High-Level Thematic Debate on Strengthening cooperation between the United Nations and regional and sub-regional organizations

New York – 4 May 2015

Strengthening cooperation between the United Nations and regional and sub-regional organizations - 4 May 2015Introduction

The High-level Thematic Debate on Strengthening cooperation between the United Nations and regional and sub-regional organizations was an occasion to reflect on the strides made and opportunities ahead. Cooperation between the UN and regional and sub-regional organizations remains a cornerstone of the work of the UN. Regional and sub-regional organizations continue to play pivotal roles in the areas of peace and security, human rights and development. Over the years, cooperation between the United Nations and regional and sub-regional organizations has intensified.

The UN Conference on Sustainable Development (Rio+20) Outcome document entitled “The Future We Want”,  emphasizes that regional and sub-regional organizations “have a significant role to play in promoting a balanced integration of the economic, social and environmental dimensions of sustainable development in their respective regions”. It underscored the need to support these institutions, including through the UN system, in supporting sustainable development. The regional and sub-regional organizations were also urged to prioritize sustainable development through, inter alia, implementation of regional agreements and arrangements, exchange of information, best practices, and lessons learnt.

As Member States and stakeholders formulate the post-2015 development agenda, regional and sub-regional organizations have an important contribution to make including in its implementation.

Objective

The main objective of the High-Level thematic debate was to provide a platform for participants to exchange views on:

  1. What concrete measures can be taken to build and strengthen strategic partnerships between the UN and regional and sub-regional organizations?
  2. What needs to be done to strengthen mechanisms to promote common understanding and effective coordination across a range of issues including conflict prevention and mediation?
  3. How can regional and sub-regional organizations secure human, logistical and financing in a predictable and sustainable manner?
  4. How to galvanize international support towards building the capacities of regional and sub-regional organizations in conflict prevention and resolution, peacemaking, peacebuilding and development?
  5. What actions need to be taken to foster cooperation and experience-sharing amongst the regional and sub-regional organizations, especially in the areas of mediation and peaceful settlement of disputes?
  6. How can regional and sub-regional organizations be engaged and mobilized to play an effective role in the implementation of a transformative post-2015 development agenda?

Format and Outcome and Participants

The High-level Thematic Debate consisted of an opening, keynote address, high-level plenary, and two consecutive interactive panels in the afternoon. One Panel discussed “Strengthening the strategic relationship between the UN and regional and sub-regional organizations in the areas of peace, stability and human rights”. The second panel discussed “Galvanizing support of regional and sub-regional organizations for the implementation of a transformative post-2015 development agenda”. The Outcome will be a negotiated Declaration.

Member States were invited to participate at the highest possible level. Representatives of UN Agencies, regional and sub-regional organizations and other relevant stakeholders were also invited to attend.

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