15 October 1997


Press Release
GA/9330



ASSEMBLY AUTHORIZES $4.2 MILLION TO CLEAR INVENTORY BACKLOG AT UNITED NATIONS LOGISTICS BASE IN BRINDISI, ITALY

19971015
Also Authorizes $812,000 Monthly Commitment To Maintain Base from 16 October 1997 - 30 June 1998

The General Assembly this morning authorized the Secretary-General to commit $4.2 million to clear inventory backlog at the United Nations Logistics Base in Brindisi, Italy, and to commit $812,100 monthly to maintain the base for the period from 16 October 1997 to 30 June 1998. It also endorsed the Secretary-General's proposal for development and implementation of a field- assets control system.

The Assembly took that action by adopting, without a vote, a two-part resolution contained in a report of its Fifth Committee (Administrative and Budgetary) on the financing of the Brindisi Base and the management of peacekeeping assets (document A/52/453). It authorized the Secretary-General to provide for a civilian establishment for the base consisting of 10 Professional, 6 Field Service and 28 locally recruited staff. The Assembly will consider additional appropriations when it examines relevant performance reports for peacekeeping operations.

The Secretary-General was asked to make proposals on different ways of funding the base, including self-financing mechanisms, and to consider expanding its use to other United Nations bodies such as the World Food Programme (WFP) and the Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR). The Assembly approved the Secretary-General's proposed policies regarding the transfer of used assets to the base after the closure of United Nations operations, such as the use of logistics experts to help identify items to be shipped. His proposed field assets control system would track the condition of assets and ensure efficient management of spare parts.

The Brindisi Base has been operating since 1994, and is central to United Nations peacekeeping operations in the former Yugoslavia, the Middle East and Africa. Italy offered the base to augment United Nations storage facilities at Pisa, Italy, which had been expected to close at the end of 1995.

The Assembly will meet again at 10 a.m. on Thursday, 16 October, to consider implementation of the outcome of the Copenhagen World Summit for Social Development. * *** *