Statement by Ambassador Joseph M. Torsella, U.S. Representative to the United Nations for UN Management and Reform, on the Approval by the UN's Fifth Committee of the 2012/2013 Peacekeeping Budget, June 14, 2012

Ambassador Joseph M Torsella
U.S. Representative for UN Management and Reform 
New York, NY
June 15, 2012

The United States welcomes the Fifth Committee’s approval of the UN peacekeeping budgets that provide significant savings to American taxpayers while supporting and strengthening crucial UN peacekeeping operations around the world.

Through management innovations, thoughtful downsizing where missions have changed, and shifting resources from overhead to operations, this budget lowers the price tag for UN peacekeeping by $517 million from last year’s level, and provides a one-time adjustment that will reduce member state assessments by an additional $50 million. This represents a reduction for the US taxpayers of more than $150 million compared to last year’s approved budget.

We also applaud the important reforms adopted during the session, including continued system-wide management efficiencies and performance improvements, strong support for a “zero tolerance” policy for sexual exploitation and abuse in peacekeeping, and the first-ever comprehensive review of civilian staffing to ensure that staffing levels better align with changing requirements as missions evolve.

UN peacekeeping is burden-sharing at its best and, when done right, a good deal for American taxpayers. The United States and our partners have consistently called for providing UN peacekeeping with the resources necessary to do the job, while also stewarding taxpayer resources more responsibly. While final peacekeeping costs will reflect how well the UN manages its budget in the months ahead – and may be updated to reflect new or unforeseen developments – we will continue to be vigilant to ensure that these gains are realized.


PRN: 2012/144