GENERAL ASSEMBLY DECIDES TO CONVENE TWO-DAY RESUMED SESSION OF ECONOMIC AND FINANCIAL COMMITTEE TO ADDRESS 'FINANCING FOR DEVELOPMENT'

18 December 1997
GA/9387

GENERAL ASSEMBLY DECIDES TO CONVENE TWO-DAY RESUMED SESSION OF ECONOMIC AND FINANCIAL COMMITTEE TO ADDRESS 'FINANCING FOR DEVELOPMENT'

18 December 1997

Press ReleaseGA/9387

GENERAL ASSEMBLY DECIDES TO CONVENE TWO-DAY RESUMED SESSION OF ECONOMIC AND FINANCIAL COMMITTEE TO ADDRESS 'FINANCING FOR DEVELOPMENT'

19971218 Adopts 43 Proposals Recommended by Second Committee; Reaches Agreement on Reference to 'Economic Growth'; Acts on El Niño

Acting on reports of its Second Committee (Economic and Financial) this afternoon, the General Assembly adopted without a vote six resolutions previously approved by recorded votes, after those texts were orally revised so that the phrase "sustained economic growth and sustainable development" was followed by "in accordance with relevant resolutions of the General Assembly and recent United Nations conferences" -- the wording adopted in a resolution on the medium-term plan (51/219). The six texts were among a total of 43 proposals adopted on the Committee's recommendation, two by recorded votes.

The Chairman of the Second Committee introduced the amendments to the six texts. The resolutions concerned industrial development, human resources development, women in development, renewal of the dialogue for development through partnership, external debt problem of developing countries, and global financial flows and their impact on developing countries.

In a related action, the Assembly adopted a text on business and development, introduced and sponsored by Venezuela, which called on the United Nations funds and programmes to strengthen support for the promotion of entrepreneurship and to give due consideration to the role of the private sector in development. At its last meeting, the Second Committee adopted a motion not to take action on that resolution.

By the provisions of the six orally amended texts, the Assembly:

-- Requested its President to consult with Member States in order to decide the modalities, focus of the discussions and timing of the first two-day high-level development dialogue on the theme of social and economic impact of globalization and interdependence, to be held during the Assembly's fifty-third session;

-- Called on the United Nations system to support developing countries to integrate gender concerns into national programmes and to implement those programmes;

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-- Called on the United Nations system to support national and regional human resources development and capacity-building, both among themselves and with other development partners;

-- Requested the Secretary-General, in close cooperation with the Bretton Woods institutions and the United Nations Conference on Trade and Development (UNCTAD), to analyse the current trends in global financial flows;

-- Called on the international community and invited the Bretton Woods institutions and the private sector to implement the agreements and decisions on external debt agreed to at major United Nations conferences and summits; and

-- Called on all Member States to support the implementation of the programme for the Industrial Development Decade for Africa and the Plan of Action for the Alliance for Africa's Industrialization, taking into account the results of the mid-term review of the Decade.

By another text adopted, the Assembly decided to convene a two-day resumed session of the Second Committee to solicit views from governments on required inputs from a broad range of stakeholders on key elements which might be included in the consideration of the theme of "financing for development". It decided to create an ad hoc open-ended working group during its fifty-third session to formulate a report containing recommendations for a high-level international intergovernmental consideration of that topic. It further decided to consider at its fifty-fourth session the convening of a summit, an international conference, a special session or other appropriate high-level forum on financing for development to further the global partnerships for development, not later than the year 2001.

Acting on environment and sustainable development, the Assembly called on the United Nations system to contribute further to a comprehensive approach and study of the El Niño phenomenon, and to intensify its cooperation with the regions affected by the phenomenon, especially developing countries, small island States and landlocked countries. The Secretary-General was requested to facilitate an international strategy for the prevention, mitigation and rehabilitation of the damages caused by El Niño.

By another resolution, the Assembly decided to convene a three-day special session from 30 June to 2 July 1999 to review and appraise the implementation of the Programme of Action adopted by the International Conference on Population and Development (Cairo, September 1994). It also decided that the Commission on Population and Development should serve as the preparatory body for the final preparations for the special session.

The Assembly also decided to hold a special session in the year 2001 for an overall review and appraisal of the implementation of the outcome of the second United Nations Conference on Human Settlements (Habitat II) (Istanbul,

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June 1996). It requested the Secretary-General to address the serious management and financial situation at the United Nations Centre for Human Settlements in order to meet its responsibilities in implementing the Habitat Agenda.

By a related text on the Global Strategy for Shelter to the Year 2000, the Assembly adopted the Plan of Action for the Strategy for the period 1998- 1999, and urged governments and organizations to prepare and implement their specific plans of action.

In adopting a six-part text on the follow-up to Habitat II and the future role of the Commission on Human Settlements, the Assembly decided that the Commission shall assist the Economic and Social Council in monitoring, reviewing and assessing the progress made in the implementation of the Habitat Agenda.

By a four-part resolution on international trade and development, the Assembly requested UNCTAD to continue to identify and analyse the implications for development of issues relevant to investment, taking into account the interests of developing countries. The need for increased and more effective participation by developing countries in rule-making and standard-setting activities in the context of the international trading system was stressed.

In a related text, the Assembly requested the Secretary-General to convene in 1999 a meeting of governmental experts from landlocked and transit developing countries and representatives of donor countries and financial and development institutions to explore the possibility of formulating action- oriented measures. It called on both the landlocked developing countries and their transit neighbours to improve the transit transport infrastructure facilities and bilateral and subregional agreements; develop joint ventures in transit transport; and strengthen institutions and human resources dealing with transit transport.

The Assembly also stressed the need to strengthen the role of the United Nations in the field of science and technology, particularly through policy guidance and better coordination. It urged that international cooperation efforts be intensified and strengthened towards developing countries' endogenous capacity-building in science and technology, including their capacity to utilize, modify and adapt foreign scientific and technological products to suit local conditions.

By another text, the Assembly requested the Secretary-General, when presenting his report on the triennial policy review of operational activities for development to its fifty-third session, to consider the implications of steps adopted by the United Nations system to implement reform initiatives on operational activities, and to make recommendations for their implementation.

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By other texts related to development activities, the Assembly decided to hold a one-day commemorative meeting during its fifty-third session to mark the twentieth anniversary of the adoption of the Buenos Aires Plan of Action for Promoting and Implementing Technical Cooperation among Developing Countries. It requested the Secretary-General to ensure that UNCTAD had the capacity to complement the work of the Department of Economic and Social Affairs in implementing the Programme of Action of the Global Conference on the Sustainable Development of Small Island Developing States, and invited all actors to support the Department's work to refine the vulnerability index for small island developing States.

In other actions under environment and sustainable development, the Assembly:

-- Decided to include in the calendar of conferences and meetings for the biennium 1998-1999 the sessions of the Conferences of the Parties to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change;

-- Requested the Secretary-General to authorize the interim secretariat of the Convention to Combat Desertification to act as the secretariat for the transition period following the first session of the Conference of the Parties until the permanent secretariat begins operating at Bonn by 1 January 1999; and -- Called on States Parties to the Convention on Biological Diversity to settle their arrears and to pay their contributions to ensure continuity in the cash flow required to finance the ongoing work of the Conference of the Parties to that treaty.

In two decisions related to the United Nations Conference on Environment and Development (UNCED), the Assembly:

-- Decided to include in the provisional agenda of its fifty-third session, under the item entitled "Environment and sustainable development", a sub-item entitled "Implementation and follow-up to the outcome of the UNCED, including the outcome of the nineteenth special session of the Assembly for the purpose of an overall review and appraisal of the implementation of Agenda 21"; and

-- Decided to continue to review the progress made in implementing the conventions signed at UNCED or as a result of it, as well as other conventions related to sustainable development.

In two other texts adopted by recorded vote, the Assembly:

-- Reaffirmed the inalienable rights of the Palestinian people and the population of the occupied Syrian Golan over their natural resources, including land and water, and called on Israel not to exploit or endanger the natural resources in the occupied Palestinian territory, including Jerusalem,

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and other Arab territories occupied since 1967 -- 137 in favour to 2 (Israel, United States) against, with 14 abstentions (See Annex II for details of the voting.); and

-- Urged the international community to adopt measures to eliminate the use of unilateral coercive economic measures against developing countries, that were not authorized by the United Nations or inconsistent with the Charter of the United Nations -- 109 in favour to 1 against (United States), with 50 abstentions. (See Annex II.)

Under another resolution, the Assembly urged Member States and the United Nations system to strengthen international cooperation in the area of international migration and development in order to address the root causes of migration and requested the Secretary-General to submit to the Assembly's fifty-fourth session a report recommending ways and means to address the problems related to migration and development, including the possibility of convening an international conference on international migration and development.

Following up on the first United Nations Decade for the Eradication of Poverty (1997-2006), the Assembly called on all donors to give priority to poverty eradication and invited the United Nations system to support developing countries, particularly African countries and the least developed countries, in eradicating poverty and ensuring basic social services.

In a related text, the Assembly called on the international donor community to strengthen existing emerging microcredit institutions in the developing countries, especially the least developed and the African countries. It encouraged all involved in poverty eradication programmes to consider incorporating microcredit schemes in their strategies.

By another resolution concerning the development of Africa, the Assembly called on the Member States and agencies of the United Nations system that had not yet established contact and relationships with the Southern African Development Community (SADC) to do so.

In other actions, the Assembly:

-- Decided to convene the Third United Nations Conference on the Least Developed Countries at a high level in the year 2001;

-- Appealed to governments and to private institutions to contribute financial and other resources to the United Nations Institute for Training and Research (UNITAR);

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-- Invited Member States, the United Nations system, and non-governmental organizations to integrate cultural factors into their development programmes and projects, in order to ensure sustainable development that respects cultural diversity; -- Decided to postpone consideration of the graduation of Vanuatu from the list of the least developed countries;

-- Decided that Cape Verde, Maldives and Samoa should graduate from the list of least developed countries at the time of the next review, in 2000, provided that they continue to meet the criteria for graduation at that time; and

-- Approved the biennial programme of work of the Second Committee for 1998-1999.

Assembly Work Programme

The General Assembly met this afternoon to consider the reports of its Second Committee (Economic and Financial). The reports concern the following topics: financing of development; trade and development; science and technology for development; external debt crisis and development; industrial development cooperation; business and development; sustainable development and international economic cooperation; environment and sustainable development; operational activities for development; training and research; report of the Economic and Social Council; and permanent sovereignty of the Palestinian people in the occupied territory, including Jerusalem, and of the Arab population in the occupied Syrian Golan over their natural resources.

The Committee's report on "macroeconomic policy questions" (document A/52/626) is submitted in five parts.

Part II of the report (document A/52/626/Add.1) contains two draft resolutions.

Draft resolution I, titled "global partnership for development: high- level international intergovernmental consideration on financing for development, approved without a vote on 5 December, would have the Assembly decide to convene for two days a resumed session of the Second Committee in order to solicit the views of Governments on the inputs required from a broad range of stakeholders, including actors both within and outside the United Nations system, as well as views on key elements that might be included in the consideration of the topic of financing for development, and to identify potential sources of such inputs. The need to take stock of efforts within and outside the United Nations system on financing for development would be stressed. The Assembly would further decide to consider at its fifty-fourth session the convening of a summit, an international conference, a special session of the General Assembly or other appropriate high-level international intergovernmental forum on financing for development to further the global partnership for development, not later than the year 2001.

Draft resolution II, on global financial flows and their impact on the developing countries -- approved on 9 December by a vote of 147 in favour to 2 against (Israel, United States), with no abstentions -- would have the Assembly request the Secretary-General, in close cooperation with the Bretton Woods institutions and the United Nations Conference on Trade and Development (UNCTAD), to analyze the current trends in global financial flows. He would also be requested to make recommendations in the World Economic and Social Survey, 1998 and the Trade and Development Report, 1998 on how to address the volatility of those flows, including measures to help economies become more resilient to currency fluctuations. The International Monetary Fund (IMF) would be invited to ensure an orderly and flexible promotion of capital account liberalization to suit the circumstances of each individual country. It would be stressed that sound domestic macroeconomic policies -- promoting

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macroeconomic stability and growth -- were vital to private capital flows, and that the coordination of macroeconomic policies and a favourable international economic environment were important. Further stressed would be the need for international cooperation to prevent future currency crises. The text's preambular notes that all countries should continue their efforts to promote sustained economic growth and sustainable development.

The report's part III, on "trade and development", contains three draft resolutions (document A/52/626/Add.2).

Draft resolution I, on unilateral economic measures as a means of political and economic coercion against developing countries, was approved on 4 December by a recorded vote of 86 in favour to 1 against (United States), with 45 abstentions. Under its provisions, the Assembly would reaffirm that no State could use or encourage the use of unilateral economic, political or any other type of measures to coerce another State to obtain from it the subordination of the exercise of its sovereign rights. It would urge the international community to eliminate the use of unilateral coercive economic measures against developing countries that were not authorized by the United Nations or were inconsistent with the Charter of the United Nations. The Secretary-General would be requested to monitor the imposition of coercive economic measures and to study their impact on the affected countries.

The four-part draft resolution II, on international trade and development, was approved without a vote on 5 December. By the provisions of part I of the draft text, the Assembly would request UNCTAD to identify and analyze the impact of investment on development, taking into account the interests of developing countries. The UNCTAD would also be invited to follow developments in the international trading system, in particular their implications for developing countries, to identify new opportunities from the implementation of the Uruguay Round agreements and to assist developing countries to participate effectively in multilateral trade negotiations. By part II of the draft, the Assembly would deplore any attempt to bypass or undermine multilaterally agreed procedures on the conduct of international trade by resorting to unilateral actions over and above those agreed to in the Uruguay Round. It would affirm that environmental and social concerns should not be used for protectionist purposes.

Part III of the text would have the Assembly encourage UNCTAD to continue to promote the integration of trade, environment and development by examining trade and environment issues from a development perspective in cooperation with relevant international organizations. Part IV would have the Assembly request governments, the United Nations system, intergovernmental and non-governmental organizations to take concrete measures to implement the United Nations New Agenda for the Development of Africa in the 1990s, including the measures and recommendations agreed upon at its mid-term review, especially those related to trade and development.

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Draft resolution III concerns specific actions related to the particular needs and problems of landlocked developing countries and was approved without a vote on 5 December. By its provisions, the Assembly would request the Secretary-General to convene in 1999, within the overall level of resources for the biennium 1998-1999, a meeting of governmental experts from landlocked and transit developing countries, and representatives of donor countries and financial and development institutions to review progress in the development of transit systems. It would call on both the landlocked developing countries and their transit neighbours to improve the transit transport infrastructure and their bilateral and subregional agreements; to develop joint ventures in transit transport; and to strengthen transit transport institutions and human resources.

Part IV of the report (document A/52/626/Add.3) contains one draft resolution on science and technology for development, which was approved on 5 December without a vote. That text would have the Assembly reaffirm that capacity-building in science and technology in developing countries should remain a priority on the United Nations agenda. The Assembly would urge that international cooperation be intensified and strengthened towards developing countries' endogenous capacity-building in science and technology, including their capacity to utilize, modify and adapt foreign scientific and technological products to suit local conditions.

Part V of the report (document A/52/626/Add.4) contains a draft resolution on enhancing international cooperation towards a durable solution to the external debt problem of developing countries, which was approved on 9 December by a vote of 150 in favour to 1 against (United States), with 1 abstention (Romania). [The report states that the delegation of Romania subsequently indicated that it had intended to vote in favour of the draft, but its vote had been recorded as an abstention.]

Under the draft's provisions, the Assembly would recognize that effective, equitable, development-oriented and durable solutions to the external debt and debt-servicing problems of developing countries can contribute substantially to the strengthening of the global economy and to the efforts of developing countries to achieve sustained economic growth and sustainable development. It would call on the international community and the private sector to implement agreements and decisions on external debt taken at the major United Nations conferences and summits organized since the beginning of the 1990s on development. It would stress the importance of implementing the eligibility criteria of the Heavily Indebted Poor Countries Debt Initiative in a flexible and transparent manner and with the full involvement of the debtor country. The continuous evaluation and monitoring of the existing terms of the eligibility criteria would be emphasized.

In addition, the Assembly would invite creditor countries, private banks and multilateral financial institutions to address the commercial debt problems of the least developed countries and to mobilize resources through

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the debt-reduction facility of the International Development Association (IDA) for eligible least developed countries. It would stress the need for new financial flows to debtor developing countries from all sources, and urge creditor countries and multilateral financial institutions to extend concessional financial assistance, particularly to the least developed countries, to support the implementation of economic reforms and structural adjustment programmes.

The Second Committee report on "sustainable development and international economic cooperation" (document A/52/628) contains 10 parts.

Part II of the report (document A/52/628/Add.1) contains one draft resolution on renewal of the dialogue on strengthening international economic cooperation for development through partnership, which was approved on 9 December by a vote of 151 in favour to 2 against (Israel, United States), with no abstentions. Under its provisions, the Assembly would reaffirm the continued need to strengthen constructive dialogue and genuine partnership to promote further international economic cooperation for development, and also reaffirm that such a dialogue should be conducted in response to the imperatives of mutual interests and benefits, genuine interdependence, shared responsibility and the partnership for achieving sustained economic growth and sustainable development. The President of the General Assembly would be requested to consult with Member States on the modalities, focus of the discussions and date of the first two-day high-level dialogue on the social and economic impact of globalization and interdependence and their policy implications to be held during the Assembly's next regular session.

The report's part III (document A/52/628/Add.2) contains one draft resolution on the implementation of the Programme of Action for the Least Developed Countries for the 1990s, which was approved without a vote on 5 December. By its provisions, the Assembly would decide to convene the Third High-Level United Nations Conference on the Least Developed Countries in the year 2001. It would decide to convene an intergovernmental preparatory committee for the Conference, preceded by three expert-level preparatory meetings. It would also decide to include in the provisional agenda of its fifty-third session an item entitled "Implementation of the Programme of Action for the Least Developed Countries for the 1990s" and consider the date, duration and venue of the Conference, its preparatory process and funding from extrabudgetary resources. It would also decide that UNCTAD be the focal point for the preparation of the Conference.

A draft resolution contained in the report's part IV (document A/52/628/Add.3) concerns population and development and was approved without a vote on 5 December. That text would have the Assembly decide to convene a three-day special session from 30 June to 2 July 1999 to review and appraise the implementation of the Programme of Action of the International Conference on Population and Development (Cairo, September 1994). It would also decide that the Commission on Population and Development should serve as the

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preparatory body for the special session; and that the thirty-second session of the Commission shall be open-ended to allow the full participation of all States. Non-United Nations Member States which are members of specialized agencies would be invited to participate in the special session as observers.

Part V of the report (document A/52/628/Add.4) contains a draft resolution on international migration and development, which was approved without a vote on 2 December. By its provisions, the Assembly would call upon the international community to make the option of remaining in one's country viable for all people by ensuring a better economic balance between developed and developing countries. It would also call on the United Nations system and other organizations to address the issue of international migration and development and to support interregional, regional and subregional processes and activities on international migration and development. It would decide to include in the provisional agenda of its fifty-fourth session the item entitled "International migration and development, including the convening of a United Nations conference on international migration and development to address migration issues".

Part VI of the report (document A/52/628/Add.5) contains three draft resolutions, all approved without a vote on 5 December.

Draft resolution I, on implementation of the outcome of the second United Nations Conference on Human Settlements (Habitat II) (Istanbul, June 1996) would have the Assembly decide to hold a special session in the year 2001 for an overall review and appraisal of the implementation of the outcome of Habitat II, the modalities of which would be decided on at the fifty-third session. The Secretary-General would be requested to address the serious management and financial situation at the United Nations Centre for Human Settlements to enable it to play its part in the implementation of the Habitat Agenda. It would urge governments, the United Nations system and others concerned with human settlements and urban management to implement the Habitat Agenda.

Draft resolution II, on the Global Strategy for Shelter to the Year 2000, would have the Assembly adopt the Plan of Action for the Global Strategy for Shelter to the Year for the biennium 1998-1999, and urge governments, relevant United Nations and private sector organizations and intergovernmental and non-governmental organizations to prepare and implement their specific plans of action. Governments would also be urged, in implementing their national plans of action, to strengthen integrated national shelter strategies based on sustainable development. Organizations of the United Nations system, particularly the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP), and other multilateral agencies would be urged to provide increased financial and other support to governments for achieving the objective of adequate shelter for all.

The six-part draft resolution III, on follow-up to Habitat II and the

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future role of the Commission on Human Settlements, would have, in part I, the Assembly reaffirm that the Commission on Human Settlements, as a standing committee of the Economic and Social Council, should have a central role in monitoring, within the United Nations system, the implementation of the Habitat Agenda and advising the Council thereon. In view of the importance of non-governmental organizations, local authorities, the private sector and research organizations in the promotion of human settlements development, it would also decide that such organizations should be encouraged to participate in the work of the Commission.

By part II, on terms of reference, the Assembly would further decide that the Commission, in fulfilling its mandate, shall assist the Council in monitoring, reviewing and assessing the progress made in the implementation of the Habitat Agenda, among other measures, through the analysis of relevant inputs from governments, local authorities and their associations, relevant non-governmental organizations and the private sector.

Under part III, addressing structure of the agenda and work programme of the Commission, the Assembly would urge the Commission to adopt a multi-year work programme for a focused and thematic approach, which would provide a framework to assess the progress achieved in the implementation of the Habitat Agenda and would be in line with the coordinated follow-up to conferences, culminating in an overall review and appraisal of the Habitat Agenda in the year 2001. Part IV, on documentation, would have the Assembly request that all United Nations documentation be kept concise, clear, analytical and timely, and that to the greatest extent possible, use be made of integrated reporting. Part V, addressing methods of work of the Commission, would have the Assembly recognize that those methods should be revitalized in order to improve that body's profile and attract high-level political participation. Part VI, on the secretariat, would have the Assembly urge the Secretary- General to ensure the effective functioning of the Centre for Human Settlements and request the Executive Director of the Centre to submit to the Commission on Human Settlements at a future session a detailed report on the activities of regional offices, paying special attention to the status of implementation of the Habitat Agenda in each region.

Part VII of the report (document A/52/628/Add.6) contains two draft resolutions.

Draft resolution I on the First United Nations Decade for the Eradication of Poverty, approved on 2 December without a vote, would have the Assembly call on all donors to give priority to the eradication of poverty in their budgets and programmes, on both bilateral and multilateral bases. It would also invite the United Nations system to support developing countries, particularly African countries and the least developed countries, in their efforts to eradicate poverty and ensure basic social services. The Assembly would also invite the Executive Board of the UNDP to consider extending projects under the rubric "Poverty Strategies Initiative" to all developing

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countries. The Assembly would invite the international community, including multilateral financial institutions, to implement all debt relief initiatives for developing countries -- including the Naples terms and the Heavily Indebted Poor Countries Debt Initiative -- and to contribute to a durable solution to the debt problem of developing countries. Donors would be encouraged to ensure adequate financing of those mechanisms and/or initiatives, particularly in African countries and the least developed countries, and thus support their efforts to eradicate poverty.

Draft resolution II on the role of microcredit in the eradication of poverty, approved on 5 December without a vote, would have the Assembly encourage all those involved in poverty eradication programmes to consider incorporating microcredit schemes in their strategies and support the development of microcredit institutions and their capacities, so that credit and related services may be made available to increasing numbers of people living in poverty. It would call on the international donor community to strengthen existing and emerging microcredit institutions in the developing countries, especially the least developed and the African countries. It would also call on the United Nations system, particularly its funds and programmes and the regional commissions, to explore the microcredit approach in their programmes as a tool for the eradication of poverty and the development of other micro-finance instruments.

In part VIII of the report (document A/52/628/Add.7), a draft resolution on women in development -- approved on 9 December by a vote of 153 in favour to 2 against (Israel, United States), with no abstentions -- would have the Assembly call on all governments and the society at large to create an enabling environment by removing discriminatory barriers and ensuring the full and equal participation of women in activities through the adoption of gender- sensitive policies and legal measures. Governments would also be urged to develop national strategies for promoting sustainable and productive entrepreneurial activities for income-generation among disadvantaged women and women living in poverty. The United Nations system would be called upon to support developing countries in their efforts to integrate gender concerns into national programmes and to implement those programmes. The United Nations system would be requested to support women's income-generating activities, such as credit schemes. In the text's preambular part, it would be reaffirmed that gender equality is of fundamental importance for achieving sustained economic growth and sustainable development.

A draft resolution on part IX of the report (document A/52/628/Add.8) concerns developing human resources for development and was approved on 9 December by a vote of 154 in favour to 2 against (Israel, United States), with no abstentions. Under its provisions, the Assembly would call on the United Nations system to support national and regional human resources development and capacity-building, both among themselves and with other development partners. It would invite international organizations, including financial institutions, to support human resources development and to

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integrate it into their policies, programmes and operations. The draft's preambular part would stress that there is a need for a supportive and favourable national and international economic environment to enhance human resources development in developing countries and promote sustained economic growth and sustainable development.

In the report part X (document A/52/628/Add.9), a draft resolution on cultural development, approved without a vote on 2 December, would have the Assembly invite all Member States, the United Nations system, and non-governmental organizations to integrate cultural factors into their development programmes and projects to ensure sustainable human development that fully respects cultural diversity. It would encourage the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) to promote throughout the United Nations system a greater awareness of the crucial relationship between culture and development, taking into account the diversity of cultures.

The report of the Second Committee on "environment and sustainable development" contains nine parts.

Part III of the report (document A/52/629/Add.2) contains one draft resolution, which was approved on 9 December without a vote and concerns the implementation of the United Nations Convention to Combat Desertification in Those Countries Experiencing Serious Drought and/or Desertification, Particularly in Africa. Under its provisions, the Assembly would request the Secretary-General to authorize the Convention's interim secretariat to act as the secretariat for the transition period following the first session of the Conference of the Parties until the permanent secretariat begins operating at Bonn, by 1 January 1999. It would also request him to maintain the arrangements within the current programme budget for the interim secretariat to support the Convention until the permanent one begins operating and to maintain the arrangements relating to extrabudgetary funds.

Also by the draft, the Secretary-General would be requested to close, on 31 December 1998, the Trust Fund and the Special Voluntary Fund established under the provisions of General Assembly resolution 47/188 and to transfer any amounts remaining in those funds as of 31 December 1998 to the supplementary fund and to the special fund to be established in accordance with the financial rules. The Assembly would call on all countries, particularly developed countries, non-governmental organizations and the private sector, to contribute generously to the trust funds to be established by the Secretary- General on 1 January 1999 to facilitate activities under the Convention and to support the participation of representatives of developing and, in particular, least developed countries.

Part IV of the report (document A/52/629/Add.3) contains one draft resolution on the protection of the global climate for present and future generations of mankind, approved on 9 December without a vote. By its terms,

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the Assembly would decide to include in the calendar of conferences and meetings for the biennium 1998-1999 the sessions of the Conferences of the Parties to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change, entailing eight weeks of conference-servicing facilities envisaged for that biennium. It would also decide to maintain the arrangements regarding personnel and financial matters established in regard to the provision of administrative support to the secretariat of the Convention for the biennium 1998-1999.

The report's part V (document A/52/629/Add.4) contains one draft resolution and one draft decision.

By the draft resolution, on international cooperation to reduce the impact of the El Niño phenomenon, approved without a vote on 4 December, the Assembly would call on the United Nations system to contribute further to a comprehensive approach and study of El Niño and to intensify its cooperation with the regions affected by the phenomenon, especially with developing countries, small island developing States and landlocked countries. It would recommend that long-term public awareness and information about natural disasters, including those induced by El Niño, be integrated into national disaster management programmes and in the United Nations support for social and economic development programmes.

By the draft decision, the Assembly would take note of the following documents: the report of the Secretary-General on the International Decade for Natural Disaster Reduction (document A/52/560); and the report of the Secretary-General on improved effectiveness of early-warning systems with regard to natural and similar disasters (document A/52/561).

Part VI of the report (document A/52/629/Add.5) contains one draft resolution on the Convention on Biological Diversity, which was approved without a vote on 9 December. By that text, the Assembly would call on the States parties to the Convention to settle their arrears and to pay their contributions fully and timely to ensure continuity in the cash flow required to finance the ongoing work of the Conference of the Parties to the Convention, its subsidiary bodies and its secretariat. It would also encourage those States that had not yet ratified the Convention to do so as soon as possible. It would note that the first national reports of the States parties to the Convention were due on 1 January 1998 and would call upon parties to the Convention to meet that deadline. It would also invite the international community to assist developing countries in fulfilling that commitment.

The report's part VII (document A/52/629/Add.6), a draft resolution on the implementation of the outcome of the Barbados Global Conference on the Sustainable Development of Small Island Developing States -- approved without a vote on 4 December -- would have the Assembly request the Secretary-General to ensure that UNCTAD had the capacity to carry out the research and analysis

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necessary to complement the work of the Department of Economic and Social Affairs regarding the implementation of the Programme of Action of the Global Conference. It would also take note of the progress in the development and compilation of a vulnerability index for small island developing States and invite all relevant actors to support efforts to refine the index.

Part VIII of the report (document A/52/629/Add.7) concerns the special session for the purpose of an overall review and appraisal of the implementation of Agenda 21 and contains two draft decisions, approved on 9 December without a vote.

Draft decision I, on implementation and follow-up to the outcome of the United Nations Conference on Environment and Development (UNCED), including the outcome of the nineteenth special session of the General Assembly for the purpose of an overall review and appraisal of Agenda 21, would have the Assembly: take note of the report of the Secretary-General on the outcome of the nineteenth special session (document A/52/280); and include in the provisional agenda of its fifty-third session, under the item entitled "Environment and sustainable development" a sub-item entitled "Implementation and follow-up to the outcome of the United Nations Conference on Environment and Development, including the outcome of the nineteenth special session of the General Assembly for the purpose of an overall review and appraisal of the implementation of Agenda 21".

Draft decision II, on progress in the implementation of conventions related to sustainable development, would have the Assembly: continue to review the progress made in implementing the conventions signed at UNCED or established as a result of the Conference, as well as other conventions relating to sustainable development; and invite, beginning in the year 2000, the conferences of the parties to the conventions signed at UNCED to take all appropriate measures to avoid convening their sessions and those of their subsidiary bodies during the sessions of the General Assembly.

By the terms of a draft decision on the report of the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP), contained in part IX of the report (document A/52/629/Add.8), the Assembly would take note of the report of the UNEP Governing Council.

The Second Committee's report on "operational activities for development" contains three draft resolutions and one draft decision (document A/52/630).

Draft resolution I, on operational activities for development of the United Nations, approved without a vote on 4 December, would have the Assembly request the Secretary-General, when presenting his comprehensive report on the triennial policy review of operational activities for development to the Assembly at its fifty-third session, to consider the implications of steps adopted by the United Nations system to implement reform initiatives, and to

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make recommendations for their effective and expeditious implementation, bearing in mind the views of Member States. The Assembly would also request the funds and programmes in their regular reporting to it on the triennial policy review, to include actions taken to implement adopted reform measures of the Secretary-General, analyzing the implications of those reforms for operational activities and for inter-agency coordination.

Draft resolution II, on cooperation between the United Nations and the Southern African Development Community (SADC), approved on 2 December without a vote, would have the Assembly call on the Members States that have not yet established contact and relationships with the Community to consider doing so. It would also call on the international community to support the creation of special economic zones and development corridors in the Community, especially the Maputo Development Corridor, which was already under implementation. It would request the Secretary-General, in consultation with the Community's Executive Secretary, to promote and harmonize cooperation between the United Nations and the Community. It would also appeal to the international community and the United Nations system to assist Community members in the process of national reconstruction.

Draft resolution III, on economic and technical cooperation among developing countries, approved without a vote on 4 December, would have the Assembly decide to hold a one-day commemorative meeting at the beginning of its fifty-third session to mark the twentieth anniversary of the adoption of the Buenos Aires Plan of Action for Promoting and Implementing Technical Cooperation among Developing Countries. The Special Unit for Technical Cooperation among Developing Countries of the UNDP would be requested to prepare and organize the commemorative meeting.

By the draft decision, also approved on 4 December without a vote, the Assembly would take note of the following documents: report of the High-level Committee on the Review of Technical Cooperation among Developing Countries (document A/52/39); report of the Joint Inspection Unit (JIU) entitled "Review of financial resources allocated by the United Nations system to activities of non-governmental organizations (document A/51/655-E/1996/105) and the note by the Secretary-General transmitting the comments of the Administrative Committee on Coordination (ACC) thereon" (document A/52/114-E/1997/46); and report of the JIU entitled "Coordination of policy and programming frameworks for more effective development cooperation" (document A/51/636-E/1996/104) and the note by the Secretary-General transmitting the ACC comments thereon (document A/52/115-E/1997/47).

The Committee's report on "training and research" (document A/52/631) contains one draft resolution on the United Nations Institute for Training and Research (UNITAR), approved without a vote on 5 December. Under its provisions, the Assembly would appeal to all governments and to private institutions that had not yet contributed financially or otherwise to the Institute to do so. It would urge States that interrupted their voluntary

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contributions to consider resuming them, in light of the successful restructuring and revitalization of the Institute. It would stress the need for an effective division of labour among the main training and research institutions of the United Nations system, taking into account the distinct and complementary mandates of the United Nations University, UNITAR and the United Nations Staff College project. It would invite the Institute to strengthen its cooperation with other United Nations institutes and relevant national, regional and international bodies.

The report on permanent sovereignty of the Palestinian people in the occupied Palestinian territory, including Jerusalem, and of the Arab population of the occupied Syrian Golan over their natural resources (document A/52/632) contains one draft resolution approved by a vote of 124 in favour to 2 against (Israel, United States), with 13 abstentions, on 2 December. The text would have the Assembly reaffirm the inalienable rights of the Palestinian people and the population of the occupied Syrian Golan over their natural resources, including land and water. It would call upon Israel not to exploit, to cause loss or depletion of, or endanger the natural resources in the occupied Palestinian territory, including Jerusalem, and in the occupied Syrian Golan.

The report on sectoral policy questions (document A/52/627) contains one draft resolution and one draft decision.

The draft resolution, on industrial development cooperation: Second Industrial Development Decade for Africa, was approved on 9 December by a vote of 151 in favour to 1 against (United States), with no abstentions. Under its provisions, the Assembly would call on all Member States to implement the Industrial Development Decade for Africa and the Plan of Action for the Alliance for Africa's Industrialization. The United Nations Industrial Development Organization (UNIDO) and the Economic Commission for Africa (ECA) would be called upon to strengthen their coordination with the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) and other United Nations agencies and donors to accelerate the implementation and goals of the Industrial Decade for Development of Africa. In the text's preambular part the importance of industrialization would be recognized as a key element in promoting sustained economic growth and sustainable development in Africa, as well as facilitating efforts towards the eradication of poverty, the integration of women in the development process and the creation of productive employment.

By the terms of the draft decision, approved on 9 December without a vote, the Assembly would take note of the following documents: note by the Secretary-General transmitting the report of the Director-General of the Food and Agriculture Organization on the outcome of the World Food Summit, held in Rome from 13 to 17 November 1996 (document A/52/132-E/1997/57); and report of the Secretary-General on entrepreneurship and privatization for economic growth and sustainable development (document A/52/428).

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Also under sectoral policy questions, the Assembly has before it a draft resolution sponsored by Venezuela on business and development (document A/52/L.70). Under its provisions, the Assembly would call on the United Nations funds and programmes to continue to support the promotion of entrepreneurship and to give due consideration to the role of the private sector in development, taking into account the priorities of each country and ensuring a gender perspective. It would also stress the need to assist countries, particularly developing countries and countries with economies in transition, in strengthening their capacity to encourage wide participation of the private sector. The UNCTAD would be encouraged to provide a forum for intergovernmental discussions, with the participation of the private sector, concerning issues related to privatization, enterprise development, and international flows of investment. The UNIDO and other relevant United Nations organs would be invited to further strengthen their activities, particularly for Africa and the least developed countries, in the promotion of entrepreneurship development, especially for small and medium-sized enterprises. The international community would be called upon to support UNIDO in that regard.

The Committee's document on the "report of the Economic and Social Council" contains one draft resolution and five draft decisions (A/52/625).

Under the provisions of the draft resolution, on the report of the Committee on Development Planning, approved without a vote on 4 December, the Assembly would decide to postpone its consideration of Economic and Social Council decision 1997/223, on the usefulness of the vulnerability index as a criterion for the designation of the least developed countries, as well as the graduation of Vanuatu, a small island developing State, from the list of the least developed countries.

Draft decision I on the graduation from the list of least developed countries, approved on 4 December without a vote, the Assembly would decide that Cape Verde, Maldives and Samoa should graduate from the list of least developed countries at the time of the next review, in 2000, provided that they continue to meet the criteria for graduation at that time.

Draft decision II, approved on 4 December without a vote, concerns the revision of the General Regulations of the World Food Programme (WFP). It would have the Assembly endorse the revisions of the WFP General Regulations, as contained in the annex to the report of the Programme's Executive Board.

Draft decision III, on the report of the Council of the United Nations University (UNU), was also approved without a vote on 4 December. It would have the Assembly decide that, beginning in 1998, the report of the Council of the University will be considered directly by the Second Committee of the General Assembly, in accordance with its programme of work.

Draft decision IV, also approved on 4 December without a vote, and

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concerning documents relating to the report of the Economic and Social Council, would have the Assembly take note of the following documents: relevant chapters of the report of the Council for 1997 (document A/52/3), including chapters I-IV, chapter V, sections A, B, C, F, G, H, I and J, Chapter VII, and annexes; report of the Secretary-General on strengthening the coordination of the organization and bodies of the United Nations system in the field of energy (document A/52/175-E/1997/75); report of the Secretary- General on new and innovative funds for globally agreed commitments and priorities (document A/52/203-E/1997/85); note by the Secretary-General transmitting the report of the Executive Director of the United Nations Population Fund (UNFPA) on the United Nations Population Award (document A/52/212); and note by the Secretary-General transmitting the statement by the ACC on universal access to basic communications and information services (document A/52/354).

Draft decision V, approved on 9 December without a vote, would have the Assembly approve the biennial programme of work of the Second Committee for 1998-1999, as annexed to the text.

Action on Second Committee Reports

RAE KWON CHUNG (Republic of Korea), the Rapporteur of the Second Committee, introduced its reports.

OSCAR DE ROJAS (Venezuela), Chairman of the Second Committee, said that after the Committee had suspended its work, informal consultations had been held. There had been an agreement that to the phrase "sustained economic growth and sustainable development" -- which appeared in six drafts that had been approved by recorded votes in the Committee -- a phrase taken from provisions of Assembly resolution 51/219, on programme planning, should be added, reading as follows: "in accordance with the relevant resolutions of the General Assembly and recent United Nations Conferences".

The six drafts containing that language appeared in the following reports:

-- A/52/626/Add.1, page 11, preambular paragraph 5, item 95 (a) entitled "Macroeconomic policy questions: financing of development, including net transfer of resources between developing and developed countries";

-- A/52/626/Add.4, page 9, preambular paragraph 13 and operative paragraph 5, and page 12, operative paragraph 20, item 95 (d) entitled "Macroeconomic policy questions: external debt crisis and development";

-- A/52/627, page 15, preambular paragraph 4, item 96 (a) entitled "Sectoral policy questions: Industrial development cooperation";

General Assembly Plenary Press Release GA/9387 77th Meeting (PM) 18 December 1997

-- A/52/628/Add.1, page 5, operative paragraph 2, item 97 (a) entitled "Sustainable development and international economic cooperation: Renewal of the dialogue of strengthening international economic cooperation for development through partnership";

-- A/52/628/Add.7, page 7, preambular paragraph 3, item 97 (g) entitled "Sustainable development and international economic cooperation: women in development"; and

-- A/52/628/Add.8, page 6, preambular paragraph 5, item 97 (h) entitled "Sustainable development and international economic cooperation: human resources development".

HENNADIY UDOVENKO (Ukraine), the President of the General Assembly, said it was his understanding that the oral amendments submitted by the representative of Venezuela to those six draft resolutions were acceptable to the Assembly and that it could proceed in its adoption of those texts as orally amended by him.

The Assembly approved the President's proposal.

First, the Assembly took up the report on "macroeconomic policy questions".

The Assembly took note of part I of the report.

Draft resolution I, on global partnership for development, was adopted without a vote.

Draft resolution II, on global financial flows, was adopted, as orally amended by the representative of Venezuela, without a vote.

Speaking after action, BAGAS HAPSORO (Indonesia) said every country could become vulnerable during the liberalization of their economic and financial regimes, regardless of their stages of development. The globalization of financial markets could create new risks of instability, which had the potential to aggravate the volatility of short-term capital flows and adversely affect the international financial system. The capacity to fine tune volatility in the short term through macroeconomic management per se had little impact. As the movements of large volumes of funds could take place rapidly between markets across national borders, government policy had a critical role to play and represented a potent means for avoiding extremes in the business cycles.

He said the promotion of capital account liberalization which was called for in the resolution should be done in an orderly and flexible manner so as to enable individual member countries to tailor their capital account liberalization to the circumstances pertaining to each of their countries.

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The resolution on global financial flows was, no doubt, an example of constructive negotiations and cooperation on the part of all groups and delegations. Although the process was arduous and difficult, all sides, finally, had exercised flexibility, a willingness to negotiate, and made the necessary compromises in order to reach consensus.

LIBRAN CABACTULAN (Philippines) said his delegation must emphasize the following points as contained in the resolution adopted by consensus. First, the bureau of the Second Committee should undertake informal consultations with Member States in order to determine the most appropriate dates for the Committee's resumed session. Secondly, he would prefer that the resumed session be convened as soon as possible. Thirdly, the success of the ad hoc working group to be convened in the fifty-third session would depend on the reports identified in the resolution and the index report of recurring themes and key elements as well as on the careful examination of all reports requested, as referred to in operative paragraph 5 of the resolution.

BETTY KING (United States) said the United States was deeply convinced that economic development, social development and environmental protection were interdependent and mutually reinforcing components of sustainable development, which was the framework for the efforts to achieve a higher quality of life for all people. Equitable social development that recognized empowering the poor to utilize environmental resources sustainably was a necessary foundation for sustainable development. The United States also recognized that broad-based and sustained economic growth in the context of sustainable development was necessary to sustain social development and social justice.

DAUDI MWAKAWAGO (United Republic of Tanzania), speaking on behalf of the "Group of 77" developing countries and China, said that for any development process to be meaningful, particularly in developing countries, economic growth which was sustainable over a period of time was crucial and critical. That required the support of developed countries in terms of increased additional resources and transfer of appropriate technology. Yet it was not always true that sustainable development based on private sector initiatives should be the driving force towards attaining rapid social development and environmental protection in developing countries. Sustainable development objectives were only attainable if economic growth was sustained in the medium and longer term.

To most developing countries, the sustainable development approach, as emphasized by most of their developed partners, was considered restrictive, limiting economic growth to social development and protection of the environment, he said. It was in that context that the Group of 77 and China had difficulties in accepting the language as proposed by the United States. In the spirit of compromise, and following the tradition of the Committee, the Group of 77 and China had accepted the compromise package so that all the six resolutions could be adopted by consensus. Its acceptance of that package

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should in no way prejudice future use of the concept in the work of the Committee.

MIRTHA HORMILLA CASTRO (Cuba) said the replacement of the concept of "sustained economic growth and sustainable development" with the phrase from the medium-term plan in the six resolutions previously put to vote in the Second Committee limited the concept of sustainable development. It was the long-standing position on principle taken by developing countries. The wording that appears in the medium-term plan was the outcome of difficult negations and imposed an interpretation different from sustained economic growth and sustainable development in the context of the resolutions before the Assembly. Cuba recognized the importance of compromise as means of mobilizing political will and commitment of all States in promotion of development. She requested that her statement be considered as an explanation of vote on all six resolutions amended this afternoon.

JEAN-CLAUDE MEYER (Luxembourg), speaking on behalf of the European Union, said the Union attached great importance to the concept of sustainable development, and agreed with the position presented by the representative of Venezuela. His explanation should be entered into the record in the six resolutions orally amended.

Next, the Assembly took up the report on trade and development.

The draft resolution on unilateral economic measures as a means of political and economic coercion against developing countries was adopted by a recorded vote of 109 in favour to 1 against (United States), with 50 abstentions. (See Annex I.)

The draft resolution on international trade and development was adopted without a vote.

The draft resolution on the needs and problems of landlocked developing countries was also adopted without a vote.

Next, the Assembly adopted without a vote the draft resolutions on science and technology for development; and the external debt problem of developing countries.

The Assembly then took up the Committee's report on sustainable development and international economic cooperation.

The Assembly took note of part I of the report.

The draft resolution on renewal of the development dialogue through partnership, as orally amended by the representative of Venezuela, was adopted without a vote.

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Speaking after action, PRIANTI GAGARIN SINGGIH (Indonesia) said the resolution demonstrated the international community's determination that there was no alternative to constructive dialogue based on the imperatives of mutual interest and benefits, shared responsibilities and interdependence. Such a dialogue was expected to contribute to efforts to identify the key elements that had emanated from globalization, including integration, interdependence, the link between peace and prosperity and linkages between globalization and sustainable development.

Partnership was one of the most compelling challenges facing the international community, she said. The resolution was a timely and appropriate response to launch the continued process of dialogue among all actors concerned. Regional integration should be built to prevent any attempt to inward looking, which could lead to the closing of trading blocks. It would also stop the increased reliance of developed countries on developed country markets to promote export growth. The text was a critical and necessary step to move forward steadily to the fulfilment of cooperation for development.

The draft resolution on the implementation of the Programme of Action for the Least Developed Countries for the 1990s was also adopted without a vote.

Also adopted without a vote were the draft resolutions on population and development, and international migration and development.

The draft resolution on implementation of the outcome of the second United Nations Conference on Human Settlements (Habitat II) (Istanbul, June 1996) was adopted without a vote. Also adopted without a vote were the texts on the Global Strategy for Shelter to the Year 2000 and on follow-up to Habitat II and the future role of the Commission on Human Settlements.

Next, the Assembly adopted without a vote the draft resolution on the First United Nations Decade for the Eradication of Poverty.

The draft resolution on the role of microcredit in the eradication of poverty was also adopted without a vote.

The draft resolution on women in development was adopted, as orally amended by the representative of Venezuela, without a vote.

The draft resolution on developing human resources for development was adopted, as orally amended by the representative of Venezuela, without a vote.

The draft resolution on cultural development was adopted without a vote.

The Assembly next took up the report of the Second Committee on environment and sustainable development.

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The Assembly took note of part I of that report.

The Assembly adopted the draft decision on the report of UNEP.

The Assembly then took note of the Committee's report entitled "Implementation of decisions and recommendations of the United Nations Conference on Environment and Development".

Adopted without a vote were the draft resolutions on the Convention to Combat Desertification; protection of the global climate for present and future generations of mankind; international cooperation to reduce the impact of the El Niño phenomenon; and the draft decision taking note of reports on natural disaster reduction.

Speaking after action, EMILIO IZQUIERDO (Ecuador) said his Government was satisfied with the adoption of the resolution on the El Nino phenomenon, which chiefly affected the countries that bordered the Pacific Ocean. The adoption of the text reflected the international community's determination to work in concert to repair the devastating effects of that phenomenon. The text was a timely contribution by the United Nations that would make it possible to reinforce the coordinated work of individual States to put together a concerted strategy on the international level to tackle the negative effects of El Niño. His Government would like to highlight the establishment of the inter-agency task force whose work would be important in discharging the mandate handed down by the resolution.

Next, the draft resolution on the Convention on Biological Diversity was adopted without a vote, as was the text on the Global Conference on the Sustainable Development of Small Island Developing States.

Also without a vote, the Assembly adopted the draft decisions on the implementation and follow-up to the outcome of UNCED and the progress in the implementation of conventions related to sustainable development.

The Assembly then took up the report on operational activities for development.

The draft resolution on operational activities for development of the United Nations was adopted without a vote.

The draft resolution on cooperation between the United Nations and the Southern African Development Community (SADC) was adopted without a vote.

The draft resolution on economic and technical cooperation among developing countries was adopted without a vote.

The draft decision taking note of reports considered under the item on operational activities for development was also adopted without a vote.

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Next, the Assembly took up the report on training and research and adopted the draft resolution on UNITAR without a vote.

The report on "permanent sovereignty of the Palestinian people in the occupied Palestinian territory, including Jerusalem, and of the Arab population of the occupied Syrian Golan over their natural resources" was before the Assembly for action. The draft resolution contained in that report was adopted by a recorded vote of 137 in favour to 2 against (Israel, United States), with 14 abstentions. (See Annex II.)

The report on sectoral policy questions was before the Assembly for action.

The draft resolution on industrial development cooperation was adopted, as orally amended by the representative of Venezuela, without a vote.

The draft decision taking note of reports under the consideration of sectoral policy questions was also adopted without a vote.

Mr. DE ROJAS (Venezuela) introduced the draft resolution on business and development contained in document A/52/L.70.

The draft resolution on business and development was then adopted without a vote.

Next the Assembly took up the document on the report of the Economic and Social Council.

The draft resolution on the report of the Committee on Development Planning was adopted without a vote. Also adopted without a vote were the draft decisions on the following: graduation of Cape Verde, Maldives and Samoa from the list of least developed countries; revision of the General Regulations of the World Food Programme; report of the Council of the United Nations University; documents relating to the report of the Economic and Social Council; and the biennial programme of work of the Second Committee for 1998-1999.

SYLVIE LUCAS (Luxembourg), speaking on behalf of the European Union and Bulgaria, Czech Republic, Estonia, Hungary, Latvia, Romania, Slovakia and Cyprus, said macroeconomic development and development questions could only be addressed effectively through consensus. The European Union was pleased that a compromise was found that allowed the Committee to adopt almost all reports by consensus. The European Union was concerned that the Committee had to vote on a number of resolutions other than those for which a vote was normally required. It should have been possible to reach compromises in the Committee. The Union expressed gratitude to the bureau of the Second Committee and the Russian Federation delegation for their efforts in ensuring that consensus was reached on all points.

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She welcomed the organization by the Committee during the session of the round-table and panel discussions in which first-rank guests participated, in particular those that brought the Second and Third Committees together. Holding such events as close as possible to the examination of the relevant issues should allow delegations to benefit from them. The General Assembly should be maintained as the principal forum for the discussion of major topical issues. Self-discipline must be maintained in the work of the Committee so that its work could be completed within its time limit. Combining different resolutions and increasing the number of so-called omnibus resolutions should be explored. Recent tendency to introduce separate resolutions on subjects that required an integrated and overall approach was regretable.

The Assembly President commended the Second Committee for the important work it had undertaken. It had made a remarkable contribution to the process of consensus-making, which was an important feature of the Assembly's current session. He thanked delegations for their cooperation, particulary the Russian Federation, the Group of 77 and China and the United States. Mr. de Rojas (Venezuela) should be commended for his chairmanship of the Committee and his efforts which resulted in adoption by consensus of the resolutions of the Second Committee.

(annexes follow)

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General Assembly Plenary Press Release GA/9387 77th Meeting (PM) 18 December 1997

ANNEX I

Vote on Economic Coercive Measures

The draft resolution on unilateral economic measures as a means of political and economic coercion against developing countries was adopted by a vote of 109 in favour to 1 against, with 50 abstentions, as follows:

In favour: Afghanistan, Algeria, Angola, Antigua and Barbuda, Argentina, Bahamas, Bahrain, Bangladesh, Barbados, Belize, Benin, Bolivia, Botswana, Brazil, Brunei Darussalam, Burkina Faso, Burundi, Cameroon, Cape Verde, Chad, Chile, China, Colombia, Costa Rica, Cote d'Ivoire, Cuba, Democratic People's Republic of Korea, Democratic Republic of the Congo, Djibouti, Dominica, Dominican Republic, Ecuador, Egypt, El Salvador, Equatorial Guinea, Eritrea, Ethiopia, Gabon, Ghana, Grenada, Guatemala, Guinea, Guyana, Haiti, Honduras, India, Indonesia, Iran, Jamaica, Jordan, Kenya, Kyrgyzstan, Lao People's Democratic Republic, Lesotho, Liberia, Libya, Madagascar, Malawi, Malaysia, Maldives, Mali, Malta, Marshall Islands, Mauritania, Mauritius, Mexico, Mongolia, Morocco, Mozambique, Myanmar, Namibia, Nicaragua, Niger, Nigeria, Oman, Pakistan, Panama, Papua New Guinea, Paraguay, Peru, Philippines, Qatar, Republic of the Congo, Saint Kitts and Nevis, Saint Lucia, Samoa, Saudi Arabia, Senegal, Singapore, Solomon Islands, South Africa, Sri Lanka, Sudan, Swaziland, Syria, Thailand, Togo, Trinidad and Tobago, Tunisia, United Arab Emirates, United Republic of Tanzania, Uruguay, Uzbekistan, Vanuatu, Venezuela, Viet Nam, Yemen, Zambia, Zimbabwe.

Against: United States.

Abstain: Andorra, Armenia, Australia, Austria, Azerbaijan, Belarus, Belgium, Bulgaria, Canada, Croatia, Cyprus, Czech Republic, Denmark, Federated States of Micronesia, Finland, France, Georgia, Germany, Greece, Hungary, Iceland, Ireland, Israel, Italy, Japan, Kazakhstan, Latvia, Liechtenstein, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Monaco, Netherlands, New Zealand, Norway, Poland, Portugal, Republic of Korea, Republic of Moldova, Romania, Russian Federation, San Marino, Slovakia, Slovenia, Spain, Sweden, The former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia, Turkey, Turkmenistan, Ukraine, United Kingdom.

Absent: Albania, Bhutan, Cambodia, Comoros, Estonia, Fiji, Guinea- Bissau, Kuwait, Lebanon, Nepal, Palau, Rwanda, Saint Vincent and the Grenadines, Seychelles, Sierra Leone, Suriname, Tajikistan, Uganda.

(END OF ANNEX I)

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ANNEX II

Vote on Sovereignty of Palestinian People over Natural Resources

The draft resolution on permanent sovereignty of the Palestinian people in the occupied Palestinian territory, including Jerusalem, and of the Arab population in the occupied Syrian Golan over their natural resources was adopted by a vote of 137 in favour to 2 against with 14 abstentions, as follows:

In favour: Afghanistan, Albania, Algeria, Andorra, Angola, Antigua and Barbuda, Argentina, Armenia, Australia, Austria, Azerbaijan, Bahrain, Bangladesh, Belgium, Belize, Benin, Bolivia, Botswana, Brazil, Brunei Darussalam, Burkina Faso, Cameroon, Canada, Cape Verde, Chad, Chile, China, Colombia, Cote d'Ivoire, Cuba, Cyprus, Czech Republic, Democratic People's Republic of Korea, Democratic Republic of the Congo, Denmark, Djibouti, Ecuador, Egypt, Eritrea, Estonia, Ethiopia, Finland, France, Gabon, Germany, Ghana, Greece, Guinea, Guinea-Bissau, Guyana, Haiti, Honduras, Hungary, Iceland, India, Indonesia, Iran, Ireland, Italy, Jamaica, Japan, Jordan, Kazakhstan, Kenya, Kuwait, Kyrgyzstan, Lao People's Democratic Republic, Latvia, Lebanon, Liberia, Libya, Liechtenstein, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Malawi, Malaysia, Maldives, Mali, Malta, Mauritania, Mauritius, Mexico, Monaco, Mongolia, Morocco, Mozambique, Myanmar, Namibia, Netherlands, New Zealand, Nicaragua, Niger, Nigeria, Norway, Oman, Pakistan, Panama, Papua New Guinea, Peru, Philippines, Poland, Portugal, Qatar, Republic of Korea, Republic of Moldova, Romania, Russian Federation, Saint Lucia, Samoa, San Marino, Saudi Arabia, Senegal, Singapore, Slovakia, Slovenia, Solomon Islands, South Africa, Spain, Sri Lanka, Sudan, Sweden, Syria, Thailand, The former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia, Togo, Trinidad and Tobago, Tunisia, Turkey, Ukraine, United Arab Emirates, United Kingdom, United Republic of Tanzania, Vanuatu, Venezuela, Viet Nam, Yemen, Zimbabwe.

Against: Israel, United States.

Abstain: Bahamas, Barbados, Belarus, Bulgaria, Croatia, Federated States of Micronesia, Georgia, Grenada, Marshall Islands, Paraguay, Saint Kitts and Nevis, Swaziland, Uruguay, Uzbekistan.

Absent: Bhutan, Burundi, Cambodia, Comoros, Costa Rica, Dominica, Dominican Republic, El Salvador, Equatorial Guinea, Fiji, Guatemala, Lesotho, Madagascar, Nepal, Palau, Republic of the Congo, Rwanda, Saint Vincent and the Grenadines, Seychelles, Sierra Leone, Suriname,

Tajikistan, Turkmenistan, Uganda, Zambia.

* *** *

For information media. Not an official record.