27 December 2011

Department of Public Information • News and Media Division • New York

Secretary-General, Hailing Adoption of 2012-2013 Programme Budget,


Pledges Efficient Delivery of Mandates, Greater Cost Savings


Following are UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon’s remarks to the General Assembly following the adoption of the programme budget for 2012-2013 in New York on 24 December:

I am here to thank you all.  I am here to thank you for your dedication, your flexibility and your hard work.  Above all, I am here to thank you for solidifying, with me, our compact to make the most of our resources, to cut fat and to continue fulfilling every one of the critical global mandates entrusted to the United Nations.

We have fulfilled the compact between the Member States and the Secretariat.  But it is also a compact with all United Nations staff.  I am grateful for their hard work and dedication, even at grave risk, to ensure that the United Nations delivers for the world’s people.

All budget years are tough.  But this year was especially difficult.  Governments and people everywhere are struggling.  It is a time of global financial austerity.  We rose to this challenge with energy, creativity and the indispensible willingness to make hard choices.  We found savings while protecting our ability to get the job done.  We worked together and we made history.

The budget approved by the Fifth Committee is lower than the one from the previous biennium.  This was a collective achievement of all the Member States.  Your hard work, your late nights and your round-the-clock negotiations all paid off.  This keeps our promises to you, the Member States, and to the world’s people.

The task at hand is complete, but the imperative “to do more and better with less” remains.  That is why I give you my pledge:  I will instruct all of my managers to continue finding new ways to make the most of our precious resources.  I will ensure that we optimize your contributions.  I will ensure that all mandates given to the Secretariat will be delivered in full and with efficiency.  And one year from now I will return to you with greater cost savings.

You can count on my commitment.

Allow me to wish you all Merry Christmas and a very healthy, happy and prosperous New Year.

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For information media • not an official record