Volume 1, Issue 1 , October 1997

In this issue:

General Assembly Begins Discussions of Economic and Social Issues
CDP Working Groups to Study Migration, Pensions
Project LINK
Mainstreaming Gender Equality
Forests: The IPF Has Landed Safely
Parties to Desertification Convention Tackle Financing
Current Meetings With DESA Participation
Fothcoming Publications
Public Administration
Just Published
The Home Page - Sustainable Development
Forthcoming Intergovernmental Meetings

General Assembly Begins Discussion of Economic and Social Issues

On 13 October the Second (Economic and Financial) and Third (Social and Human Rights) Committees of the General Assembly began their substantive work. DESA is heavily involved in providing support to the committees and the Plenary: close to 40 reports originating from nearly every area of the Department will provide the basis for deliberation on numerous agenda items.

In his introductory statement to the Second Committee on 13 October, Mr. Desai said that development cooperation should involve the emergence of shared values and solidarity as a basis of relations among nations. Doubts about the sustainability of growth, the financial vulnerability of developing nations that were integrating into the world economy, unemployment and social strife were all manifestations of the inadequacies of the development strategies that had been pursued in the past.

He added that among the policy issues that needed to be addressed in development cooperation was the financing for development. Another area that needed to be tackled was globalization and policy coherence. There also need to be careful management of public policy and better coordination of national policies in dealing with markets. There must be a consistent and constant commitment to sustainable development. Another area of focus is the struggle against poverty, exclusion and unemployment. Noting that those were just some of the issues the United Nations had addressed in the area of development, he called on the international community to work to develop a coherent partnership among the many global organizations dealing with development issues.

(The full text of the statement of Mr. Desai to the Second Committee, and a transcript of his statement to the Third Committee are available online at the UN hope page at location: http://www.un.org/documents/ga/docs/52/c2/ac252-stusg.htm and http://www.un.org/documents/ga/docs/52/c3/ac352-stusg.htm , respectively). Among its first actions the Second Committee took up three reports from the Development Policy Analysis Division on sources for the financing of development (A/52/399), an update on global financial integration (A/52/406), and the external debt crisis (A/52/290).

On 30 October the Committee will consider populations questions, for whose consideration the Population Division has prepared a report dubbed 'ICPD Plus Five' (A/52/208/Add.1), on follow up to the Cairo Population Conference, and one on migration issues (A/52/314).

A report on the results of Earth Summit Plus Five (A/52/280) prepared by the Division for Sustainable Development will be considered on November 5.

The Division for Social Development was engaged in the week of 13 October in servicing the Third Committee, when it considered social development issues, including questions relating to the world social situation and to youth, ageing, disabled persons and the family, and the Plenary, in its reviews the implementation of the World Summit for Social Development, on the basis of the report prepared by the Division (A/52/305).

This week the Division for the Advancement of Women will support the Third Committee in its review of the implementation of the outcome of the Fourth World Conference on Women on the basis of report A/52/281, and the status of women in the Secretariat (A/52/408), among other issues. For consideration in the Second Committee in on 3 November the Division has prepared a report on women in development (A/52/345), which focuses on gender mainstreaming.

A full account of the documents prepared by DESA can be gleaned documents on the state of preparation of the documentation for the fifty-second session of the General Assembly (A/INF/52/1), the Second Committee (A/C.2/52/L.1/Add.1/Rev.1) and the Third Committee (A/C.3/52/L.1).

The full text of the documents can be retrieved from the Electronic Document Archive on Optical Disk (ODS), accessible on staff desktop computers at the ODS icon.

CDP Working Groups to Study Migration, Pensions

Working groups of the Committee for Development Planning will be meeting in New York in the next few months to examine issues selected for the Committee's 1997-98 work programme.

One working group will meet October 29-31 to examine "labour migration and employment". Despite the end of large-scale labour recruitment by the developed countries since the oil price shock of the mid-1970s, international migration, legal and illegal, is increasing. Current migration is based largely on family reunification in the OECD countries, continued dependency on foreign workers in the Gulf States, and increasing labour immigration to the rapidly-growing middle-income countries of East Asia. The Working Group will examine policy options for countries sending and receiving migrant workers and for concerned international organizations.

A second working group meets 12-14 January 1998 to examine "intergenerational transfers and social security". In developed countries and some developing countries, declining fertility and increasing longevity will dramatically increase the proportion of retired people in the population over the next few decades, raising questions as to how their pensions and health care will be financed. The working group will consider the options of public and private pension and health care schemes, the possibility of extending the working lifetime, and possible conflicts between support for the elderly and the cost of supporting and educating children, both of which must be provided for out of the production of the working age population.

A third working group will meet 17-19 December to examine ways to improve the criteria for designating the UN list of least developed countries, currently with 49 countries.

For further details, please contact: Mr. Ralph Chipman, Division for Sustainable Development, Tel. (212) 963-5504, Fax. (212) 963-4260, E-mail: chipman@un.org

Project LINK, 22-26 September 1997, Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia

Project LINK, whose meetings are serviced by DESA in the Macroeconomics Division, is an international research network led by Nobel Laureate Laurence R. Klein of the University of Pennsylvania. It is a consortium of some 90 national economic modelling entities convened jointly by the University of Toronto and the Secretariat. Its recent meeting in Kuala Lumpur, from 22 to 26 September 1997, was attended by some 150 participants mostly from the academic world, governmental financial organizations, Central Banks, international organizations, including the World Bank, the International Monetary Fund and the European Community, . The Macroeconomics Division was represented by six staff members: Messrs. Barry Herman, Anatoly Smyshlyaev, Edouard Nsimba, David Choi, Clive Altshuler and Pingfan Hong.

The medium-term outlook for the world economy is cautiously optimistic in the view of the international economic forecasting team of Project LINK. The current moderate rate of growth is likely to continue in the next few years, but substantial adjustments must be made in some economies if they are to maintain their success of the past few years. World gross product is forecast to grow at an average rate of 3 per cent during 1997-1999. World trade, after slowing down to 4 per cent growth in 1996 from 8 per cent in 1995, is expected to expand at an average rate of 6 « per cent during 1997-1999. Inflation has reached historically low levels in many economies and is likely to remain subdued. Unemployment, however, has not fallen much in many countries, despite the current economic expansion, and will continue to be a serious problem and policy issue for many developed and developing countries as well as the economies in transition.

Mainstreaming Gender Equality

Over 60 participants from UN agencies and bilateral donor agencies met in Geneva from 15-17 September to consider how to take forward commitments to mainstreaming gender equality made in the Platform for Action of the 1995 Fourth World Conference on Women, and further endorsed at the 1997 session of the Economic and Social Council.

"Gender mainstreaming is a comprehensive strategy", said Angela E.V. King, UN Special Adviser on Gender Issues and Advancement of Women. It involves policies and operations, and the processes of their development. It also involves individuals, structures and institutions. But most of all, it involves change. A change from functioning in well-established structures and hierarchies, from dealing with ever-familiar interlocutors, and from following orthodox approaches and using traditional sources of information.

During panel presentations and working groups, participants discussed and pooled ideas on strategies, institutional development, and collaboration and partnership for mainstreaming gender equality. They agreed that achieving gender equality is not only a goal in itself but also a means to make poverty reduction and promotion of human rights and democratization more effective by addressing the needs of both women and men. A statement adopted at the meeting identifies some key challenges for achieving mainstreaming of gender equality, including increased commitment and political will, the development and institutionalization of higher levels of gender competence, and the establishment of tools for monitoring and mechanisms of accountability.

The meeting, organized by the UN Division for the Advancement of Women, brought together members of the UN Inter-Agency Committee on Women and Gender Equality and the Expert Group on Women and Development of the Development Assistance Committee of the Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD/DAC). Participants agreed that there should be a continued professional exchange on mainstreaming gender equality.

For further details, please contact: Ms. Kristen Timothy, Division for the Advancement of Women, Tel. (212) 963-3104, Fax. (212) 963-3463, E-mail: timothy@un.org.

The IPF Has Landed Safely..the IFF Has Taken Off..

The legacy of the IPF: Over a hundred proposals for action
ready for implementation

As reported earlier*, the Intergovernmental Panel on Forests completed its work in February 1997 resulting in over one hundred negotiated proposals for action on a number of issues related to Sustainable Forest Management including national forest programmes, forest assessment, criteria and indicators, traditional forest related knowledge, underlying causes of deforestation, etc.

Matters left pending included issues related to finance and transfer of technology, trade and environment, and institutions and legal instruments.

The outcome of the Panel has been recognized as a major achievement by a number of international fora including not only CSD 5, Earth Summit +5, and ECOSOC, but also FAO's Committee on Forestry (COFO), the Commonwealth Forestry Association, and the International Tropical Timber Council.

In a concerted response to the IPF's proposals for action addressed to multilateral agencies, the members of the Interagency Task Force on Forests (ITFF) prepared an Implementation Plan entitled " Interagency Partnership on Forests: Implementation of IPF Proposals for Action by the ITFF".

The ITFF members contributing to the Plan include: the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO); the International Tropical Timber Organization (ITTO); the Secretariat of the Convention on Biological Diversity (CBD); the United Nations Department of Social and Economic Affairs (DESA); the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP); the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP); the World Bank; and the Centre for International Forestry Research (CIFOR)

During IFF I, an informal meeting was organized of the ITFF members, government delegates and NGOs in order to provide an opportunity to raise and respond to questions concerning the Plan. Meetings will be organized between the ITFF and NGOs at future IFF sessions.

The Plan is available on the Website of the IPF:

The IFF: the launching of a new intergovernmental policy
process on forests

On 3 October 1997, governments concluded their negotiations on the programme of work of the Intergovernmental Forum on Forests (IFF), as decided by the 19th special session of the GA in June 1997.

The Forum's work programme will build on the positive results achieved in the Intergovernmental Panel on Forests (IPF) and focus on implementation of the IPF's proposals for action as well as those issues on which international consensus is yet to be achieved.

The Forum has divided its programme of work into three main categories one of which is the identification of possible elements of and work towards consensus on international arrangements and mechanisms, for example, a legally binding instrument on all types of forests. The other Categories are closely linked to this task covering, among others, promotion of the implementation of IPF's proposals for action; monitoring and reporting; finance and technology transfer; trade and environment; underlying causes of deforestation and forest degradation; rehabilitation of forest cover and conservation; traditional forest-related knowledge; valuation of forests; and the use of economic instruments.

The first substantive meeting of the Forum will take place sometime between June and August 1998 in New York or Geneva.

The IFF will submit a progress report to CSD 7 in 1999 and its final report to CSD 8 in the year 2000.

A new website has been created for information related to the IFF. The address is very similar to that of the IPF. Just go to

A new cabin crew? Not exactly

The IFF Secretariat continues to depend on secondments and voluntary contributions, but is otherwise alive and well. It lost Roslan Ismail, who returned to Malaysia at the end of August to be closer to his growing family. The good news is that both Melek Habachy and Susan Fora have decided not to give up yet. The same goes for Jag Maini, Elisabeth Barsk-Rundquist, Jaime Hurtubia and Tage Michaelsen. Milagre Nuvunga is also still with us. The Secretariat has also been fortunate to attract two interns: Senanu Afealete from Ghana and Angela Dobreva from Bulgaria.

What's next on the forests agenda?

The next big event on the international forests agenda is just around the corner. It is the 11th World Forestry Congress, which will be held in Antalya, Turkey, 13-22 October 1997. It will have the theme "Forestry for Sustainable Development: Towards the 21st Century".

The World Forestry Congress is held every six years and usually attracts around 3000 forestry professionals from all over the world. The 10th WFC was held in Paris, France in 1991.

The WFC is organized by the Government of Turkey in collaboration with FAO. The website for the 11th WFC is

Another item on the future forest agenda is collaboration between the IFF and the COP of the Convention on Biological Diversity and their secretariats concerning the preparation of a focused programme on forest biological diversity, as recommended by SBSTTA/CBD in Montreal in September 1997.

For further details, please contact: Mr. Tage Michaelsen, IFF Secretariat, Tel. (212) 963-5294, Fax. (212) 963-3463, E-mail: michaelsen@un.org

* See KIOSK, DPCSD Newsletter, Vol.4, No.2, p.10

Parties to Desertification Convention Tackle Financing

The first session of the Conference of the Parties (COP 1 ) of the United Nations Convention to Combat Desertification (CCD) took place in Rome from 29 September to 10 October, hosted by the Italian government at the headquarters of the Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO).

Over 1,100 participants attended the two-week session which started officially on 30 September with opening speeches by Mr. Nitin Desai, UN-USG for Economic and Social Affairs, the Executive Secretary of the CCD, the Director General of FAO, Secretary General of WMO, the president of IFAD, and representatives from UNDP and UNEP.

Participants included over 700 delegates from 122 governments of which 104 were parties to the CCD (their number has then increased to 113, as of 15 October), 51 ministers and deputy-ministers, UN agencies, IGOs, over 100 representatives of non-governmental organizations (NGOs) and 100 journalists.

The agenda included important decisions for the future of the CCD.

A major achievement was agreement on a new approach for mobilising financial resources to support affected countries in their efforts to combat dryland degradation. This Mechanism is mandated to assure full access to information about multilateral and bilateral sources.

The Parties invited the International Fund for Agricultural Development (IFAD) to house the Mechanism in Rome and to work in close cooperation with the UN Development Programme. Other organizations, including the World Bank, and the African, Asian, and InterAmerican Regional Development Banks will collaborate actively with it.

The Parties also selected Bonn, Germany, to host the CCD Permanent Secretariat as of early 1999. The Interim Secretariat is currently based in Geneva, Switzerland. The Parties then agreed on a 1999 work plan and budget for the Secretariat, as well as on the venue of the next COP, which will take place in Dakar, Senegal, in the second half of 1998.

The Committee on Science and Technology started its work and finalized its operational framework. It set an ambitious work plan in the areas of networking, benchmarks and indicators, collaboration with other scientific bodies and the utilization of traditional knowledge. It chose the United Nations Environment Programme and a consortium of other organisations to carry out the first phase of a survey and evaluation of networking. It designated an international group of experts which will meet before the next session to deal with benchmarks and indicators.

The Conference re-affirmed the far-reaching request for international support to local and national efforts to return the world's drylands to economic and environmental health, in the CCD spirit of "bottom-up" approach and full participation of the affected peoples.

Under item "partnership building", the official agenda included for the first time in UN history open dialogue between governmental delegations and non-governmental organizations on how to increase the effectiveness of programmes to combat desertification.

Meanwhile, a number of side events were held in the margins of the formal meeting. A one-day NGO Forum focused on ways of improving the participation of women and other groups in the struggle against desertification.

A Mayors Forum attended by some 20 local authorities was held at Rome's City Hall. They discussed decentralized cooperation as a way to address desertification and its impact on migrations and urbanization.

A half-day press seminar invited scientists and other experts to discuss desertification causes, impacts, and response options, while an outreach workshop explored ways of boosting public awareness of the issue.

Finally, a comics exhibit presented desertification from the point of view of humour: over 70 drawings were voluntarily contributed by artists from all continents, including Mordillo, Quino, Fontanarrosa, and others. The catalogue of the exhibit, as well as a comic booklet on desertification, are available at the CCD Secretariat.

Current Meetings With DESA Participation

Round-Table on International Cooperation
for Military Industry Restructuring

China, 13 and 14 October 1997

This round-table provides an exchange of views and experiences of China and many other countries in converting from military industry to civilian markets. The meeting focuses on current issues and future prospects for international cooperation for converting the military industry to civilian markets. The meeting is sponsored and organized by UNDP, DESA and the China Association for Peaceful Use of Military Industrial Technology.

For further details, please contact: Mrs. Qian Haiyan, Division for Governance, Public Administration and Finance, Tel. (212) 963-3393, Fax. (212) 963-2916, E-mail: qian@un.org

Expert Group Meeting on Adolescent Girls and their Rights
Addis Ababa, 13-17 October 1997

Critical area of concern: The Girl Child

This EGM organized by the Division for the Advancement of Women, UNICEF, UNFPA, ECA contributes toward a better understanding of the factors affecting the situation of adolescent girls and their rights. It allows consideration of these issues in a broad social, economic and human rights context, and provides a forum for the assessment of progress in implementation of the relevant provisions of the Beijing Platform for Action, and elaboration of action-oriented measures to accelerate the implementation of the Platform.

For further details, please contact: Ms. Dorota Gierycz, Division for the Advancement of Women, Tel. (212) 963-5913, Fax. (212) 963-3463, E-mail: gierycz@un.org or Ms. Koh Miyaoi, Division for the Advancement of Women, Tel. (212) 963-8034, Fax. (212) 963-3463, E-mail: miyaoi@un.org.

Inter-American Congress of Clad
Venezuela, 15-18 October 1997

The II Inter-American Congress of Clad on State and Public Administration Reform will be held in Venezuela. The United Nations Department for Economic and Social Affairs is one of the participating sponsors of the Congress which is being organized by the Latin American Centre for Development Administration.

The Congress will be devoted to exchanging experiences in the area of state reform and modernization of public administration in the Latin American and Caribbean region.

For further details, please contact: Ms. Juanita Bobbitt, Division for Governance, Public Administration and Finance, Tel. (212) 963-8379, Fax. (212) 963-2916, E-mail: bobbitt@un.org

Fourth Expert Group Meeting on Indicators of
Sustainable Development

New York, 23-24 October 1997

The Division for Sustainable Development as coordinator of the CSD Work Programme On Indicators of Sustainable Development have scheduled this meeting to: a) Take stock of developments in the national testing of the indicators and address methodological and other problems encountered; b) Take stock of related indicators programmes, work on aggregation and linkages and; c) Adopt an implementation plan for phase III of the work programme.

For further details, please contact: Mr. Lowell Flanders, Division for Sustainable Development, Tel. (212) 963-8792, Fax. (212) 963-1267, E-mail: flanders@un.org.

High-level meeting on Least Developed Countries
Geneva, 27-28 October 1997

The meeting will be organized by WTO, ITC and UNCTAD as a follow-up activity to the Programme of Action adopted at the first meeting, held in December 1996. OSCAL will attend so as to follow up at Headquarters on the outcome of the meeting.

Gender in Energy Planning
New York, 27-28 October 1997

A staff training workshop on incorporating gender issues in energy projects and planning.

For further details, please contact: Mr. Mohan Peck, Division for Economic and Social Development and Natural Resources Management, Tel. (212) 963-8799, Fax. (212) 963-4340, E-mail: peck@un.org

Meetings of the Global Coalition for Africa (GCA)
Maputo, 31 October - 2 November 1997

The two meetings of the Political Committee and the Policy Forum respectively, will discuss issues of importance to African development at non-governmental level. The Political Committee, which will meet on 31 October, will focus on consolidation of democracy in African countries. In particular, it will discuss the formation, funding and functioning of political parties, elections and electoral systems, and the development of institutions that uphold democracy. The Policy Forum, which will met on 1 - 2 November, will discuss corruption in both domestic and international business transactions, and the measures and strategies, which can be put in place to combat it.

Expert Group Meeting on Gender-based Persecution
Toronto, 9-12 November 1997

Critical area of concern: Women and Armed Conflict

The meeting organized the Division for the Advancement of Women and York University will explore the importance of sensitivity to gender-based persecution, such as sexual violation, in the application of international humanitarian, human rights, and refugee law. It will also analyze the relevance of gender to the work of the Ad Hoc Tribunals for the former Yugoslavia and Rwanda, as well as the work towards the establishment of the International Criminal Court.

For further details, please contact: Ms. Jane Connors, Division for the Advancement of Women, Tel. (212) 963-3162, Fax. (212) 963-3463, E-mail: connorsj@un.org or Ms. Philomena Kintu, Tel. (212) 963-3153, Fax. (212) 963-3463, E-mail: kintu@un.org.

Panel of High-level Personalities on African Development
New York, November 1997

The reconstituted Panel will discuss the role of the United Nations in support of various recent initiatives on Africa

Preparatory Conference of the Second Tokyo International
Conference on African Development (TICAD II)

Tokyo, 10-11 November 1997

The Conference will identify the areas of cooperation that would serve for preparing an Agenda for Action for African development to be prepared in the course of 1998 and adopted at TICAD-II in October 1998, taking into account the New Development Strategy, in the spirit of global partnership. The Conference is co-organized by the Government of Japan, the United Nations (OSCAL, UNDP) and the Global Coalition for Africa (GCA).

Fourth meeting of the Nairobi Group
New York, 10-12 November 1997

The group of experts from international organizations and industrialized and developing countries was established to advance work on environmental and natural resource accounting in 1995. The Group members will discuss the final draft of an operational manual on the system of integrated environmental and economic accounting. The manual is expected to be issued in 1998.

Staff Training Workshop on Innovative financing mechanisms and credit schemes
for the commercialization of renewable energy applications in developing countries
New York, 17 November 1997

For further details, please contact: Mr. Mohan Peck, Division for Economic and Social Development and Natural Resources Management, Tel. (212) 963-8799, Fax. (212) 963-4340, E-mail: peck@un.org

Regional Conference on Public Service in Transition:
Enhancing its Role, Professionalism and Ethical Standards and Values

Greece, 17-20 November 1997

The Conference co-sponsored by the Department of Economic and Social Affairs, UNDP Regional Bureau for Europe and the CIS and the Government of Greece will provide a forum for cross-fertilization of ideas among those responsible for public service management and reform.

For further details, please contact: Ms. Gay Rosenblum-Kumar, Tel. (212) 963-8381, Fax. (212) 963-2916, E-mail: rosenblum-kumar@un.org

UNSD/ECA workshop on environmental statistics, indicators and accounting
Addis Ababa, 17-21 November 1997

The main objectives of the workshop are to generate national awareness of concepts, methods and policy use of environmental statistics and accounting in Africa, and to launch a comprehensive programme of environment statistics in the region.

Ad hoc expert group meeting on regional electricity interconnections
in Arab States organized as a joint programming exercise with ESCWA

Amman, 25-27 November 1997

For further details, please contact: Mr. Mohan Peck, Division for Economic and Social Development and Natural Resources Management, Tel. (212) 963-8799, Fax. (212) 963-4340, E-mail: peck@un.org

Expert Group Meeting on Ageing Women and Care
Valletta, 30 November-2 December 1997

Reliance on women to undertake informal caregiving is an important, yet little-discussed policy issue. An analysis of current policies on family/informal care and their gender perspective impact is therefore timely. The results of this meeting will contribute to the ongoing work of the United Nations on ageing as an input to the International Year of Older Persons. The meeting is organized by the Division for Social Policy and Development (DSPD) and the Division for the Advancement of Women (DAW)

For further details, please contact: Ms. Maria Hartl, Division for the Advancement of Women, Tel. (212) 963-3140, Fax. (212) 963-3463, E-mail: hartl@un.org or Ms. Christina Janssen, Division for the Advancement of Women, Tel. (212) 963-3787, Fax. (212) 963-3463, E-mail: janssenc@un.org.

Expert Group Meeting on Promoting Women's Enjoymen
of their Economic and Social Rights

Abo/Turku, Finland, 1-4 December 1997

Critical area of concern: Human Rights of Women

This EGM will explore the economic and social rights of women and the gender factors that need to be addressed to ensure women's enjoyment of these rights, without discrimination. A limited number of rights will be used as examples. Action-oriented proposals will be developed to promote the full recognition and effective protection, application, implementation and enforcement of the human rights of women in national law as well as national practice. The meeting is organized by the Division for the Advancement of Women and the Institute for Human Rights at Abo Akadmi

For further details, please contact: Ms. Jane Connors, Division for the Advancement of Women, Tel. (212) 963-3162, Fax. (212) 963-3463, E-mail: connorsj@un.org or Ms. Christine Brautigam, Division for the Advancement of Women, Tel. (212) 963-0535, Fax. (212) 963-3463, E-mail: brautigamc@un.org.

Meeting on Cooperation between the United Nations
and the Organization of African Unity

Addis Ababa, 1-5 December 1997

The meeting is co-organized by DPA and OSCAL and will cover political and economic issues. The meeting will be attended by all UN organizations and specialized agencies.

International Conference on Environment and Society:
Education and Public Awareness for Sustainability

Thessaloniki, 8-12 December 1997

The Thessaloniki Conference organized by UNESCO and sponsored by the Government of Greece will have an Issues Forum to address the following six themes: (a) educating for a sustainable future, international consensus as an impetus for action; (b) reorienting formal education towards sustainability; (c) public awareness and understanding: the fuel for change; (d) shifting to sustainable lifestyles: changing consumption and production patterns; (e) investing in education: contributing to a sustainable economy; and (f) ethics, culture and equity in achieving sustainability.

In addition, there will be an Innovative Practices Forum, poster sessions and an exhibition. Staff of the Division for Sustainable Development will attend.

For further details, please contact: Ms. Jeanne Damlamian, UNESCO, by fax: (33-1) 4568-5635; or E-mail: j.damlamian@unesco.org.

High-level Meeting on Advancing Financial Intermediation
Port Louis, 9-11 December 1997

The objective of the meeting is to provide an opportunity for African countries to exchange experiences with Asian countries in improving financial intermediation, with special emphasis on increasing deposit mobilization, sound banking management and improving the intermediation role of the informal financial sector. The meeting is organized by OSCAL in cooperation with ECA, ADB, the World Bank and IMF.

Regional consultative workshop on the provision of sustainable energy
services to rural areas, organized in collaboration with ESCAP.

Bangkok, 15-17 December 1997

For further details, please contact: Mr. Mohan Peck, Division for Economic and Social Development and Natural Resources Management, Tel. (212) 963-8799, Fax. (212) 963-4340, E-mail: peck@un.org

African Regional Forum on Renewable Energies
Bamako, 15-19 December 1997

The Seminar is organized by UNESCO and is intended to provide inputs for the formulation of a regional programme on solar energy, to be supported by Africa's development partners. OSCAL is invited to make a statement at the opening ceremony of the Forum, which will be presided over by the President of the Republic of Mali.

Eighth meeting of the Ad Hoc Group of Experts on International
Cooperation in Tax Matters
Geneva, 15-19 December 1997

This biennial meeting will be devoted to updating two reports on tax issues as well as focusing its discussions on new financial instruments; transfer pricing; and tax havens, with special reference to the exchange of information.

For further details, please contact: Mr. Abdelhamid Bouab, Division for Governance, Public Administration and Finance, Tel. (212) 963-8406, Fax. (212) 963-2916, E-mail: bouab@un.org


Since the publication of the 1993 System of National Accounts, the Statistics Division has supported the implementation of the system at the individual country level through a number of publications. The following handbooks and technical reports will be submitted for publication before the end of 1997:

Handbook of Input-Output Table Compilation and Analysis

Input-Output tables are an essential part of the national accounting framework. They permit to describe the production process and the product flow in a national economy and serve various analytical purposes. They are therefore compiled at regular intervals by many countries. This handbook describes both the analytical foundations of the Input-Output Analysis and the compilation method for an Input-Output Table. It also presents some application of I-O analysis, for instance for calculating green GDP.

For further details, please contact: Mr. Viet Vu, Statistics Division, Tel. (212) 963-4862, Fax. (212) 963-1374, E-mail: vuv@un.org

Handbook on links between business and national accounts

Besides the Input-Output Framework, institutional sector accounts are the other pillar of the overall national accounting framework. They describe the economic transactions of institutional units in their entirety. This handbook is concerned with the compilation of the accounts for non-financial corporations. This is done using the business accounts presented by private and public corporations as a data source. The handbook discusses selected technical issues related to the conversion of business accounts to national accounts and reflects some country experiences.

For further details, please contact: Mr. Viet Vu, Statistics Division, Tel. (212) 963-4862, Fax. (212) 963-1374, E-mail: vuv@un.org

Technical report on Household satellite accounts

Constructing the accounts for the household sector is the most challenging element in the implementation of the full national accounting framework: Because of the many micro-units, a variety of sources need to be used, such as household income and expenditure surveys, labour force surveys, micro-enterprise surveys etc. The household sector is one of the key sectors as it represents the nexus between many economic and social phenomena. The technical report will highlight conceptual issues and share country experiences with regard to the compilation of household satellite accounts.

For further details, please contact: Mr. Bernd Becker, Statistics Division, Tel. (212) 963-4861, Fax. (212) 963-1374, E-mail: beckerb@un.org

Technical report on a national accounts compilation methodology

The national accounting framework with its set of internally consistent key analytical figures is the end product of a long transformation process of a multitude of micro-data into a set of internally consistent macro-economic aggregates. The Technical report discusses how the various compilation steps of pre-aggregation, conversion to national accounts format and reconciliation can be systematized. This is essential in order to computerize the national accounts compilation process. In addition to theoretical process models the reports presents the Statistical Divisions's experience in country projects.

For further details, please contact: Mr. Jan Van Tongeren, Statistics Division, Tel. (212) 963-4859, Fax. (212) 963-1374, E-mail: vantongeren@un.org

Other forthcoming statistical publications include: 1995 Energy Statistics Yearbook

A comprehensive source of annual data on energy use and trends will be issued soon by the Statistics Division. Energy statistics for 215 countries and areas in the world are given in this thirty-ninth issue covering the period 1992 through 1995. Included are data on production, trade and consumption of solid, liquid and gaseous fuels and electricity.

Industrial Commodity Statistics Yearbook, 1995 edition

The twenty-ninth edition of this annual compilation provides statistics on the production of about 550 industrial commodities for approximately 200 countries or areas and the regional and grand totals for most of the statistical series. An index of commodities in alphabetical order, a table of correspondence between the ISIC-based commodity codes, the SITC and Harmonized Commodity Description and Coding System (HS) are shown in the annexes of the Yearbook.

Public Administration

Guidelines for Improving Tax Administration

Guidelines provide a practical source of guidance and feasible approaches to the resolution of issues and problems involved in tax evasion and tax avoidance. Guidelines include reforming the structural organization of tax administration, enhancing the performance of support functions of the tax administration, as well as a discussion of taxpayer education, information and assistance.

Enterprise Management in Transitional Economies

Comprehensive report on enterprise management in transitional economies with particular reference to East and Central European countries and least developed countries. Subjects include government policies, financial services, technological facilities, marketing information and human resources development for enhancing enterprise management.

Just Published

Africa Advocacy Forum: Microcredit and Poverty Eradication, Report of a One-day Briefing

The publication, which is bilingual (English and French) under one cover, gives a brief account of a one-day Forum, held at the United Nations in New York by OSCAL on 6 February 1997, immediately after the Microcredit Summit held at Washington, D.C. The Forum provided an opportunity for African practitioners, representatives of United Nations agencies and non-governmental organizations to exchange views on practical measures for poverty eradication in Africa. The Forum specifically focused on how microcredit could be utilized as an essential instrument for poverty eradication in Africa. In this context, the participants discussed such issues as the impact of microcredit on food security, women's economic empowerment, provision of basic social services, employment/self employment, and traditional banking systems.

Other entities that cooperated in the holding of the Forum were the Division for the Advancement of Women, the Division for Social Policy and Development, UNDP, UNICEF, FAO, UNIFEM, UNFPA, the United Nations Capital Development Fund and the Friedrich Ebert Foundation. The publication contains an extract of the statement made by the Secretary-General at the Microcredit Summit.

For further details, please contact: Ms. Ruth Engo, Office of the Special Coordinator for Africa and Least Developed Countries, Tel.(212) 963-4780, Fax. (212) 963-3892, E-mail: engo@n.org

"Women 2000: Women and Decision-Making"

The Division for the Advancement of Women announces the issuance of its publication Women 2000. This issue, entitled "Women and decision-making", examines women's power and influence from various angles, including the extent to which women decision-makers bring new styles and approaches to bear. The publication, available from the Division, will also be available on the Division's homepage. The previous issue "Women and the information revolution", is also available at the DAW website http://www.un.org/dpcsd/daw.

For further details, please contact: Ms. Abigail Loregnard-Kasmally, Tel. (212) 963-3137, Fax. (212) 963-3463, E-mail: loregnard-kasmally@un.org.

The Home Page

Sustainable Development

The Division for Sustainable Development of the UN Department of Economic and Social Affairs is pleased to announce the launching of the UN System-Wide Web Site: http://www.unsystem.org/agenda21/

This Web Site contains country- and issue-specific information on sustainable development worldwide, with hyperlinks to relevant web sites throughout the United Nations System, the Secretariats of Conventions and official web sites of national Governments.

As of 12 September, information on the following countries is available: Argentina, Austria, Bangladesh, Barbados, Denmark, Brazil, Costa Rica, Ecuador, Estonia, Haiti, Japan, Lebanon, Malaysia, Mauritius, Mexico, Mongolia, Morocco, Nepal, New Zealand, Pakistan, Panama, Paraguay, Republic of Korea, Republic of Moldova, Romania, Russian Federation, Singapore, the Syrian Arab Republic, Uganda, the United States, and Uruguay.

Additional countries are being added, and it is expected that approximately one hundred countries will be available on this UN System-wide Sustainable Development Web Site, with hyperlinks, by the end of 1997.

Information contained on the Web Site will be updated on a continuous basis, as it becomes available.

For further details, please contact: Ms. Mary Pat Silveira, Division for Sustainable Development, Tel. (212) 963-8428, Fax. (212) 963-1267, E-mail: silveira@un.org