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CONCLUDING REMARKS BY

H.E. SHEIKHA HAYA RASHED AL KHALIFA
THE PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED NATIONS GENERAL ASSEMBLY

AT THE

DEBATE ON THE RECOMMENDATIONS OF THE HIGH LEVEL PANEL ON SYSTEM-WIDE COHERENCE OF UNITED NATIONS OPERATIONAL ACTIVITIES

UNITED NATIONS HEADQUARTERS
NEW YORK, NEW YORK
17 APRIL 2007

Excellencies,
Ladies and Gentlemen,

I would like to express my appreciation to all the speakers that contributed to an excellent opening discussion, both today and yesterday, on the coherence of United Nations development, humanitarian and environmental operations.

It is very encouraging, that on such an important and far-reaching matter for the United Nations system, and the international standing of its development activities, that such a wide variety of many member states with different interests and perspectives took the floor, including at the Ministerial level.

We heard encouraging remarks from a number of pilot countries that the process of reform at the country level is expected to produce results.

Excellencies,
Distinguished Delegates,

I would like to thank the Secretary-General for his welcome contribution and the leadership he has demonstrated on this issue. I shall continue to work closely with him, and the Deputy-Secretary General during the forthcoming consultation process with Member States.

Building on his letter and his report on the recommendations in the High Level Panel, the Secretary-General has reaffirmed his broad support for the Report, and the need to take urgent steps to improve the coherence and effectiveness of UN operational activities.

I should underline that, as President of the 61st session of the General Assembly, I will continue to be open to the views of all Member States on both the substance and process going forward.

We are at the beginning of a formal consultations process that will be transparent, inclusive and open to all constructive contributions.

I will draw on your comments during this debate and will further consult Member States. In due course, I will revert to you with my proposals on the best way to consider the recommendations in the Report and those of the Secretary-General in a pragmatic, flexible and results orientated manner.

The consultation process must enable to achieve the broadest possible agreement on how to strengthen the United Nations role in development. Our approach must carefully consider and build on the Panel's recommendations.

Excellencies,
Distinguished Delegates,

I appeal to all of you to work together constructively on this issue so that we can reach a conclusion with a reasonable timeframe. We must not loose sight of the fact that we all have an interest in a more effective United Nations.

A United Nations that must strengthen itself so that it can address new global challenges and, the diverse demands of member states development priorities.

Given the importance of this issue to many member states I urge you to approach this matter pragmatically and with a degree of flexibility.

The plenary is now adjourned.