Thank you, Mr. Chairman.
I would first like to take the opportunity to thank Martin Zvachula of the Mission of the Federated States of Micronesia, for the productive process of negotiations he led on this resolution. His proactive and even-handed engagement helped all parties reach consensus.
The U.S. was pleased to join consensus on this resolution. It is a tangible sign of the importance that we all attach to the development of Small Island Developing States. We look forward to preparations this spring in New York and to a successful Third International Conference on Small Island Developing States in Samoa in next September.
With regard to budgetary aspects, the U.S. was surprised and disappointed to learn that appropriate funding for the conference and preparatory process had not been set aside once the dates were known. It was our expectation that all relevant entities with responsibilities related to the conference and preparatory process would have included funds related to the conference as part of their initial overall request for the 2014-2015 biennium.
However, it is our clear understanding that the necessary funds will be found within the 2014-2015 biennium budget to allow the Conference to proceed as scheduled. We will work closely with our partners in the Fifth Committee to ensure that the required funding is secured. It is our firm expectation that the Secretariat will make all necessary efforts to eliminate the need for any increases to the UN regular budget associated with preparations for this meeting.
We remain deeply committed to working constructively with our partners in Samoa and beyond in order to address together the unique challenges and needs of Small Island Developing States. Thank you.
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