FINGOV), Mr. Ignacio Baylina Ruiz and Ms. Natasha Agostini for their leadership. FINGOV is an important tool for providing transparency and fostering greater communication between the UNODC Secretariat and Member States. FINGOV has this vital role to play, but we must continue to ensure that decision-making responsibilities remain with the Commission itself.
As many of my colleagues in the donor community have mentioned, the United States continues to have concerns about transparency in the decision-making at headquarters on the use of Program Support Costs. We encourage the Secretariat to more broadly distribute Program Support Cost funding among various divisions at headquarters and in the field, including to support the important field presence of UNODC across the world.
It is also essential that UNODC’s field offices are well-integrated with UN country teams around the world. In this regard, the United States continues to support the UN Secretary-General’s reform efforts. We advocate a balanced approach whereby the Resident Coordinators exercise effective leadership and ensure coordination at the country level. At the same time, the headquarters of UN agencies need to continue to provide guidance, oversight, and accountability for the work of their field offices.
Finally, I would like to reiterate the United States’ support for efforts to develop comprehensive diversity, recruitment, and workforce planning strategies. We hope that UNODC will continue to update and revise its strategy to achieve 50/50 gender parity, while bearing in mind Article 101 of the UN Charter.
Thank you, Chair.