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DIRECTOR-GENERAL OF UNESCO

UNESCO hosts the spring 2009 session of the Chief Executives Board

UNESCO hosts the spring 2009 session of the Chief Executives Board
  • © UNESCO/A. Wheeler

On 4 April 2009, the Director-General of UNESCO, Mr Koïchiro Matsuura, welcomed to UNESCO Headquarters the Executive Heads of UN system organizations participating in the spring 2009 session of the UN Chief Executives Board for Coordination (CEB).

The formal session of the CEB, held at UNESCO in the morning of 4 April, was followed by a retreat in the afternoon and a private session in the morning of 5 April at the Westin Paris Hotel. This was the first time UNESCO hosted a session of the CEB under the chairmanship of Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon.

At its formal session, the CEB endorsed the decisions taken by the High-level Committee on Programme (HLCP), the United Nations Development Group (UNDG) and the High-level Committee on Management (HLCM). The Board also examined a summary of policy recommendations on UN system staff security and safety. In this context, the Director-General informed CEB members of the security management arrangements he had made as the Designated Official for the security of staff and premises of the United Nations system in France. The CEB then adopted a statement to Member States underscoring the UN system’s commitment to a strengthened and enhanced system-wide security management system and highlighting the need for adequate financial resources.

The discussions at the CEB retreat in the afternoon focused on the global financial and economic crisis. The Secretary-General, the President of the World Bank, the Managing Director of the International Monetary Fund (IMF) and the Director-General of the World Trade Organization (WTO) briefed the CEB on current developments and the outcome of the 2 April G-20 Leaders’ meeting in London.

Welcoming the historic decisions of the G-20 Summit and the commitment of US$ 1.1 trillion of additional resources to address the crisis, the CEB adopted a communiqué (see CEB Communiqué*) following its deliberations. It highlights the social effects of the crisis, including its impact on the achievement of the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs). The communiqué also underscores the central role of the multilateral system in articulating and delivering a coherent global response to the crisis, and calls for joint action of the United Nations, IMF and the World Bank in translating the multilateral response into action at the country level. The CEB further reiterates the UN’s “common commitment to assist countries and the global community to confront the crisis, accelerate recovery and build a fair and inclusive globalization allowing for sustainable economic, social and environmental development for all, while facing the future in a spirit of conviction of the need for transformational change.”

UN Chief Executives agreed upon nine joint initiatives to help address the multiple facets of the crisis, as suggested by the CEB-HLCP. These include additional financing for the most vulnerable; food security; trade; a green economy initiative; a global jobs pact; a social protection floor; humanitarian, security and social stability; technology and innovation; and monitoring and analysis. UNESCO will contribute fully to these initiatives according to its mandate and expertise. The Director-General notably pledged the Organization’s assistance in the establishment of a UN system-wide vulnerability monitoring and alert mechanism to track developments, and report on the political, economic, social and environmental dimensions of the crisis, referring in particular to EFA Global Monitoring Report and the World Water Assessment Report.

At the private session, the Secretary-General briefed CEB members on the latest political developments.

The CEB session in Paris was organized with the cooperation and support of the French authorities. Prime Minister François Fillon and Foreign Minister Bernard Kouchner received the Executive Heads at their respective Ministerial palaces, Matignon and Quai d’Orsay, on 3 and 4 April respectively.

On the margins of the CEB, UNESCO hosted the 31st meeting of the Committee of Cosponsoring Organizations (CCO) of UNAIDS. Discussions focused on the future directions of UNAIDS, in particular in response to the global food crisis and economic recession, as well as the UNAIDS Outcome Framework for 2009-2011 and the Unified Budget and Workplan (UBW) for 2010-2011.

The Director-General also held bilateral discussions with Mr Ban Ki-moon, UN Secretary-General; senior officials of the larger specialized agencies – ILO, FAO, WHO and UNIDO; and Mr Francis Gurry, Director-General of WIPO.

  • Author(s):Office of the Spokesperson
  • Source:Flash Info N° 057-2009
  • 07-04-2009
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