Question of Palestine home
12 April 1996
Executive Board of
the United Nations
and of the United Nations
12 April 1996
Annual session 1996
6-17 May 1996, Geneva
REPORT ON THE SECOND REGULAR SESSION
NEW YORK, 25-29 MARCH 1996
I. ORGANIZATIONAL MATTERS 3
II. UNFPA: STRATEGY FOR ALLOCATION OF UNFPA RESOURCES 6
III. UNFPA: COUNTRY PROGRAMMES AND RELATED MATTERS 9
IV. UNFPA: EFFECTIVENESS OF THE UNFPA
PUBLICATIONS PROGRAMME 16
V. UNFPA: ROLE OF UNFPA IN ASSESSING AND MEETING
CONTRACEPTIVE REQUIREMENTS AND LOGISTICS
MANAGEMENT NEEDS 20
VI. UNFPA: MEMBERSHIP IN THE UNICEF/WHO
JOINT COMMITTEE ON HEALTH POLICY 21
UNDP/UNFPA joint seqment
VII. UNDP/UNFPA: HARMONIZATION OF PRESENTATION OF
BUDGETS AND ACCOUNTS 23
VIII. UNDP/UNFPA: THE JOINT UNITED NATIONS PROGRAMME ON
HIV/AIDS (UNAIDS) 25
IX. UNDP: AGENCY SUPPORT COSTS 29
X. UNDP: COUNTRY PROGRAMMES AND RELATED MATTERS:
REPORTS ON MID-TERM REVIEWS 33
XI. UNDP: FINANCIAL, BUDGETARY AND ADMINISTRATIVE MATTERS 41
XII. UNDP: EVALUATION 45
XIII. UNDP: ASSISTANCE TO THE PALESTINIAN PEOPLE 51
XIV. OTHER MATTERS 54
. Allocation of subjects for future sessions 63
96/13. Future country programming process of the
United Nations Population Fund 11
96/14. Role of the United Nations Population Fund
in assessing and meeting contraceptive requirements
and logistics management needs 21
96/15. Allocation of resources to country programmes
of the United Nations Population Fund 8
96/16. Joint United Nations Programme on HIV/AIDS (UNAIDS) 29
96/17. Inter-agency coordination in health policy
and programming 22
96/18. Publications programme of the
United Nations Population Fund 19
96/19. Programme of assistance to the Palestinian people 53
96/20. UNDP evaluation 50
96/21. UNDP: Financial, budgetary and administrative matters 44
96/22. UNDP communication and information programme 59
96/23. Agency support costs 33
96/24. Overview of decisions adopted by the
Executive Board at its second regular session 1996 59
XIII. ASSISTANCE TO THE PALESTINIAN PEOPLE
232. The Associate Administrator introduced the report of the Administrator on the Programme of Assistance to the Palestinian People (PAPP) (DP/1996/15), noting that the past year had been one of great expansion, change and adaptation to the evolving situation in the region.
233. Four elements of the report were highlighted by the Associate Administrator. First, the ability of UNDP to provide quick delivery in priority areas for the Palestinian Authority, the donor community and UNDP. It had resulted in an expansion of the programme's technical, engineering and programming staff, both in Gaza and the West Bank. One concrete example of the mechanism was the employment and income-generation programme. A second factor was the generosity of the international donor community, with virtually all of the $34 million in expenditures in 1995 coming from bilateral agencies, the United Nations Capital Development Fund and UNFPA. It was estimated that $46 million in expenditures would come from the same sources in 1996. The Associate Administrator thanked the Government of Japan, in particular, for its significant financial support and collaboration with regard to the programme. Support from donors had enabled the programme to become largely self-financing.
234. A third element was the completion in mid-1995 of a programme framework covering 1996-1998. The document, which emphasized institution- building, the empowerment and advancement of women, environment, and sustainable livelihoods through employment-generating public works programmes, had the full endorsement of the Palestinian Authority. A programme of at least $94 million was envisaged for the three-year period.
235. A final point concerned the participation of the programme in coordination, including the Consultative Group meetings for the West Bank and Gaza, and the Working Group meetings in the multilateral process. UNDP had also supported the Local Area Coordinating Committees, established by the United Nations Special Coordinator.
236. The representative of Palestine expressed his appreciation to UNDP for the work of PAPP and to the Associate Administrator for inaugurating the office in Gaza. While an international success story was being hailed, his authorities wished to underline the destruction in the economic and social sector in the Occupied Territories as a result of Israeli actions. In particular, he called on Israel to reverse the decision to close its borders, which was preventing the movement of persons and goods. With regard to the work of UNDP in Gaza and the West Bank, UNDP core resources to PAPP should be increased, given the self-financing nature of the Programme. He acknowledged with thanks the financial contributions of a number of Governments for their support to PAPP and urged the international community to increase its contributions.
237. Another delegation welcomed a recent agreement between UNDP and his Government to provide technical cooperation to developing countries. He noted that the Executive Board must discuss how best to implement the policies contained in the report. He cited the intervention by the previous speaker, which had included political issues that were not relevant to the discussion by the Board. The closure of his country's borders was not intended to hurt the economy in Gaza and the West Bank, but rather to provide security and preventing terrorists from entering his country. He stated that the delivery of food, building materials and textiles had been allowed. His Government hoped that the international community would eradicate terrorism. He encouraged UNDP to provide assistance to the Palestinian people and to promote increased cooperation.
238. Many delegations expressed support for the report and the role of PAPP, in particular in job creation and income generation. Close cooperation with other international organizations in providing assistance was encouraged. The Transfer of Knowledge through Expatriate Nationals (TOKTEN) programme was cited as a good example of the broad contribution of UNDP. The self-financing nature of PAPP was widely supported by speakers, with some suggesting that it could serve as an example for other programmes. Delegations were pleased to see the emphasis on productive assets and outputs in the report. Good coordination and positive inputs had contributed to the peace process.
239. Several speakers requested an increase in the core resources earmarked for PAPP under the successor programming arrangements.
240. The Associate Administrator noted that self-financing was only possible if UNDP was able to spend what it received. At the present time, expenditures had slowed and there was some difficulty in ensuring that the programming in the pipeline was carried out. With regard to an increase in core resources, he explained that the core budget contribution was $4 million per annum for 1997 and 1998, earmarked from line 1.1.3. That represented almost a doubling of the fifth programming cycle resources of $2.1 million per annum. If the funding of PAPP had been earmarked from lines 1.1.1 and 1.1.2, the notional figure for 1997 and 1998 would have been $600,000 per annum.
241. The Director of the Programme of Assistance to the Palestinian People underlined the high priority of UNDP on employment and job creation, and noted the recent contributions of the Governments of Japan, Norway and Sweden of $11.5 million for activities in job creation.
242. The Special Representative of PAPP in Jerusalem stated that UNDP would use the programme as a model for future decentralized activities. He underlined the need to utilize cost-effective modalities such as the TOKTEN programme. One of the goals of PAPP was to build bridges to all countries in the region, particularly in the agricultural sector. He noted that it was not always possible to keep to sustainable human development criteria in implementing the programme because of its activities in providing wages for work by unemployed persons. With the support of donors, he hoped that changes could be implemented to avoid red tape in implementing the Programme's development work.
243. One delegation thanked the Associate Administrator for his explanation of how core resources were allocated to PAPP. He explained that the draft decision would maintain the request to increase core resources if it was possible. Another delegation supported the flexible formula on financing, and underlined the need for UNDP not to divert resources earmarked for PAPP to other regional projects.
244. One delegation asked for clarification about the source of any proposed increase in funding for PAPP from core resources and suggested that the text of the draft decision include a reference to the resources coming from line 1.1.3. Another delegation noted that confirmation had already been given by the secretariat that line 1.1.3 would be the source of additional resources for PAPP.
245. The Executive Board adopted the following decision:
Programme of Assistance to the Palestinian People
The Executive Board
of the report of the Administrator (DP/1996/15);
the Administrator to envisage increasing the core resources of the United Nations Development Programme allocated to the Programme of Assistance to the Palestinian People under the future arrangements for the period 1997-1998;
the international donor community to continue its high level of contributions to the Programme of Assistance to the Palestinian People and to take full advantage of the Programme's well-tested implementation and delivery capacities.