GENERAL ASSEMBLY ADOPTS 40 RESOLUTIONS, FIVE DECISIONS ON WIDE RANGE OF ECONOMIC, FINANCIAL ISSUES

22 December 2004
GA/10322

GENERAL ASSEMBLY ADOPTS 40 RESOLUTIONS, FIVE DECISIONS ON WIDE RANGE OF ECONOMIC, FINANCIAL ISSUES

22/12/2004
Press ReleaseGA/10322

Fifty-ninth General Assembly

Plenary

75th Meeting (AM)

GENERAL ASSEMBLY ADOPTS 40 RESOLUTIONS, Five DECISIONS

 

ON WIDERANGE OF ECONOMIC, FINANCIAL ISSUES

 

Importance of Open, Transparent, Inclusive Trading System Emphasized;

Poverty, Corruption, Disaster Relief, Sustainable Development also Addressed

Expressing concern that several developing countries had failed to fully benefit from the global economy and trade liberalization, the General Assembly stressed the importance of an open, transparent, inclusive and democratic process for the effective functioning of the multilateral trading system, as it adopted one of 40 draft resolutions and five draft decisions recommended by its Second Committee (Economic and Financial) this afternoon.

Such a democratic process would allow for internal transparency and effective member participation, and for participants to have their vital interests reflected in trade negotiation outcomes.  Adopting that text on international trade and development in a recorded 166 votes in favour to 2 against (Palau, United States), with 6 abstentions (Australia, Canada, Israel, Japan, New Zealand, Republic of Korea), the Assembly also emphasized that issues related to trade, debt and finance and transfer of technology duly covered in the World Trade Organization (WTO) Doha work programme should be addressed as a high priority in accordance with that programme and the WTO General Council decision of 1 August 2004 (see annex I for voting details).

Further by that draft, the Assembly called on developed countries to work towards the objective of duty-free, quota-free market access for all exports from least developed countries.  It also stressed the importance of strengthening the trade, investment and business environment through adoption of domestic measures and conditions to encourage local, regional and international investment, as well as efforts to prevent and dismantle anti-competitive practices and promote responsibility and accountability among corporate actors at both the international and national levels.

Among several other drafts focusing on macroeconomics, the Assembly adopted a text on commodities, emphasizing the need to encourage diversification, liberalization of trade and exports, and enhanced competitiveness by developing countries that were heavily dependent on primary commodities.  Adopting that draft by consensus following a prior recorded vote on operative paragraph 12 of 170 in favour to 2 against (Palau, United States), with 2 abstentions (Canada, Israel) (see annex II), it also emphasized the importance of official development assistance (ODA) for agriculture and rural development, and invited developing countries to prioritize agriculture and rural development in their national development strategies and programmes.

Further by that text, the Assembly urged governments and international financial organizations to continue assessing the effectiveness of systems for compensatory financing of shortfalls in export earnings, and stressed the importance of empowering developing-country commodity producers to insure themselves against risk, including natural disasters.  Calling on developed countries to work towards providing duty-free and quota-free market access for the LDC products, it also encouraged developing countries to contribute to improved market access for those nations.

By another consensus text on the international financial system and development, the Assembly stressed the importance of strong domestic institutions in promoting business activities and financial stability to achieve growth and development through sound macroeconomic policies, as well as policies aimed at strengthening the regulatory systems of the corporate, financial and banking sectors.  Emphasizing that it was essential to ensure the importance of effective and equitable participation by developing countries in formulating financial standards and codes, it also underscored the need to ensure their implementation as a contribution to reducing vulnerability to financial crisis and contagion.  The Assembly also stressed the need to continuously improve standards of corporate and public-sector governance, including accounting, auditing and measures to ensure transparency.

Adopting without a vote a draft on follow-up to and implementation of the outcome of the International Conference on Financing for Development, the Assembly stressed the importance of advancing efforts to reform the international financial architecture.  Recalling commitments made at the International Conference on Financing for Development (Monterrey, 2002) to increase the levels and effectiveness of official development assistance, it further urged developed countries that had not yet done so to make concrete efforts towards the target of 0.7 per cent of gross national product (GNP) as official assistance to developing countries, and 0.15 to 0.20 per cent of their GNP to least developed countries.

By a draft on the external debt crisis and development, also adopted without a vote, the Assembly stressed that debt relief could play a key role in liberating resources for poverty eradication, economic growth and sustainable development.  It would also stress the importance of continued flexibility in eligibility criteria for the Heavily Indebted Poor Countries (HIPC) Debt Initiative and encourage the exploration of mechanisms to address the debt problems of those countries, such as debt-for-sustainable development swaps, or multicreditor debt swap arrangements.  Further, it emphasized that country-specific circumstances and the impact of external shocks should be taken into account in debt sustainability analyses, and invite the IMF and the World Bank to consider fundamental changes caused by, among other factors, natural disasters, conflicts and changes in global growth prospects or trade in assessing debt sustainability.

Adopting without a vote another draft on the role of the United Nations in promoting development in the context of globalization and interdependence, the Assembly stressed the importance of migration as a phenomenon accompanying increased globalization, including its impact on economies, and underlined the need for greater coordination and cooperation among countries as well as relevant regional and international organizations.  It further stressed the need to build an inclusive information society, and that national efforts needed support by effective international and regional cooperation among governments, the private sector, civil society and other stakeholders to assist in bridging the “digital

divide”, promoting access to information and communication technologies, creating digital opportunities and harnessing the potential of information and communication technologies for development.

By a consensus text on the triennial comprehensive policy review of operational activities for development of the United Nations system, the Assembly called on donor countries to substantially increase their contributions to the core/regular budgets of the United Nations development system.  It also urged all organizations of the development system to intensify inter-agency information sharing at the system-wide level, and strengthen the capacity of developing countries better to utilize the various aid modalities, including system-wide approaches and budget support.  Further, it urged members of the Executive Group of the United Nations Development Group (UNDG) to develop a procedure for the common assessment of resident coordinators’ performance, and requested the Secretary-General to develop, by the end of 2005, a comprehensive accountability framework for resident coordinators.

Adding its support to the Organization’s pending Convention against Corruption, the Assembly adopted a draft on preventing and combating corrupt practices and the transfer of funds of illicit origin and returning such assets to the countries of origin, calling for further international cooperation to support national, subregional and regional efforts to prevent and combat corrupt practices.  Condemning corruption in all its forms, including bribery, money-laundering and the transfer of assets of illicit origin, it reiterated its invitation to all MemberStates and competent regional economic organizations to sign, ratify and fully implement the Convention against Corruption as soon as possible to ensure its rapid entry into force.

Further by that draft, the Assembly urged Member States to abide by the principles of proper management of public affairs and public property, fairness, responsibility and equality before the law and the need to safeguard integrity and foster a culture of transparency, accountability and rejection of corruption.  It would also call on the private sector, at both the national and international levels, including small and large companies and transnational corporations, to remain fully engaged in the fight against corruption, and emphasize the need for all stakeholders to continue promoting corporate responsibility and accountability.

Turning to two new agenda items the Assembly had allocated to the Second Committee this year, it adopted a series of resolutions relating to special economic assistance to individual countries or regions, and information and communication technologies for development.

Adopting a draft on humanitarian assistance and rehabilitation for Ethiopia, the Assembly called on the international community to provide a timely response to the joint 2005 appeal for emergency food and non-food assistance to that country. By a draft on assistance for humanitarian relief and the economic and social rehabilitation of Somalia, it urged the international community to provide the Somali people with humanitarian assistance and relief to alleviate the consequences of the prevailing drought.  Additional drafts the Assembly adopted under that topic were on rehabilitation and reconstruction of Liberia; assistance to Mozambique; humanitarian and special economic assistance to Serbia and Montenegro; and international assistance for the economic rehabilitation of Angola.

In the area of information technologies, the Assembly adopted a draft on the World Summit on the Information Society, endorsing the Declaration of Principles and the Plan of Action the Summit adopted on 12 December 2003, and stressing the importance of the effective and timely implementation of the Plan of Action.  It also urged Member States, United Nations bodies, including the Information and Communication Technologies Task Force, and other intergovernmental organizations, non-governmental organizations, civil society and the private sector to actively help implement the Summit.  Further, it called on the international community to make voluntary contributions to the special fund set up by the International Telecommunication Union to support Summit preparations.

In addition, the Assembly adopted several consensus drafts in the area of environment and sustainable development, including a text on the integrated management approach to the Caribbean Sea area in the context of sustainable development.  By that draft, the Assembly called on the United Nations to help Caribbean countries protect the Caribbean Sea from degradation due to ship pollution, especially illegal oil spills and other harmful substances, and from the accidental release of hazardous waste, including radioactive materials, nuclear waste and dangerous chemicals.  Adopting that draft without a vote following adoption of preambular paragraph 14 in a recorded 167 votes in favour to 1 against (United States), with 1 abstention (Japan), the Assembly also encouraged further efforts toward regional cooperation to address land-based pollution, pollution from ships, physical impacts on coral reefs, and the dynamic interaction of socio-economic activities for the use of coastal areas and the marine environment (see annex III).

Addressing the upcoming International Meeting to Review the Implementation of the Programme of Action for the Sustainable Development of Small Island Developing States, to be held in Mauritius from 10 to 14 January 2005, the Assembly adopted a text on further implementation of the Programme of Action for the Sustainable Development of Small Island Developing States.  By that draft, the Assembly decided to hold two days of informal consultations in Mauritius, on 8 and 9 January 2005, to prepare for the International Meeting.

Another draft was on the permanent sovereignty of the Palestinian People in the occupied Palestinian territory, including East Jerusalem, and of the Arab Population in the occupied Syrian Golan over their natural resources.  Adopting that draft in a recorded vote of 156 in favour to 5 against (Federated States of Micronesia, Israel, Marshall Islands, Palau, United States), with 11 abstentions, the Assembly called on Israel not to exploit, damage, cause loss, deplete or endanger natural resources in those territories (see annex IV).

Other consensus environmental texts addressed the report of the Governing Council of the United Nations Environment Programme on its eighth special session; implementation of Agenda 21, the Programme for the Further Implementation of Agenda 21 and the outcomes of the World Summit on Sustainable Development; and activities undertaken during the International Year of Freshwater, 2003, preparations for the International Decade for Action, “Water for Life”, 2005-2015, and further efforts to achieve the sustainable development of water resources; and the international strategy for disaster reduction.

In addition, the Assembly adopted texts related to international cooperation to reduce the impact of the El Niño phenomenon; natural disasters and vulnerability; protection of global climate for present and future generations of mankind; United Nations Convention to Combat Desertification in Those Countries Experiencing Serious Drought and/or Desertification, Particularly in Africa; Convention on Biological Diversity; United Nations Decade of Education for Sustainable Development; and rendering assistance to the poor mountain countries to overcome obstacles in socio-economic and ecological areas”.

Other drafts the Assembly adopted today concerned industrial development cooperation; specific actions related to the particular needs and problems of landlocked developing countries:  outcome of the International Ministerial Conference of Landlocked and Transit Developing Countries and Donor Countries and International Financial and Development Institutions on Transit Transport Cooperation; the Third United Nations Conference on the Least Developed Countries; and implementation of the Outcome of the United Nations Conference on Human Settlements (Habitat II) and the Strengthening of the United Nations Human Settlements Programme (United Nations-HABITAT).

The Assembly also adopted texts related to international migration and development; integration of the economies in transition into the world economy; role of microcredit and microfinance in the eradication of poverty; implementation of the first United Nations Decade for the Eradication of Poverty (1997-2006); World Survey on the Role of Women in Development; United Nations Institute for Training and Research; and the United Nations University.

In addition, it adopted draft decisions to take note of the report of the Secretary-General entitled “Information and communication technologies for development:  Progress in the implementation of General Assembly resolution 57/295”; and the report of the Administrator of the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) on the activities of the United Nations Development Fund for Women (UNIFEM).

By further draft decisions, the Assembly took note of the note by the Secretary-General transmitting the report of the Director-General of the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) on communication for development programmes in the United Nations; and the note by the Secretary-General transmitting the report of the Director-General of the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) on the implementation of resolution 57/249 of 20 December 2002 entitled “Culture and development”.

During today’s meeting, the representative of Benin spoke in explanation of the vote before the vote, while the representatives of Canada, Israel and Turkey spoke in explanation of vote after the vote.  A statement was also made by the representative of Chile.

The Assembly will hold its last plenary meeting on Thursday afternoon, at a time to be announced in the Journal, to consider pending matter as well as the reports of the Fifth Committee.

Background

The General Assembly met this morning to consider the reports of its Second Committee (Economic and Financial).

Reports of the Second Committee

The Committee’s report on “Strengthening of the coordination of humanitarian and disaster relief assistance of the United Nations, including special economic assistance:  special economic assistance to individual countries or regions” (document A/59/479) contains six draft resolutions.

Draft resolution I, on assistance to Mozambique, which the Committee approved without a vote on 17 November, would have the General Assembly encourage the Government of that country to continue fighting HIV/AIDS, malaria and tuberculosis, and to implement the National Action Plan for the Reduction of Absolute Poverty (2001-2005), as well as national development plans aimed at: achieving internationally agreed development goals, fighting absolute poverty, improving national capacity for education and governance, reducing the population’s vulnerability, and promoting economic growth and sustainable development.

Also by that text, the Assembly would stress the importance of international assistance for development programmes in Mozambique.  It would request that the Secretary-General make all necessary arrangements to continue mobilizing and coordinating humanitarian assistance from specialized United Nations agencies, as well as international assistance for national reconstruction and development.

By the terms of draft resolution II, on humanitarian and special economic assistance to Serbia and Montenegro, approved by the Committee without a vote on 7 December, the Assembly would urge the relevant authorities and the international community to support development assistance for the implementation of the National Strategy for Resolving Problems of Refugees and Internally Displaced Persons, national strategies for poverty reduction and other programmes to ensure that the needs of vulnerable refugees and internationally displaced were met.  It would also stress the need to create conditions that were conducive to their safe return, and emphasize the importance of regional cooperation in searching for solutions to their plight.  The Assembly would urge Government authorities in Serbia and Montenegro to develop national policies for durable solutions for internally displaced persons based on the Guiding Principles on Internal Displacement.

Further by that draft, the Assembly would call upon States, regional organizations, intergovernmental and non-governmental organizations, as well as other relevant bodies to continue to provide humanitarian assistance to alleviate the needs refugees and internally displaced persons, bearing in mind particularly the special needs of women, children, the elderly and other vulnerable groups.  It would encourage the Council of Ministers of Serbia and Montenegro in ensuring the transition from relief to long-term development, and call upon all States, regional organizations, intergovernmental and non-governmental organizations to support those efforts.

The General Assembly, by further terms, would call upon the Secretary-General and development agencies to continue mobilizing timely international development assistance to Serbia and Montenegro.  It would urge development partners to assist in capacity-building, institution-building and local employment generation in their programmes and to train and employ local staff to the maximum extent possible.  Further, it would urge the country and its development partners to strengthen initiatives contributing to the enhancement of social capital in health and education, which should emphasize the development of capacity to improve the quality of and access to those services.

Draft resolution III, on international assistance for the economic rehabilitation of Angola, approved by the Committee without a vote on 14 December, would have the Assembly call on international organizations and others in a position to do so to assist the Angolan Government in efforts to improve governance, transparency and accountability in managing public resources, including through the promotion of responsible business practices.  It would also call on Members States and international, regional and subregional organizations to provide financial and technical support for general elections in that country.

Also by that text, the Assembly would call upon Member States, particularly donors, to continue supporting the country’s remaining humanitarian needs, and to assist with the return and resettlement of refugees and internally displaced persons.  It would also request all international, regional and subregional financial institutions to support the Angolan Government in alleviating poverty; consolidating peace, democracy and economic stability throughout the country; and to assist in successfully implementing economic development programmes and strategies.

The Assembly would, by other terms, call upon the Angolan Government, the World Bank and the international community to remain engaged with the country’s poverty reduction strategy paper, with a view to its early endorsement by the World Bank and the Board of the International Monetary Fund, as well as to the continued support of the international community for Government efforts towards its implementation.  It would also request the Angolan Government and the United Nations, and invite international financial institutions to prepare and organize an international donors’ conference for long-term development and reconstruction, including special economic assistance.  Further, it would appeal to the international community, United Nations bodies, and governmental and non-governmental organizations to continue to contribute to Angola’s humanitarian mine-action activities.

According to draft resolution IV, on humanitarian assistance and rehabilitation for Ethiopia, approved by the Committee without a vote on 3 December, the Assembly would call on the international community to provide a timely response to the joint 2005 appeal for emergency food and non-food assistance to that country. It would also strongly encourage efforts by the Ethiopian Government, the international community and civil society to strengthen existing mechanisms to respond to such emergency situations.  It would also express appreciation of their endeavours to increase food availability through local produce procurement and to ensure access by needy households to food, health and water facilities, sanitation, seeds and veterinary services.

Also by that text, the Assembly would stress the need to address the underlying causes of food insecurity, issues of recovery, asset protection and the sustainable development of the affected areas.  It would welcome in that regard the programme prepared by the Coalition for Food Security in Ethiopia and encourage the international community to support the Coalition in breaking the cycle of food aid dependency in the next three to five years, thus enabling 15 million vulnerable people to engage in sustainable productive activities.  Further, the Assembly would call on development partners, in cooperation with the Government, to integrate relief efforts with recovery, asset protection and long-term development, including structural and productive options needed to stimulate accelerated rural growth.

Draft resolution V, on assistance for humanitarian relief and the economic and social rehabilitation of Somalia, approved without a vote by the Committee on 7 December, would have the Assembly urge the international community to provide the Somali people with humanitarian assistance and relief to alleviate the consequences of the prevailing drought.  It would call on the international community to provide continuing and increased assistance in response to the United Nations 2004 Consolidated Inter-Agency Appeal for relief, rehabilitation and reconstruction assistance.  The Assembly would also urge all concerned States and intergovernmental and non-governmental organizations to continue to implement further its resolutions aimed at helping the Somali people in rehabilitating basic social and economic services, as well as institution-building to restore civil governance structures throughout the country.

By other terms, the Assembly would urge the international community to provide political support to the new Transitional National Federal Government of Somalia; significant financial and technical support for rehabilitation and construction; and full support for peace-building measures, as well as speedy implementation of disarmament, demobilization and reintegration programmes to stabilize the country and ensure the Government’s effectiveness.  It would further urge the Transitional Federal Government, in coordination with the Intergovernmental Authority on Development (IGAD) and the African Union, to devise a strategy and timetable outlining functional priorities.

The Assembly would, by further terms, call upon the Secretary-General to continue mobilizing international humanitarian, rehabilitation and reconstruction assistance for Somalia.  It would call also upon all Somali parties to respect the security and safety of personnel of the United Nations, specialized agencies and non-governmental organizations, and to guarantee their complete freedom of movement and safe access.

By draft resolution VI, on assistance for the rehabilitation and reconstruction of Liberia, approved by the Committee without a vote on 3 December, the Assembly would call on all signatories to the 18 August 2003 Comprehensive Peace Agreement to uphold its provisions, promote socio-economic development and a culture of sustained peace in the country, and refrain from actions that may jeopardize the work of the National Transitional Government.  It would urge the National Transitional Government and all States to facilitate and support the return and reintegration of ex-combatants into their home communities, with special attention to children.

Further by the text, the Assembly would urge the National Transitional Government to create an environment conducive to the promotion of socio-economic development, peace and security, including a commitment to uphold the rule of law, national reconciliation and human rights, establish inclusive processes that would ensure free and fair presidential and general elections in October 2005 with maximum participation by the citizenry, as well as a commitment to ensure transparency in managing government expenditures and donor funds.  It would also invite the international community to provide financial and technical assistance to the National Transitional Government to facilitate those elections.

Information and Communication Technologies for Development

The Committee’s report on “Information and communication technologies for development” (document A/59/480) contains a draft resolution and two draft decisions.

A draft resolution on the World Summit on the Information Society, which the Committee approved without a vote on 24 November, would have the Assembly endorse the Declaration of Principles and the Plan of Action the Summit adopted on 12 December 2003, and stress the importance of the effective and timely implementation of the Plan of Action.  It would also urge Member States, the United Nations bodies, including the Information and Communication Technologies Task Force, and other intergovernmental organizations, non-governmental organizations, civil society and the private sector to actively help implement the Summit.  Further, it would call on the international community to make voluntary contributions to the special fund set up by the International Telecommunication Union to support Summit preparations.

Draft decision I, which was approved by the Committee without a vote on 24 November, would have the Assembly take note of the report of the Secretary-General entitled “Information and communication technologies for development: Progress in the implementation of General Assembly resolution 57/295”.  It would also request the Secretary-General to submit a further report on implementation of the strategy to the General Assembly at its sixtieth session.

By draft decision II, approved by the Committee without a vote on 7 December, the Assembly would take note of the note by the Secretary-General transmitting the report of the Director-General of the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) on communication for development programmes in the United Nations.

Macroeconomic Policy Questions

The Committee’s report on “Macroeconomic policy questions” (document A/58/481) is submitted in five parts.

Part II of the report (document A/59/481/Add.1) contains a draft resolution on international trade and development, which the Committee approved on 17 December in a recorded vote of 152 in favour to 2 against (Palau, United States), with 6 abstentions (Australia, Canada, Israel, Japan, New Zealand, Republic of Korea).  By its terms, the Assembly would stress the importance of an open, transparent, inclusive and democratic process, and of procedures for the effective functioning of the multilateral trading system that would allow for internal transparency and the effective participation of members.  Such a democratic process would allow the participants to have their vital interests duly reflected in the outcome of trade negotiations.

By other terms, the Assembly would emphasize that issues related to trade, debt and finance and transfer of technology duly covered in the World Trade Organization (WTO) Doha work programme should be addressed as a high priority in accordance with that programme and with the WTO General Council decision of 1 August 2004.  It would also stress the importance of facilitating the accession of all developing countries, particularly the least developed countries (LDCs) that applied for WTO membership, and call for the effective and faithful application of the WTO guidelines on LDC access.

Further by that text, the Assembly would emphasize that bilateral and regional trade arrangements should complement the goals of the multilateral trading system, and stress the importance of clarifying and improving disciplines and procedures under the existing WTO provisions applying to regional trade agreements.  It would urge the United Nations Conference on Trade and Development (UNCTAD) to provide technical inputs in that respect.

Also by that draft, the Assembly would stress that the adoption or enforcement of measures to protect human, animal or plant life should not be applied in a manner that would constitute arbitrary or unjustified discrimination or a disguised restriction on international trade, while recognizing the rights of WTO members to determine their own appropriate level of sanitary and phyto-sanitary protection.  It would recognize the need to facilitate the increased participation of developing countries in the work of relevant international standard-setting organizations, as well as the importance of providing financial and technical assistance and capacity-building efforts to enable them to respond adequately to the introduction of any new measures.

By other terms, the Assembly would call upon developed countries to work towards the objective of duty-free, quota-free market access for all least developed country exports.  Recognizing the special problems and needs of landlocked developing countries within a new global framework for transit transport cooperation, the Assembly would also call for the full and effective implementation of the Almaty Programme of Action and stress the need to implement UNCTAD’s 2004 Sao Paulo Consensus.  Further, it would emphasize the importance of addressing the concerns of several developing countries regarding the erosion of preferences and the impact of liberalization on their tariff revenues.

Further by the draft, the Assembly would stress the importance of strengthening the trade, investment and business environment through the adoption of domestic measures and conditions to encourage local, regional and international investment, as well as efforts to prevent and dismantle anti-competitive practices and promote responsibility and accountability among corporate actors at both the international and national levels.  It would also emphasize the importance of developing human, institutional, regulatory and research and development capacities and infrastructures aimed at enhanced supply-side capacity and competitiveness.

The Assembly would, by other terms, stress the importance of enhancing South-South trade and cooperation in the context of an emerging new trade geography complementing North-South trade and cooperation, and take note of the June 2004 decision to launch the third round of the Global System of Trade Preferences among Developing Countries.

Part III of the report (document A/59/481/Add.2) contains a draft resolution on the international financial system and development, which was approved by the Committee without a vote on 16 December.  By that text, the Assembly would underline the importance of national efforts to increase resilience to financial risk, and stress the importance of better assessment of a country’s debt burden, as well as its ability to service that debt in both crisis prevention and resolution.  It would also stress the importance of strong domestic institutions in promoting business activities and financial stability to achieve growth and development through sound macroeconomic policies as well as policies aimed at strengthening the regulatory systems of the corporate, financial and banking sectors.  It would stress, by further terms, that international cooperation initiatives in those areas should encourage flows of capital to developing countries.

Also by that draft, the Assembly would emphasize that it was essential to ensure the importance of effective and equitable participation by developing countries in formulating financial standards and codes, and underscore the need to ensure their implementation as a contribution to reducing vulnerability to financial crisis and contagion.  It would also call for continued efforts by multilateral financial institutions to provide policy advice, technical assistance and financial support to member countries, to work on the basis of nationally owned reform and development strategies, to pay due regard to the special needs and implementing capacities of developing countries and countries with economies in transition, and to minimize the negative impacts of adjustment programmes on the vulnerable segments of society.

By other terms, the Assembly would stress the need to continuously improve standards of corporate and public-sector governance, including accounting, auditing and measures to ensure transparency.  It would also strongly encourage leading bond-issuing countries and the private sector to make substantial progress on the preparation of an effective code of conduct, bearing in mind the need not to preclude emergency financing in times of crisis, to promote fair burden-sharing and to minimize moral hazard.

Part IV of the report (document A/59/481/Add.3) contains a draft resolution on external debt crisis and development, which the Committee approved without a vote on 7 December.  By its terms, the Assembly would stress that debt relief could play a key role in liberating resources for poverty eradication, economic growth and sustainable development.  It would also stress the importance of continued flexibility in eligibility criteria for the Heavily Indebted Poor Countries (HIPC) Debt Initiative and encourage the exploration of mechanisms to address the debt problems of those countries, such as debt-for-sustainable development swaps, or multicreditor debt swap arrangements.

By further terms of that text, the Assembly would stress the importance of promoting responsible lending and borrowing, as well as the need to help countries that had reached the completion point of the Heavily Indebted Poor Countries (HIPC) Debt Initiative, but failed to achieve lasting debt sustainability, to avoid a build-up of unsustainable debt.  It would call on heavily indebted poor countries to improve their domestic policies and economic management, and create a domestic environment conducive to private sector development, economic growth and poverty reduction.

Also by that draft, the Assembly would stress the need for the World Bank and International Monetary Fund (IMF) to keep the overall implications of the framework for low-income countries under review, and call for transparency in the computation of country policy and institutional assessment.  It would also stress the need to continue assisting post-conflict countries to achieve initial reconstruction for economic and social development.  The Assembly would also strongly encourage leading bond issuing countries and the private sector to make substantial progress in preparing an effective code of conduct, bearing in mind the need to include emergency financing in times of crisis, promote fair burden-sharing and minimize moral hazard.

By other terms of that text, the Assembly would stress the dependence of debt sustainability on various international and national factors, underscoring that no single indicator should be used to make definitive judgements about debt sustainability.  It would emphasize that country-specific circumstances and the impact of external shocks should be taken into account in debt sustainability analyses, and invite the IMF and the World Bank to consider fundamental changes caused by, among other factors, natural disasters, conflicts and changes in global growth prospects or trade in assessing debt sustainability.

Part V of the report (document A/59/481/Add.4) contains a draft resolution on commodities, which was approved without a vote by the Committee on 16 December.  Prior to the Committee’s consensus action on that draft, it approved the retention of operative paragraph 12 by a recorded vote of 149 in favour to 1 against (United States), with 2 abstentions (Canada, Israel).  By the terms of that text, the Assembly would emphasize the need to encourage diversification, liberalization of trade and exports, and enhanced competitiveness by developing countries that were heavily dependent on primary commodities.

By other terms of that draft, the Assembly would encourage developing countries to formulate specific commodity policies to contribute to the facilitation of trade expansion, reduction of vulnerability, and improvement of livelihoods and food security by creating an enabling environment encouraging the participation of rural producers and small farmers; continuing the diversification of the commodity sector and enhancing its competitiveness in heavily commodity-dependent developing countries; as well as increasing technology development and improving information systems, institutions and human resources.

Also by that text, the Assembly would emphasize the importance of official development assistance (ODA) for agriculture and rural development, and invite developing countries to prioritize agriculture and rural development in their national development strategies and programmes.  It would call on developed countries to work towards providing duty-free and quota-free market access for least-developed-country products, and encourage developing countries to contribute to improved market access for least developed countries.

Expressing regret that schemes to mitigate earnings shortfalls had not reached the originally envisaged goals, the Assembly would also urge governments and international financial organizations to continue assessing the effectiveness of systems for compensatory financing of shortfalls in export earning, and stress the importance of empowering developing-country commodity producers to insure themselves against risk, including natural disasters.

The Assembly would, by other terms, call on the United Nations Conference on Trade and Development (UNCTAD) to work in cooperation with interested stakeholders for the effective operation of the International Task Force on Commodities launched at the eleventh session of UNCTAD.  It would underline the need to strengthen the Common Fund for Commodities and encourage it to continue strengthening activities covered by its Second Account in developing countries with its supply chain concept of improving access to markets and reliability of supply, enhancing diversification and addition of value, improving the competitiveness of commodities, strengthening the market chain, improving market structures, broadening the export base and ensuring the effective participation of all stakeholders.

Follow-up to and Implementation of the Outcome of the International Conference on Financing for Development

The Committee’s report on “Follow-up to and implementation of the outcome of the International Conference on Financing for Development” (document A/59/482) contains a draft resolution on follow-up to and Implementation of the Outcome of the International Conference on Financing for Development, which was approved by the Committee without a vote on 16 December.  By that text, the Assembly would stress the importance of full involvement by all relevant stakeholders in the implementation of the Monterrey Consensus arising from that Conference, and stress the importance of their full participation in the Monterrey follow-up process.

Further by that draft, the Assembly would underline the importance of implementing the commitment to sound policies, good governance and the rule of law; the commitment to create an enabling environment for mobilizing domestic resources and the importance of sound economic policies, solid democratic institutions responsive to the needs of people and improved infrastructure as a basis for sustained economic growth, poverty eradication and employment creation; and the commitment to enhance the coherence and consistency of international monetary, financial and trading systems.

Also by that text, the Assembly would stress that debt relief could play a key role in liberating resources for activities consistent with poverty eradication, achieving sustained economic growth and sustainable development, as well as achieving internationally agreed development goals.  It would, by other terms, stress the importance of promoting responsible lending and borrowing and the need to help Heavily Indebted Poor Countries to manage their borrowings and avoid a build-up of unsustainable debt, including through the use of grants.  It would also stress the importance of advancing efforts to reform the international financial architecture, and encourage the International Monetary Fund (IMF) and World Bank to continue examining the issues of the voice and effective participation of developing countries and countries with economies in transition in their decision-making processes.

Recalling the commitments made at the International Conference on Financing for Development to increase the levels and effectiveness of official development assistance (ODA), the Assembly would also urge developed countries that had not yet done so to make concrete efforts towards the target of 0.7 per cent of gross national product as official assistance to developing countries, and 0.15 to 0.20 per cent of gross to least developed countries.  Developing countries would be encouraged to continue to build on progress achieved in ensuring that the ODA was used effectively to help achieve development goals and targets.

Sustainable Development

The Committee’s report on “Sustainable development” (document A/59/483) is submitted in nine parts.

Part I of the report contains a draft resolution on the report of the Governing Council of the United Nations Environment Programme on its eighth special session, which the Committee approved without a vote on 14 December.  By that text, the Assembly would emphasize the need for the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP) to further contribute to sustainable development programmes, to the implementation of Agenda 21 and the Johannesburg Plan of Implementation at all levels, and to the work of the Commission on Sustainable Development.

Further by that draft, the Assembly would call on all countries to further engage in negotiations for an intergovernmental strategic plan for technology support and capacity-building with a view to its adoption at the February 2005 session of the UNEP Governing Council.  It would also emphasize the need to further enhance coordination and cooperation among relevant United Nations organizations in promoting the environmental dimension of sustainable development.

By other terms, the Assembly would call upon the UNEP to continue contributing to preparations for the International Meeting to Review the Implementation of the Programme of Action for the Sustainable Development of Small Island Developing States, to be held in Mauritius from 10 to 14 January 2005.  Further, it would reiterate the need for stable, adequate and predictable financial resources for the UNEP, and underline the need to consider adequate reflection of all administrative and management costs of the Programme in the context of the United Nations regular budget.

Part II of the report (document A/59/483/Add.1) contains two draft resolutions. Draft I, on implementation of Agenda 21, the Programme for the Further Implementation of Agenda 21 and the outcomes of the World Summit on Sustainable Development) was approved by the Committee without a vote on 3 December.  By its terms, the Assembly would call upon governments, relevant international and regional organizations, the Economic and Social Council, United Nations bodies, international financial institutions, the Global Environment Facility and other intergovernmental organizations and major groups to ensure the effective implementation of and follow-up to the commitments, programmes and time-bound targets adopted at the World Summit on Sustainable Development (Johannesburg, 2002).

Further by that text, the Assembly would encourage governments to participate with representatives from relevant departments and agencies in water, sanitation and human settlements and finance, in the intergovernmental preparatory meeting for the thirteenth session of the Commission on Sustainable Development.  It would also invite donor countries to consider supporting the participation in that session of developing-country experts in water, sanitation and human settlements.

The text would further have the Assembly request that the Secretary-General submit thematic reports on water, sanitation and human settlements to the Commission’s thirteenth session.  The Assembly would stress the importance of the Commission’s taking policy decisions on measures and options to expedite implementation in the thematic cluster of water, sanitation and human settlements; and mobilizing further action by all implementation actors to overcome obstacles in implementing Agenda 21, the Programme for the Further Implementation of Agenda 21, and the Johannesburg Plan of Implementation.

Draft resolution II, on activities undertaken during the International Year of Freshwater, 2003, preparations for the International Decade for Action, “Water for Life”, 2005-2015, and further efforts to achieve the sustainable development of water resources was approved by the Committee without a vote on 3 December.  By that text, the Assembly called on the United Nations system to step up efforts to make the International Decade for Action, “Water for Life,” 2005-2015, a decade of delivering promises through the use of existing resources and voluntary funds.

Further by that draft, the Assembly would underscore the importance of maintaining the El Niño/Southern Oscillation observation system, continuing research into extreme weather, improving forecasting skills and developing policies for reducing the impact of the El Niño phenomenon and other extreme weather events.  It would also encourage MemberStates, the Secretariat, organizations of the United Nations system and major groups to continue their efforts to achieve the internationally agreed water-related goals set forth in Agenda 21, the Programme for the Further Implementation of Agenda 21, the Millennium Declaration and the Johannesburg Plan of Implementation.

Part III of the report (document A/59/483/Add.2) contains two draft resolutions.  Draft I, on further implementation of the Programme of Action for the Sustainable Development of Small Island Developing States, was approved by the Committee without a vote on 5 November.  By its terms, the Assembly would decide to hold two days of informal consultations in Mauritius, on 8 and 9 January 2005, to prepare for the International Meeting to Review the Implementation of the Programme of Action for the Sustainable Development of Small Island Developing States, to be held in Mauritius from 10 to 14 January 2005.

Also by that text, the Assembly would urge the highest level of participation at the International Meeting.  It would request the Secretary-General to strengthen the Small Island Developing States Unit in the Department of Economic and Social Affairs, so that it could support the full implementation of the Declaration of Barbados, the Programme of Action for the Sustainable Development of Small Island Developing States and the outcomes of the International Meeting.

Draft resolution II, on promoting an integrated management approach to the Caribbean Sea area in the context of sustainable development, was approved by the Committee without a vote on 16 November.  Prior to the Committee’s consensus on that text, the Committee approved preambular paragraph 14 of the text in a recorded vote of 121 votes in favour, to 1 against (United States) and 3 abstentions (Côte d’Ivoire, Ethiopia, Japan).

According to its terms, the Assembly would call upon the United Nations to help Caribbean countries protect the Caribbean Sea from degradation due to ship pollution, especially illegal oil spills and other harmful substances, and from the accidental release of hazardous waste, including radioactive materials, nuclear waste and dangerous chemicals.  It would also encourage further efforts toward regional cooperation to address land-based pollution, pollution from ships, physical impacts on coral reefs, and the dynamic interaction of socio-economic activities for the use of coastal areas and the marine environment.

By other terms of that text, the Assembly would call upon States to prioritize action on marine pollution from land-based sources as part of their national sustainable development strategies and programmes, and to advance implementation of the Global Programme of Action for the Protection of the Marine Environment from Land-based Activities and the Montreal Declaration on the Protection of the Marine Environment from Land-based Activities.

Further by that draft, the Assembly would call upon States to develop national, regional and international programmes to halt the loss of marine biodiversity in the Caribbean Sea, particularly fragile ecosystems such as coral reefs.  It would also support efforts by Caribbean States to implement sustainable fisheries management programmes by strengthening the Caribbean Regional Fisheries Mechanism.

Part IV of the report (document A/59/483/Add.3) contains three draft resolutions. Draft I, on the international strategy for disaster reduction, approved by the Committee without a vote on 15 November, would have the Assembly call for strong national strategies for disaster prevention and management, as well as resource sharing, to gain insight into the causes of such catastrophes worldwide.  It would also encourage the international community to fill the coffers of the Strategy’s Trust Fund and provide adequate financial, scientific, technical, human and other assistance to support the Inter-Agency Task Force for Disaster Reduction and its secretariat.

Further by the draft, the Assembly would stress the importance of identifying, assessing and managing the risk of disasters before they occurred, and strengthening national abilities to cope with them by sharing experiences and transferring technical knowledge, as well as through improved access to relevant data and information, and stronger institutional arrangements.  Further, it would call on governments to set up national platforms for disaster reduction or strengthen already existing ones, and urge the United Nations to support those mechanisms.

By draft resolution II, on international cooperation to reduce the impact of the El Niño phenomenon, which the Committee approved without a vote on 5 November, the Assembly would call on the Secretary-General and relevant United Nations bodies, particularly those taking part in the International Strategy for Disaster Reduction, to support the International Centre for the Study of the El Niño Phenomenon.  It would invite the international community to provide scientific, technical and financial support for that purpose, and strengthen other centres studying the El Niño phenomenon.

Further by that text, the Assembly would encourage the Centre to strengthen its links with national meteorological and hydrological services in Latin America, the Permanent Commission for the South Pacific, the Inter-American Institute for Climate Prediction and other relevant regional and global organizations studying climate to ensure the effective use of available resources.

Draft resolution III, on natural disasters and vulnerability, approved by the Committee without a vote on 24 November, would have the Assembly stress the importance for the World Conference on Disaster Reduction to conclude the review of the Yokohama Strategy for a Safer World and its plan of action with a view to updating the guiding framework on disaster reduction for the twenty-first century.  It was also important to identify specific activities aimed at ensuring the implementation of relevant provisions of the Plan of Implementation of the World Summit on Sustainable Development on vulnerability, risk assessment and disaster management.

The Assembly would stress, by other terms, the need for close cooperation and coordination among governments, the United Nations system and other organizations, taking into account the need to develop disaster-management strategies, including the effective establishment of early warning systems while taking advantage of all available resources and expertise.  It would also emphasize that the World Conference on Disaster Reduction should make concrete recommendations to reduce the risks and vulnerabilities of developing countries to disasters, including through the strengthening of national platforms for disaster reduction or the establishment of institutional mechanisms.

Further by that text, the Assembly would encourage governments to strengthen capacity-building in the most vulnerable regions, to enable them to address the socio-economic factors that increase vulnerability, and to develop measures that would enable them to prepare for and cope with natural disasters, including those associated with earthquakes and extreme weather.  It would encourage the Conference of the Parties to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change and the parties to the Kyoto Protocol to address the adverse effects of climate change, especially in developing countries that were particularly vulnerable.

Part V of the report (document A/59/483/Add.4) contains a draft resolution on protection of global climate for present and future generations of mankind, which the Committee approved without a vote on 24 November.  By that text, the Assembly would call on States to work together in achieving the ultimate goals of the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change.  It would also invite conferences of the parties to multilateral environmental conventions to consider the schedules of the General Assembly and the Commission on Sustainable Development when setting their meeting dates, so as to ensure adequate representation of developing countries.

Part VI of the report (document A/59/483/Add.5) contains a draft resolution on the United Nations Convention to Combat Desertification in Those Countries Experiencing Serious Drought and/or Desertification, Particularly in Africa, which was approved by the Committee without a vote on 24 November.  By its terms, the Assembly would stress the importance of implementing the Convention in order to meet internationally agreed development goals, including those contained in the United Nations Millennium Declaration.  It would call upon governments, in collaboration with multilateral organizations, including the Global Environmental Facility implementation agencies, to integrate desertification into their plans and strategies for sustainable development.

The draft would also have the Assembly call upon governments and invite multilateral financial institutions, regional development banks, regional economic integration organizations and all other interested parties, including non-governmental organizations and the private sector, to contribute to the Convention’s General Fund, Supplementary Fund and Special Fund.  Further, the Assembly would urge United Nations bodies, the Bretton Woods institutions and donors to integrate action backing the Convention into their programmes and strategies to achieve the Millennium Development Goals.

Part VII of the report (document A/59/483/Add.6) contains a draft resolution on the Convention on Biological Diversity, which the Committee approved without a vote on 3 December. By that draft, the Assembly would encourage developed-country parties to the Convention to contribute to its trust funds, in particular so as to enhance full developing-country participation in all its activities.  It would urge the States parties to facilitate technology transfer for the effective implementation of the Convention.

Further by that text, the Assembly would stress the importance of harmonizing the reporting requirements of biodiversity-related conventions, while respecting their independent legal status.  It would invite countries that had not yet done so to ratify or accede to the Convention, and further invite parties that had not yet ratified or acceded to the Convention’s Cartagena Protocol on Biosafety to consider doing so.

Part VIII of the report (document A/59/483/Add.7) contains a draft resolution on the United Nations Decade of Education for Sustainable Development, which was approved by the Committee without a vote on 5 November.  By its terms, the Assembly encouraged governments to include measures to implement the Decade in their educational strategies and national development plans, considering the finalized International Implementation Scheme.

Also by that text, the Assembly would invite governments to promote public awareness of the Decade by cooperating with civil society and other relevant stakeholders.  It would also call on the Director-General of the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) to prepare a mid-term review of implementation of the Decade for submission to the General Assembly at its sixty-fifth session.

Part IX of the report (document A/59/483/Add.8) contains a draft resolution on rendering assistance to the poor mountain countries to overcome obstacles in socio-economic and ecological areas”, approved by the Committee without a vote on 14 December, which would have the Assembly decide to consider the sub-item at its sixtieth session under the agenda item “sustainable development”.

Implementation of the Outcome of the United Nations Conference on Human Settlements (Habitat II) and the Strengthening of the United Nations Human Settlements Programme (United Nations-HABITAT)

The Committee’s report on “Implementation of the Outcome of the United Nations Conference on Human Settlements (Habitat II) and the Strengthening of the United Nations Human Settlements Programme (United Nations-HABITAT)” (document A/59/484) contains a draft resolution on implementation of the outcome of the United Nations Conference on Human Settlements (Habitat II) and strengthening of the United Nations Human Settlements Programme (UN-Habitat), which was approved by the Committee without a vote on 24 November.  By its terms, the Assembly would call for increased financial support to UN-Habitat, particularly non-earmarked contributions, to the UN-Habitat Foundation and its upgrading facility, and would invite governments to provide multi-year funding to support programme implementation.  It would also call upon the international donor community and financial institutions to contribute generously to the Technical Cooperation Trust Fund and the Special Human Settlements Programme for the Palestinian people.

Further by that text, the Assembly would urge the donor community to support developing-country efforts to make pro-poor investments in services and infrastructure, particularly for slum upgrading.  It would encourage governments to set up local, national and regional urban observatories and financially support UN-Habitat to improve data collection, analysis and dissemination.  Further, it would request that UN-Habitat continue to help countries affected by natural disasters and complex emergencies to set up rehabilitation and reconstruction programmes, as well as work closely with other United Nations agencies.

Globalization and Interdependence

The Committee’s report on “Globalization and Interdependence” (document A/59/485) is submitted in six parts.

Part II of the report (document A/59/485/Add.1) contains a draft resolution on the role of the United Nations in promoting development in the context of globalization and interdependence, which was approved by the Committee without a vote on 16 December.  By its terms, the Assembly would stress that improved coherence between national and international efforts, and between the international monetary, financial and trading systems was fundamental for sound global economic governance.  It would further emphasize that development should be at the centre of the international economic agenda and that coherence between national development strategies, on the one hand, and international obligations and commitments, on the other, contributed to the creation of an enabling economic environment for development.

Further by that draft, the Assembly would stress that development strategies must be formulated with a view to minimizing the negative social impact of globalization and maximizing its positive impact, while ensuring that all population groups benefited from it.  It would underline that it was for each government to evaluate the trade-off between the benefits of accepting international rules and commitments and the constraints posed by the loss of policy space, and that it was particularly important for developing countries that all countries take into account the need for appropriate balance between national policy space and international disciplines and commitments.

The Assembly would, by other terms, stress the importance of migration as a phenomenon accompanying increased globalization, including its impact on economies, and underline further the need for greater coordination and cooperation among countries as well as relevant regional and international organizations.  It would also emphasize the importance of recognizing and addressing the specific concerns of countries with economies in transition to help them benefit from globalization, with a view to their full integration into the world economy.

Further by that draft, the Assembly would stress the need to build an inclusive information society, and that national efforts needed support by effective international and regional cooperation among governments, the private sector, civil society and other stakeholders, including international financial institutions, to assist in bridging the “digital divide”, promoting access to information and communication technologies, creating digital opportunities and harnessing the potential of information and communication technologies for development.

By other terms, the Assembly would urge all governments to ensure women’s equal rights with men as well as their full and equal access to education, training, employment, technology and economic and financial resources, including credit, particularly for rural women and those in the informal sector, and to facilitate the transition of women from the informal to the formal sector.

Part III of the report (document A/59/485/Add.2) contains a draft resolution on international migration and development, which was approved by the Committee without a vote on 3 December.  That draft would have the Assembly call on all relevant United Nations bodies as well as intergovernmental, regional and subregional organizations to continue addressing international migration and development, with a view to integrating migration issues more coherently in implementing agreed economic and social development goals.  It would also encourage governments of origin, transit and destination countries to increase cooperation on migration-related issues.

Also by that text, the Assembly would reaffirm the need to adopt policies and undertake measures to reduce the cost of transferring migrant remittances to developing countries.  Further, it would reconfirm that the Secretary-General would report to the Assembly’s sixtieth session on organizational details of the 2006 high-level dialogue on international migration and development.

Part IV of the report (document A/59/485/Add.3) contains a draft resolution on preventing and combating corrupt practices and the transfer of funds of illicit origin and returning such assets to the countries of origin, which the Committee approved without a vote on 14 December.  By that draft, the Assembly would call for further international cooperation to support national, subregional and regional efforts to prevent and combat corrupt practices, consistent with the United Nations Convention against Corruption.  Condemning corruption in all its forms, including bribery, money-laundering and the transfer of assets of illicit origin, it would reiterate its invitation to all MemberStates and competent regional economic organizations to sign, ratify and fully implement the Convention against Corruption as soon as possible to ensure its rapid entry into force.

Further by that text, the Assembly would encourage Member States to provide adequate financial and human resources to the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime, and encourage that Office to give high priority to technical cooperation to promote and facilitate the signing and ratification, acceptance approval or accession and implementation of the Convention against Corruption.  It would also encourage Member States that had not yet done so to require financial institutions to properly implement comprehensive due diligence and vigilance programmes, consistent with the principles of the Convention and other applicable instruments.

Also by that draft, the Assembly would urge Member States to abide by the principles of proper management of public affairs and public property, fairness, responsibility and equality before the law and the need to safeguard integrity and foster a culture of transparency, accountability and rejection of corruption.  It would also call on the private sector, at both the national and international levels, including small and large companies and transnational corporations, to remain fully engaged in the fight against corruption, and emphasize the need for all stakeholders to continue promoting corporate responsibility and accountability.

Part V of the report (document A/59/484/Add.4) contains a draft decision on culture and development, by which the Assembly would take note of the note by the Secretary-General transmitting the report of the Director-General of the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) on the implementation of resolution 57/249 of 20 December 2002 entitled “Culture and development”.

Part VI of the report (document A/59/485/Add.5) contains a draft resolution on integration of the economies in transition into the world economy, which was approved by the Committee without a vote on 7 December.  By its terms, the Assembly would call upon organizations of the United Nations system, and invite the Bretton Woods institutions, to continue conducting analysis, and providing policy advice, as well as targeted and substantial technical assistance, to transition-country governments to strengthen their social, legal and political frameworks for completing market-oriented reforms, supporting national development priorities to sustain positive trends and reverse declines in economic and social development.

Also by that text, the Assembly would emphasize the importance of further integrating transition economies into the world economy, taking into account the relevant provisions of the Monterrey Consensus of the International Conference on Financing for Development, the Johannesburg Declaration on Sustainable Development and the Plan of Implementation of the World Summit on Sustainable Development.  It would stress, by other terms, the need to focus international assistance on transition economies facing particular difficulties in socio-economic development, implementing market-oriented reforms and meeting internationally agreed development goals.

Groups of Countries in Special Situations

The Committee’s report on “Groups of countries in special situations” (document A/59/486) is submitted in three parts.

Part II of the report (document A/59/486/Add.1) contains a draft resolution on the Third United Nations Conference on Least Developed Countries (LDCs), which was approved by the Committee without a vote on 16 December.  By its terms, the Assembly would urge the LDCs and their bilateral and multilateral development partners to increase efforts to meet the targets of the Programme of Action in a timely manner.  It would request the Secretary-General to engage the United Nations Development Group team leaders in the coordinated implementation of activities of the Brussels Programme of Action.

Further by that text, the Assembly would invite the 2005 high-level event to address the special needs of least developed countries, and decide to hold the comprehensive review of the Brussels Programme of Action in 2006 within the General Assembly during its sixty-first session.  It would also decide to consider modalities for conducting that comprehensive review during its sixtieth session.

Also by that draft, the Secretary-General would be requested to establish a specific trust fund –- to be funded by voluntary contributions -- for the travel and subsistence of two representatives from each the LDC to attend the annual review of the Programme of Action, while Member States, intergovernmental and non-governmental organizations and the private sector would be called upon to make such voluntary contributions.  Finally, the Assembly would invite the UNCTAD to conduct an analysis of the role that enterprise could play in alleviating poverty in least developed countries and to recommend measures that their Governments could take to promote private-sector development.

Part III of the report (document A/59/486/Add.2) contains a draft resolution on specific actions related to the particular needs and problems of landlocked developing countries:  outcome of the International Ministerial Conference of Landlocked and Transit Developing Countries and Donor Countries and International Financial and Development Institutions on Transit Transport Cooperation, which was approved by the Committee without a vote on 7 December.  By its terms, the Assembly would emphasize that assistance to improve transit facilities and services should be integrated into the overall economic development strategies of landlocked developing countries, and that donors should take into account the requirements for the long-term restructuring of the economies of landlocked developing countries.

By other terms, the Assembly would emphasize that the examination of issues relating to the trade of small, vulnerable economies, and the framing of responses to those trade-related issues should be actively pursued, consistent with the Doha work programme, considering the particular needs of landlocked developing countries within a new global framework for transit transport cooperation.  It would also invite donors, the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) and multilateral financial and development institutions to give landlocked and transit developing countries appropriate financial and technical assistance to construct, maintain and improve their transport, storage and other transit-related facilities, including alternative routes and improved communications.  The Assembly would invite them to promote subregional, regional and interregional projects, and consider improving the availability and optimal use of different transport modes and intermodal efficiency along transport corridors.

Also by the text, the Assembly would invite the relevant United Nations bodies and other international organizations, including regional commissions, the United Nations Conference on Trade and Development (UNCTAD), the World Bank, and the World Customs Organization, to integrate the Almaty Programme of action into their work programmes, and encourage them to continue supporting landlocked and transit developing countries through well-coordinated and coherent technical assistance programmes in transit transport.  Further, it would invite donors and the international financial and development institutions to make voluntary contributions to the trust fund set up by the Secretary-General to support activities for the follow-up to the implementation of the outcome of the Almaty International Conference.

Eradication of Poverty and Other Development Issues

The Committee’s report on “Eradication of poverty and other development issues” (document A/59/487) is submitted in four parts.

Part II of the report (document A/59/487/Add.1) contains two draft resolutions.  Draft I, on the role of microcredit and microfinance in the eradication of poverty, approved by the Committee without a vote on 14 December, would have the Assembly emphasize that the International Year of Microcredit would provide a significant opportunity to raise awareness of microcredit’s importance in poverty eradication, sharing of good practices and enhancing pro-poor financial-sector services.

Also by that text, the Assembly would reiterate its invitation to Member States, relevant organizations of the United Nations system, non-governmental organizations, the private sector and civil society to collaborate, including through making voluntary contributions, to raise public awareness and knowledge about microcredit.  It would also decide to devote one plenary meeting at its sixty-first session to the outcome and follow-up to the Year, with a view to broadening and deepening discussion on the issue.

By the terms of draft II, on implementation of the first United Nations Decade for the Eradication of Poverty (1997-2006), approved by the Committee without a vote on 16 December, the Assembly would stress the importance of enhanced and predictable aid flows to ensure the sustainability of the development and poverty eradication efforts of developing countries.  It would also urge countries to direct resources freed through debt relief, particularly through debt cancellation and reduction, towards poverty eradication activities, sustainable economic growth, sustainable development and internationally agreed development goals.

Also by that text, the Assembly would call upon developed countries to promote capacity-building and facilitate access to and transfer of technologies and corresponding knowledge on favourable terms, including concessional and preferential terms.  It would also emphasize the critical role of both formal and non-formal education, especially for girls, in empowering those living in poverty.  Further, it would urge governments and the international community to give urgent priority to combating HIV/AIDS, malaria, tuberculosis and other infectious, contagious diseases, and emphasize the link between poverty eradication and improving access to safe drinking water, and stress the objective to halve by 2015 the proportion of people who were unable to reach or afford safe drinking water and the proportion of those without access to basic sanitation.

Calling upon the Governments of LDCs and their development partners to implement commitments contained in the Brussels Declaration and the Programme of Action for the Least Developed Countries for the Decade 2001-2010, the Assembly would also stress the importance of implementing commitments taken specifically regarding the special needs of landlocked developing countries.  It would further recognize the special problems and needs of the landlocked developing countries within a new global framework for transit-transport cooperation for landlocked and transit developing countries and call, in that regard, for the full and effective implementation of the Almaty Programme of Action.

The Assembly would, by other terms, stress the vulnerabilities of the small island developing States and support the holding of the International Meeting to Review the Implementation of the Programme of Action for the Sustainable Development of Small Island Developing States in Mauritius from 10 to 14 January 2005.  It would also call on MemberStates and the international community, and invite the United Nations system, to continue to support the New Partnership for Africa’s Development (NEPAD), aimed at eradicating poverty and promoting sustainable development on the basis of African ownership and leadership and enhanced partnership with the international community.

Part III of the report (document A/59/487/Add.2) contains a draft resolution on the World Survey on the Role of Women in Development, which the Committee approved without a vote on 7 December.  By its terms, the Assembly would take note of the Secretary-General’s report entitled “World Survey on the Role of Women in Development”, which focuses on women and international migration, and decide to consider the report at its sixtieth session under the sub-item entitled “Women in development”.  It would also request the Secretary-General to update the Survey for consideration by the General Assembly at its sixty-fourth session, noting that the document should continue to focus on selected emerging development themes, to be identified at the sixtieth session, that have an impact on women’s role in national, regional and international economies.

Part IV of the report (document A/59/487/Add.3) contains a draft resolution on industrial development cooperation, which was approved by the Committee without a vote on 14 December.  By that text, the Assembly would emphasize the need for favourable international and national measures to industrialize developing countries and urge governments to implement development policies and strategies for productivity growth through private sector development, diffusion of environmentally sound and emerging technologies, investment promotion, enhanced access to markets and effective use of official development assistance, so that developing countries could achieve the Millennium Development Goals.

Further by that text, the Assembly would emphasize the need to promote the development of micro, small and medium-sized enterprises, including by training, education and skills enhancement, with a special focus on agro-industry as a provider of livelihoods, as well as in landlocked developing countries.  Stressing the need for the United Nations Industrial Development Organization (UNIDO) to promote the development of competitive industries in developing countries, as well as those with economies in transition and landlocked developing countries, the Assembly would underline the importance of industrial development cooperation and of a positive investment and business climate at the international, regional, subregional and national levels to expand, diversify, and modernize their productive capacities.

Also by that text, the Assembly would call upon UNIDO to actively participate in field coordination through the common country assessment and the United Nations Development Assistance Framework process, as well as sector-wide approaches.  It would also call upon donor and recipient countries to cooperate in achieving greater efficiency and effectiveness of official development assistance resources for industrial development cooperation, and to support developing and transition countries in promoting industrial development cooperation among themselves.  Further, it would underline the importance of mobilizing funds for industrial development at the country level, including private and development finance institutions funding.

Operational Activities for Development

The Committee’s report on “Operational activities for development” (document A/59/488) is submitted in two parts.

Part II of the report (document A/59/488/Add.1) contains a draft resolution and a draft decision.

Draft resolution A, on the triennial comprehensive policy review of operational activities for development of the United Nations system, was approved by the Committee without a vote on 16 December.  By its terms, the Assembly would stress that the purpose of reform was to make the development system more efficient and effective in support of developing countries’ achievement of internationally agreed development goals, and request the United Nations system to continue efforts to respond to national development plans, policies and priorities, which constituted the only viable frame of reference for programming operational activities at the country level.

Also by that text, the Assembly would call upon donor countries to increase substantially their contributions to the core/regular budgets of the United Nations development system, and invite the governing bodies of development organizations to systematically address the funding of their operational activities.  It would also urge all organizations of the development system to intensify inter-agency information sharing at the system-wide level, and strengthen the capacity of developing countries better to utilize the various aid modalities, including system-wide approaches and budget support.

Further by that draft, the Assembly would also stress that developing countries should have access to new and emerging technologies, which required technology transfer, technical cooperation and the building of scientific and technological capacity.  It would also urge members of the Executive Group of the United Nations Development Group to develop a procedure for the common assessment of resident coordinators’ performance, and request the Secretary-General to develop, by the end of 2005, a comprehensive accountability framework for resident coordinators.

By other terms, the Assembly would strongly encourage country-level evaluations of the United Nations Development Assistance Framework (UNDAF) at the end of the programming cycle, and stress the need to assist governments to development national evaluation capacities.  It would also call upon the organizations of the development system, the regional commissions and other regional and subregional entities to intensify their cooperation and adopt collaborative approaches to support country-level development initiatives.  Further, the Assembly would urge organizations and bodies of the United Nations system to support South-South cooperation, and celebrate the related United Nations Day every year.

By the terms of draft decision B, approved without a vote by the Committee on 16 December, the Assembly would take note of the report of the Administrator of the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) on the activities of the United Nations Development Fund for Women (UNIFEM).

Permanent Sovereignty of the Palestinian People in the Occupied Palestinian Territory, including East Jerusalem, and of the Arab Population in the Occupied Syrian Golan over their Natural Resources

The Committee’s report on “Permanent Sovereignty of the Palestinian People in the Occupied Palestinian Territory, including East Jerusalem, and of the Arab Population in the Occupied Syrian Golan over their Natural Resources” (document A/59/489) contains a draft resolution on permanent sovereignty of the Palestinian People in the Occupied Palestinian Territory, including East Jerusalem, and of the Arab Population in the Occupied Syrian Golan over their natural resources.  The text was approved by the Committee on 24 November in a recorded vote of 144 in favour to 4 against (Federated States of Micronesia, Israel, Marshall Islands, the United States), with 8 abstentions (Albania, Australia, Cameroon, Côte d’Ivoire, Dominican Republic, Haiti, Tuvalu, Vanuatu).

By the terms of that draft, the Assembly would call on Israel not to exploit, damage, cause loss, deplete or endanger natural resources in those territories.  It would also reaffirm the inalienable rights of the Palestinian people and the population of the occupied Syrian Golan over their natural resources, including land and water.  Further, it would recognize the Palestinian right to claim restitution due to exploitation, damage, loss, depletion, or endangerment of their natural resources, and express hope that the issue would be dealt with in the final status negotiations between Palestinians and Israelis.

Training and Research

The Committee’s report on “Training and research (document A/59/490) is submitted in three parts.

Part II of the report (document A/59/490/Add.1) contains a draft resolution on the United Nations Institute for Training and Research, which the Committee approved without a vote on 14 December.  By that draft, the Assembly would underline the need to further develop and expand training programme partnerships with United Nations bodies.  It would also request the Institute’s Board of Trustees to ensure fair and equitable geographic distribution and transparency in the preparation of programmes and the employment of experts, and stress that Institute courses should focus primarily on development issues and international affairs management.

Further by that text, the Assembly would encourage the Board of Trustees to diversify event venues to promote greater participation and reduce costs.  It would also stress the need to expeditiously resolve issues related to the Institute’s rent, debt, rental rates and maintenance costs.

By other terms, the Assembly would appeal to all governments, in particular those of developed countries, and private institutions to give their generous financial and other support.  It would also urge States that had interrupted their voluntary contributions to consider resuming them in view of the successful restructuring and revitalization of the Institute.  Further, the Assembly would encourage the Board of Trustees to resolve the critical financial situation of the Institute, particularly with a view to broadening its donor base and increasing the contributions to the General Fund.

Part III of the report (document A/59/490/Add.2) contains a draft resolution on the United Nations University, which was approved by the Committee without a vote on 14 December.  By that text, the Assembly would encourage that institution to continue its efforts to create a critical mass of viable research, as well as training centres and programmes around the world, focused on the needs and concerns of developing countries in particular.

Further by that draft, the Assembly would encourage the University to continue implementing the Secretary-General’s suggestions on innovative measures to improve interaction and communication between the University and other United Nations entities, and request the Secretary-General to encourage other United Nations bodies more fully to use the University to mobilize a worldwide network of applied policy researchers to assist the United Nations through research and capacity development in resolving pressing global problems.  It would also invite the international community to make voluntary contributions to the University, particularly to its Endowment Fund, to consolidate its distinctive identity.

Action on Second Committee Reports

AZANAW TADESSE ABREHA (Ethiopia), Rapporteur of the Second Committee, introduced the Committee’s reports.

The Assembly first took up the Committee’s report on humanitarian and disaster relief assistance of the United Nations, including special economic assistance: special economic assistance to individual countries or regions (document A/59/479), which contains six draft resolutions.

Acting without a vote, the Assembly adopted draft resolutions on assistance to Mozambique; humanitarian and special economic assistance to Serbia and Montenegro, as orally amended; international assistance for the economic rehabilitation of Angola; humanitarian assistance and rehabilitation for Ethiopia; assistance for humanitarian relief and the economic and social rehabilitation of Somalia; and assistance for the rehabilitation and reconstruction of Liberia.

The Assembly then took up the Committee’s report on information and Communication Technologies for Development (document A/59/480), containing a draft resolution and two draft decisions.

Again without a vote, it adopted a draft resolution on the World Summit on the Information Society, and draft decisions on a document relating to information and communication technologies for development, and a document relating to communication for development programmes in the United Nations.

Next, the Assembly turned to the Committee’s report on macroeconomic policy questions (document A/58/481, Adds.1-4), which contains four draft resolutions.

In a recorded vote of 166 in favour to 2 against (Palau, United States), and 6 abstentions (Australia, Canada, Israel, Japan, New Zealand, Republic of Korea), it adopted a draft resolution on international trade and development.  (See annex I.)

Acting without a vote, it then adopted draft resolutions on the international financial system and development; and an orally amended draft on the external debt crisis and development.

The Assembly then held a recorded vote on operative paragraph 12 of the draft on commodities.

In explanation of vote before the vote, the representative of Benin, speaking on behalf of the least developed countries (LDCs), said he was surprised and disappointed by one delegation’s request for a separate vote on paragraph 12 of the text.  Stressing that the language in question was reflective of the international community’s will and commitment following the 2001 Brussels World Conference on LDCs, he said it aimed to increase developing country access to markets, and aid them in overcoming trade barriers to commodities.  In no way could such measures be seen as a threat to other countries.

He said the text called for an international commitment in favour of the developing countries, and any request to vote on the draft undermined international will as well as developing country resolve to thwart dire conditions they faced.  He believed the separate vote that had been called was an error on the part of those requesting it, and asked the Assembly President to ask that the request be withdrawn.

Following a recorded vote on operative paragraph 12 of the commodities text of 170 in favour, to two against (Palau, United States), and two abstentions (Canada, Israel), the Assembly adopted the draft without a vote.

In explanation of vote after the vote, the representative of Canada said his delegation had abstained from voting on paragraph 12 of the text.  Canada had not explained its position during the Committee’s consideration of the matter, but now believed perhaps it should have, as several had expressed concern over Canada’s position after the vote.

He stressed that Canada’s market access initiative allowed duty and quota free access to commodities by LDCs, with certain exceptions.  It was important to note that the initiative was one of the most far-reaching of any such plan put in place by a developed country.  It had had a notable effect on trade with LDCs, and total imports from LDCs in 2003 had risen sharply over that of last year.

Also speaking after the vote, the representative of Turkey said her delegation had joined consensus on the draft, but disassociated itself from references to international instruments that it was not party to.  Its support for the draft did not represent a change in Turkey’s legal position regarding those instruments.

Next, the Assembly took up the Committee’s report on follow-up to and Implementation of the Outcome of the International Conference on Financing for Development, which contains a draft resolution on that topic.  Acting without a vote, it adopted the draft.

The Assembly then turned to the Committee’s report on sustainable development (document A/59/483, Adds.1-8), which contains 13 draft resolutions.

Acting without a vote, it adopted resolutions on the report of the Governing Council of the United Nations Environment Programme on its eighth special session, as orally amended; implementation of Agenda 21, the Programme for the Further Implementation of Agenda 21 and the outcomes of the World Summit on Sustainable Development; activities undertaken during the International Year of Freshwater, 2003, preparations for the International Decade for Action, “Water for Life”, 2005-2015, and further efforts to achieve the sustainable development of water resources, as orally amended; and further implementation of the Programme of Action for the Sustainable Development of Small Island Developing States.

Again without a vote, it adopted a draft resolution on promoting an integrated management approach to the Caribbean Sea area in the context of sustainable development, following a recorded vote of 167 in favour, to one against (United States), and one abstention (Japan), on preambular paragraph 14 of that text.  (See annex III.)

Without a vote, it then adopted a draft decision on accreditation of non-governmental organizations to the International Meeting in Mauritius.

Also without a vote, it adopted draft resolutions on the international strategy for disaster reduction; international cooperation to reduce the impact of the El Niño phenomenon; natural disasters and vulnerability, as orally amended; protection of the global climate for present and future generations of mankind; implementation of the United Nations Convention to Combat Desertification in Those Countries Experiencing Serious Drought and/or Desertification, Particularly in Africa; Convention on Biological Diversity; United Nations Decade of Education for Sustainable Development; and rendering assistance to the poor mountain countries to overcome obstacles in socio-economic and ecological areas.

The Committee then took up its report on implementation of the Outcome of the United Nations Conference on Human Settlements (Habitat II) and the Strengthening of the United Nations Human Settlements Programme (UN-HABITAT) (document A/59/484), which contains a draft resolution on that topic.

Without a vote, it adopted the draft.

Next, the Assembly took up the Committee’s report on globalization and interdependence (document A/59/485, Adds.1-5), which contains four draft resolutions and one draft decision.

Acting without a vote, it adopted draft resolutions on the role of the United Nations in promoting development in the context of globalization and interdependence; international migration and development; and preventing and combating corrupt practices and the transfer of assets of illicit origin and returning such assets to the countries of origin.

Again without a vote, it adopted a draft decision on a document relating to culture and development; and a draft resolution on integration of the economies in transition into the world economy.

The Assembly then turned to the Committee’s report on groups of Countries in special situations (document A/59/486, Adds.1-2), which contains two draft resolutions.

Acting without a vote, it adopted draft resolutions on the Third United Nations Conference on Least Developed Countries; and specific actions related to the particular needs and problems of landlocked developing countries:  outcome of the International Ministerial Conference of Landlocked and Transit Developing Countries and Donor Countries and International Financial and Development Institutions on Transit Transport Cooperation.

The representative of Chile, addressing to the draft on transit transport cooperation (contained in A/59/486/Add.2), drew the Assembly’s attention to the paragraph stating that his delegation had made a statement on the matter in the Committee, agreeing with consensus on the text.  The underlying premise of that statement also applied to the Assembly’s action today.

Next, the Assembly took up the Committee’s report on the eradication of poverty and other development issues (document A/59/487, Adds.1-3), which contains four draft resolutions.

Again without a vote, it adopted draft resolutions on the role of microcredit and microfinance in the eradication of poverty; implementation of the first United Nations Decade for the Eradication of Poverty (1997-2006), as orally amended; World Survey on the Role of Women in Development, and industrial development cooperation.

The Assembly then took up its report on operational activities for development (document A/59/488, Add.1), which contains a draft resolution and a draft decision.

Without a vote, it adopted the draft resolution on the triennial comprehensive policy review of operational activities for development of the United Nations system; and a draft decision on a document relating to activities of the United Nations Development Fund for Women (UNIFEM), as orally amended.

Next, the Assembly took up the Committee’s report on permanent sovereignty of the Palestinian People in the occupied Palestinian territory, including East Jerusalem, and of the Arab Population in the occupied Syrian Golan over their natural resources (document A/59/489).  In a recorded vote of 156 in favour, to five against (Israel, Marshall Islands, Federated States of Micronesia, Palau, the United States), with eleven abstentions, it adopted the draft.  (See annex IV.)

After the vote, the representative of Israel said his delegation was dismayed that extensive debate in the Committee had once again devolved into a forum for acrimony and accusation, with the presentation of a text that was one-sided, misleading and unproductive.  That had been especially disappointing this year, when there appeared to be a window of opportunity for real pursuit of peace in the region.

He stressed that such efforts could be ensured only through concerted action on the ground, not by acrimony in the Assembly.  The issue that had formed the basis of the text was only tenuously connected to the work of the Second Committee, and was an attempt to shift focus away from its priorities and the overall reform efforts of the Assembly.  The draft also added nothing to peace negotiations.  For those reasons Israel had voted against the text.

The Assembly then turned to the Committee’s report on training and research (document A/59/490, Adds.1-2), which contains two draft resolutions.

Again without a vote, it adopted draft resolutions on the United Nations Institute for Training and Research; and the United Nations University.

ANNEX I

Vote on Trade and Development

The draft resolution on international trade and development (document A/59/481/add.1) was adopted by a recorded vote of 166 in favour to 2 against, with 6 abstentions, as follows:

In favour:  Afghanistan, Albania, Algeria, Andorra, Angola, Antigua and Barbuda, Argentina, Armenia, Austria, Azerbaijan, Bahamas, Bahrain, Bangladesh, Barbados, Belarus, Belgium, Belize, Benin, Bolivia, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Botswana, Brazil, Brunei Darussalam, Bulgaria, Burkina Faso, Burundi, Cambodia, Cameroon, Central African Republic, Chile, China, Colombia, Comoros, Congo, Costa Rica, Côte d’Ivoire, Croatia, Cuba, Cyprus, Czech Republic, Democratic People’s Republic of Korea, Denmark, Djibouti, Dominica, Dominican Republic, Ecuador, Egypt, El Salvador, Eritrea, Estonia, Ethiopia, Federated States of Micronesia, Fiji, Finland, France, Gabon, Georgia, Germany, Ghana, Greece, Grenada, Guatemala, Guyana, Haiti, Hungary, Iceland, India, Indonesia, Iran, Iraq, Ireland, Italy, Jamaica, Jordan, Kazakhstan, Kenya, Kuwait, Lao People’s Democratic Republic, Latvia, Lebanon, Lesotho, Liberia, Libya, Liechtenstein, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Madagascar, Malaysia, Maldives, Mali, Malta, Marshall Islands, Mauritius, Mexico, Monaco, Mongolia, Morocco, Mozambique, Myanmar, Namibia, Nauru, Nepal, Netherlands, Nicaragua, Niger, Nigeria, Norway, Oman, Pakistan, Panama, Papua New Guinea, Paraguay, Peru, Philippines, Poland, Portugal, Qatar, Republic of Moldova, Romania, Russian Federation, Rwanda, Saint Kitts and Nevis, Saint Lucia, Saint Vincent and the Grenadines, Samoa, San Marino, Sao Tome and Principe, Saudi Arabia, Senegal, Serbia and Montenegro, Sierra Leone, Singapore, Slovakia, Slovenia, Solomon Islands, Somalia, South Africa, Spain, Sri Lanka, Sudan, Suriname, Sweden, Switzerland, Syria, Thailand, The former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia, Timor-Leste, Togo, Tonga, Trinidad and Tobago, Tunisia, Turkey, Turkmenistan, Tuvalu, Uganda, Ukraine, United Arab Emirates, United Kingdom, United Republic of Tanzania, Uruguay, Vanuatu, Venezuela, Viet Nam, Yemen, Zambia, Zimbabwe.

Against:  Palau, United States.

Abstain:  Australia, Canada, Israel, Japan, New Zealand, Republic of Korea.

Absent:  Bhutan, Cape Verde, Chad, Democratic Republic of the Congo, Equatorial Guinea, Gambia, Guinea, Guinea-Bissau, Honduras, Kiribati, Kyrgyzstan, Malawi, Mauritania, Seychelles, Swaziland, Tajikistan, Uzbekistan.

ANNEX II

Vote on Commodities

Operative paragraph 12, concerning access to markets by least developed countries of the draft resolution on commodities (document A/59/481/add.4) was retained by a recorded vote of 170 in favour to 2 against, with 2 abstentions, as follows:

In favour:  Afghanistan, Albania, Algeria, Andorra, Angola, Antigua and Barbuda, Argentina, Armenia, Australia, Austria, Azerbaijan, Bahamas, Bahrain, Bangladesh, Barbados, Belarus, Belgium, Belize, Benin, Bolivia, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Botswana, Brazil, Brunei Darussalam, Bulgaria, Burkina Faso, Burundi, Cambodia, Cameroon, Cape Verde, Central African Republic, Chile, China, Colombia, Comoros, Congo, Costa Rica, Côte d’Ivoire, Croatia, Cuba, Cyprus, Czech Republic, Democratic People’s Republic of Korea, Denmark, Djibouti, Dominica, Dominican Republic, Ecuador, Egypt, El Salvador, Eritrea, Estonia, Ethiopia, Federated States of Micronesia, Fiji, Finland, France, Georgia, Germany, Ghana, Greece, Grenada, Guatemala, Guyana, Haiti, Hungary, Iceland, India, Indonesia, Iran, Iraq, Ireland, Italy, Jamaica, Japan, Jordan, Kazakhstan, Kenya, Kuwait, Lao People’s Democratic Republic, Latvia, Lebanon, Lesotho, Liberia, Libya, Liechtenstein, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Madagascar, Malaysia, Maldives, Mali, Malta, Marshall Islands, Mauritius, Mexico, Monaco, Mongolia, Morocco, Mozambique, Myanmar, Namibia, Nauru, Nepal, Netherlands, New Zealand, Nicaragua, Niger, Nigeria, Norway, Oman, Pakistan, Panama, Papua New Guinea, Paraguay, Peru, Philippines, Poland, Portugal, Qatar, Republic of Korea, Republic of Moldova, Romania, Russian Federation, Rwanda, Saint Kitts and Nevis, Saint Lucia, Saint Vincent and the Grenadines, Samoa, San Marino, Sao Tome and Principe, Saudi Arabia, Senegal, Serbia and Montenegro, Sierra Leone, Singapore, Slovakia, Slovenia, Solomon Islands, Somalia, South Africa, Spain, Sri Lanka, Sudan, Suriname, Sweden, Switzerland, Syria, Thailand, The former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia, Timor-Leste, Togo, Tonga, Trinidad and Tobago, Tunisia, Turkey, Turkmenistan, Tuvalu, Uganda, Ukraine, United Arab Emirates, United Kingdom, United Republic of Tanzania, Uruguay, Vanuatu, Venezuela, Viet Nam, Yemen, Zambia, Zimbabwe.

Against:  Palau, United States.

Abstain:  Canada, Israel.

Absent:  Bhutan, Chad, Democratic Republic of the Congo, Equatorial Guinea, Gabon, Gambia, Guinea, Guinea-Bissau, Honduras, Kiribati, Kyrgyzstan, Malawi, Mauritania, Seychelles, Swaziland, Tajikistan, Uzbekistan.

ANNEX III

Vote on Integrated Management of Caribbean Area

Preambular paragraph 14 of the draft resolution on an integrated management approach to the Caribbean area (document A/59/483/add.2) was retained by a recorded vote of 167 in favour to 1 against, with 1 abstention, as follows:

In favour:  Afghanistan, Albania, Algeria, Andorra, Antigua and Barbuda, Argentina, Armenia, Australia, Austria, Azerbaijan, Bahamas, Bangladesh, Barbados, Belarus, Belgium, Belize, Benin, Bolivia, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Botswana, Brazil, Brunei Darussalam, Bulgaria, Burkina Faso, Burundi, Cambodia, Cameroon, Canada, Cape Verde, Central African Republic, Chile, China, Colombia, Comoros, Congo, Costa Rica, Côte d’Ivoire, Croatia, Cuba, Cyprus, Czech Republic, Democratic People’s Republic of Korea, Denmark, Djibouti, Dominica, Dominican Republic, Ecuador, Egypt, El Salvador, Eritrea, Estonia, Ethiopia, Federated States of Micronesia, Fiji, Finland, France, Georgia, Germany, Ghana, Greece, Grenada, Guatemala, Guyana, Haiti, Hungary, Iceland, India, Indonesia, Iran, Iraq, Ireland, Italy, Jamaica, Jordan, Kazakhstan, Kenya, Lao People’s Democratic Republic, Latvia, Lebanon, Lesotho, Liberia, Libya, Liechtenstein, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Madagascar, Malaysia, Maldives, Mali, Malta, Marshall Islands, Mauritius, Mexico, Monaco, Mongolia, Morocco, Mozambique, Myanmar, Namibia, Nauru, Nepal, Netherlands, New Zealand, Nicaragua, Niger, Nigeria, Norway, Oman, Pakistan, Palau, Panama, Papua New Guinea, Paraguay, Peru, Philippines, Poland, Portugal, Qatar, Republic of Korea, Republic of Moldova, Romania, Russian Federation, Rwanda, Saint Kitts and Nevis, Saint Lucia, Saint Vincent and the Grenadines, Samoa, San Marino, Sao Tome and Principe, Saudi Arabia, Senegal, Serbia and Montenegro, Seychelles, Sierra Leone, Singapore, Slovakia, Slovenia, Solomon Islands, Somalia, South Africa, Spain, Sri Lanka, Sudan, Suriname, Sweden, Switzerland, Syria, Thailand, The former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia, Timor-Leste, Togo, Tonga, Trinidad and Tobago, Tunisia, Turkey, Tuvalu, Uganda, Ukraine, United Kingdom, United Republic of Tanzania, Uruguay, Vanuatu, Venezuela, Viet Nam, Yemen, Zambia, Zimbabwe.

Against:  United States.

Abstain:  Japan.

Absent:  Angola, Bahrain, Bhutan, Chad, Democratic Republic of the Congo, Equatorial Guinea, Gabon, Gambia, Guinea, Guinea-Bissau, Honduras, Israel, Kiribati, Kuwait, Kyrgyzstan, Malawi, Mauritania, Swaziland, Tajikistan, Turkmenistan, United Arab Emirates, Uzbekistan.

ANNEX IV

Vote on Palestinian Sovereignty

The draft resolution on permanent sovereignty of the Palestinian people over their natural resources (document A/59/489) was adopted by a recorded vote of 156 in favour to 5 against, with 11 abstentions, as follows:

In favour:  Afghanistan, Algeria, Andorra, Angola, Antigua and Barbuda, Argentina, Armenia, Austria, Azerbaijan, Bahamas, Bahrain, Bangladesh, Barbados, Belarus, Belgium, Belize, Benin, Bolivia, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Botswana, Brazil, Brunei Darussalam, Bulgaria, Burkina Faso, Burundi, Cambodia, Canada, Cape Verde, Chile, China, Colombia, Comoros, Congo, Costa Rica, Croatia, Cuba, Cyprus, Czech Republic, Democratic People’s Republic of Korea, Denmark, Djibouti, Dominica, Ecuador, Egypt, El Salvador, Eritrea, Estonia, Ethiopia, Fiji, Finland, France, Gabon, Georgia, Germany, Ghana, Greece, Grenada, Guatemala, Guyana, Hungary, Iceland, India, Indonesia, Iran, Iraq, Ireland, Italy, Jamaica, Japan, Jordan, Kazakhstan, Kenya, Kuwait, Lao People’s Democratic Republic, Latvia, Lebanon, Lesotho, Liberia, Libya, Liechtenstein, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Madagascar, Malaysia, Maldives, Mali, Malta, Mauritius, Mexico, Monaco, Mongolia, Morocco, Mozambique, Myanmar, Namibia, Nepal, Netherlands, New Zealand, Nicaragua, Niger, Nigeria, Norway, Oman, Pakistan, Panama, Paraguay, Peru, Philippines, Poland, Portugal, Qatar, Republic of Korea, Republic of Moldova, Romania, Russian Federation, Saint Lucia, Saint Vincent and the Grenadines, San Marino, Sao Tome and Principe, Saudi Arabia, Senegal, Serbia and Montenegro, Seychelles, Sierra Leone, Singapore, Slovakia, Slovenia, Somalia, South Africa, Spain, Sri Lanka, Sudan, Suriname, Sweden, Switzerland, Syria, Thailand, The former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia, Timor-Leste, Togo, Trinidad and Tobago, Tunisia, Turkey, Turkmenistan, Uganda, Ukraine, United Arab Emirates, United Kingdom, United Republic of Tanzania, Uruguay, Uzbekistan, Venezuela, Viet Nam, Yemen, Zambia, Zimbabwe.

Against:  Federated States of Micronesia, Israel, Marshall Islands, Palau, United States.

Abstain:  Albania, Australia, Cameroon, Central African Republic, Côte d’Ivoire, Dominican Republic, Haiti, Nauru, Tonga, Tuvalu, Vanuatu.

Absent:  Bhutan, Chad, Democratic Republic of the Congo, Equatorial Guinea, Gambia, Guinea, Guinea-Bissau, Honduras, Kiribati, Kyrgyzstan, Malawi, Mauritania, Papua New Guinea, Rwanda, Saint Kitts and Nevis, Samoa, Solomon Islands, Swaziland, Tajikistan.

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For information media. Not an official record.