UN regular budget cash deficit reaches 386 million USD: official

0 Comment(s)Print E-mail Xinhua, October 12, 2019
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UN Under-Secretary-General for Management Strategy, Policy and Compliance Catherine Pollard (C) and Chandramouli Ramanathan (R), Controller, Assistant Secretary-General for Program Planning, Finance and Budget in the Department of Management Strategy, Policy and Compliance, attend a press briefing at the UN headquarters in New York, on Oct. 11, 2019. [Photo/Xinhua]

The United Nations' regular budget cash deficit has reached its deepest in the year at 386 million U.S. dollars, a UN official said Friday.

"As of Oct. 9, 2019, the regular budget cash deficit reached its deepest in the year at 386 million U.S. dollars, thereby exhausting the 150 million dollars from the Working Capital Fund as well as the 203 million dollars from the Special Account, and borrowing 33 million dollars from the closed peacekeeping missions," Catherine Pollard, UN undersecretary-general for management strategy, policy and compliance, told the Fifth Committee of the UN General Assembly.

"We had started borrowing from the Working Capital Fund in July, and we had to borrow from the Special Account as well in August. By late September, we had to borrow from closed peacekeeping missions, as regular budget cash reserves were so severely depleted that we risked problems with payroll payments or defaults in vendor payments," she said.

"By the end of October, we are poised to surpass last year's record cash deficit of 488 million (dollars), and risk exhausting the closed peacekeeping cash reserves also," she warned.

The regular budget has been facing "severe liquidity issues" in recent years, with a growing downward trend whereby, each year, the situation becomes more dire than the year before, said Pollard.

"For the second successive year, we have exhausted all regular budget liquidity reserves, despite several measures we had taken to reduce expenditures to align them with available liquidity," she added.

The Fifth Committee is the committee of the UN General Assembly with responsibilities for administrative and budgetary matters. The Assembly also considers and approves financial and budgetary arrangements with specialized agencies and makes recommendations to the agencies concerned.

Speaking to reporters after the meeting, Pollard said that the United Nations is taking various measures to cut expenditures even including reducing heating and heating services starting Monday.

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