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Panel Discussions

The 2007 Operational Activities Segment took place on 10 - 13 July 2007 at the United Nations Palais des Nations in Geneva. The present Segment had as its main theme the Triennial Comprehensive Policy Review (TCPR) of operational activities for development of the United Nations system, which the General Assembly will conduct at its 62nd session. The TCPR is based on an overall assessment of the effectiveness of the UN development cooperation at country-level. As part of this process, ECOSOC assessed to what extent and in what ways the UN system provides efficient and effective support to developing countries to realize their national development priorities and achieve the internationally agreed development goals, including the MDGs.

The Council commenced its deliberations in the afternoon of 10 July 2007 with an opening statement by the Chairman of the Segment / Vice-President of ECOSOC, the Permanent Representative of Algeria to the United Nations. This was followed by the introduction of the reports of the Secretary-General on the TCPR and on Funding of operational activities for development by Mr. Sha Zukang, Under-Secretary-General for Economic and Social Affairs.

The remainder of the afternoon and the following day (11 July 2007) was devoted to panels and interactive discussions. These events introduced the debate on the 2007 TCPR of operational activities for development of the United Nations system which was held on 12 - 13 July 2007. One of guiding ideas in organizing the panels was to show the variety of the UN contributions to development cooperation.

Panel 1: High-level interactive panel discussion on the “Contribution and effectiveness of the UN development system”, 10 July (3:15 to 6 pm) (Summary)

The objective of this panel was to stimulate a reflection on the performance of the UN development system and its future role. Panelists included Ministers (from developing and developed countries), high-level representatives involved in development cooperation as well as senior officials of UN system agencies. The panelists shared their views on such issues as country ownership, impact and improved functioning of the UN system at country level, and resources.

Panel 2: Dialogue with the Executive Heads of the United Nations Funds and Programmes (UNDP, UNFPA, UNICEF and WFP), July 11 (10:00 a.m. – 1:00 p.m.) (Summary)

This dialogue provided an opportunity to address the following issues linked to UN work at country level: (a) increased national ownership and alignment as reflected in the new CCA and UNDAF guidelines and in the agencies' strategic plans and as confirmed by the recent OECD/DAC survey; (b) regionalization; (c) system-wide support to national capacity development efforts; (d) partnerships and alliances for accelerated progress towards the MDGs - a positive sense of urgency.

Panel 3:  Panel on “Coherence and effectiveness of the UN development system at the regional level”, July 11 2007 (3:00 p.m. – 6:00 p.m.) (Summary)

The purpose of this panel was for the UN Regional Directors' Team in Latin America and the Caribbean and their national counterparts in government to share with the Council their experience on how regionalization contributes to a more effective and integrated interagency work at regional and country levels. It offered an opportunity to discuss the role of regional structures as an important bridge between headquarters and country offices, and their impact in terms of improving the support provided by the UN system to Governments.

The session on 12 July 2007: (10:00 a.m. – 1:00 p.m. and 3:00 p.m. – 6:00 p.m.) (Summary)  provided the opportunity for delegations to engage in a general discussion on the TCPR and to evaluate the full implementation of the Assembly resolution (59/250) based on the report of the Secretary-General reviewing the implementation of resolution 59/250 (A/62/73-E/2007/52).

On 13 July 2007 (10:00 a.m.–12:45 p.m.), the Council continued with the formal debate on the full implementation of the General Assembly resolution 59/250 of 2004, and concluded the Operational Activities Segment.