New York

26 December 2017

Note to Correspondents: on the approved United Nations regular budget for 2018-2019

On Sunday morning, 24 December, the General Assembly approved the Regular Budget for 2018-2019 at an amount of $5.397 billion. This amount sets the budget level around $286M (or 5%) below the final approved level for 2016-2017, and $193M below the initially proposed budget level for 2018-2019, including all “add-on’s”.
The additional reductions come mainly from across-the-board cuts in non-post resources for most Departments and Offices, including the Special Political Missions.
A total of 9,959 posts have been approved for 2018-2019; 131 below the total number of posts approved for 2016-2017.  
The General Assembly approved resources in the amount of $88M for the establishment and maintenance of the United Nations Mission for Justice Support in Haiti (MINUJUSTH) for the period from 16 October 2017 to 30 June 2018; and approved resources in the amount of $911M for the maintenance of the United Nations-African Union Mission in Darfur (UNAMID) for the period from 1 July 2017 to 30 June 2018.  This brings the total overall approved resources for peacekeeping operations for the 2017/18 period to $7.316 billion, which compares to approved resources for the 2016/17 period of $7.909 billion, a reduction of $593M or 7.5 per cent.
The General Assembly granted a one year commitment authority for the International Residual Mechanism for Criminal Tribunals.
The Secretary-General welcomes the General Assembly’s support to his management reform proposal aimed at enhancing delivery of all mandates and the performance of the Secretariat.
The General Assembly also provided guidance on the comprehensive proposals, including on the restructuring of the Departments of Field Support and of Management to be submitted by mid-2018.
In particular, the General Assembly endorsed the proposal to move from a biennial planning and budgeting period to annual programme budget on a trial basis, as of 2020. This signals one of the most significant shifts in the programme planning and budgeting process of the Organization since the 1970s. The General Assembly also requested the Secretary-General to undertake an assessment of the mechanisms and levels of discretionary managerial authorities that may be required in order to address unanticipated programmatic needs and to report in the 73rd Session.
Stéphane Dujarric, Spokesman for the Secretary-General
New York, 26 December 2017