31 May 2000

Industrial Development Board, 22nd session

Daily Highlights: Vienna, 31 May 2000

The plenary meeting of the second day of the Industrial Development Board, 22nd session, continued the debate on the implementation and financing of the integrated technical cooperation programmes in developing countries. Member States gave constructive remarks in line with the request of Director-General Carlos Magariños, who said, in his opening statement, that "your participation in the discussion on this topic will be particularly welcome. We need your guidance in deciding what should the size and characteristics of UNIDO's technical cooperation."

During the session, the Government of Austria announced that for 2000 Austria would contribute Euro 1 million to the Industrial Development Fund (IDF) programmable by UNIDO for the integrated programmes as well as approximately Euro 2 million special purpose contributions for specific components of integrated programmes. The Government of Ireland announced a programmable contribution of 100,000 Irish pounds (Euro 127.000 ), which should be used for an integrated programme in one of the six Irish priority countries in Africa. The Governments of Denmark and India informed the IDB that their annual contribution to the IDF (DKr 15 million, approx US.2 million, and US.2 million would also be made in 2000. (Picture: The Board went on to adopt eight decisions related to the agenda items)

Noting with concern the insufficiency of resources from voluntary contributions, the Board requested Member States to contribute to or to increase their voluntary contributions to UNIDO and work more closely with the Organization in mobilizing funds and financing the integrated programmes from bilateral and multilateral funds.

In addition to the integrated programmes and future regional programmes, speakers touched upon so-called "stand-alone projects", which draw mainly from one service module and are designed for countries where no integrated programme has been developed.

Further, Member States' statements focused on the implementation of the resolution on sustainable industrial development, which was adopted by the eighth session of the UNIDO General Conference last December. They requested the Director-General to enhance cooperation between UNIDO and multilateral financing institutions, such as the Montreal Protocol, the Kyoto Protocol and the Global Environment Facility (GEF).

With regard to the financial situation of UNIDO, Member States urged the countries to pay their assessed contributions, including advances to the Working Capital Fund and prior years' arrears, without delay.

The Board took note of the initiative of the Government of Slovenia to host an International Centre for Sustainable Industrial Development and the reports of the Director-General on the matter. (Picture: The Board requests Member States to contribute to or to increase their voluntary contributions to UNIDO)

The Board went on to adopt eight decisions related to the above agenda items. These also included the date of the Programme and Budget Committee to be held from 4 to 5 September 2000 and the date and the provisional agenda of the Industrial Development Board to be held from 14 to 16 November 2000.

Concluding the session, Mr. Magariños thanked IDB President Ambassador Ortiz from Spain for his excellent guidance in monitoring the debate and expressed his gratitude to all delegations for their constructive and honest statements. "Your comments will allow us to better focus our efforts in the formulation and implementation of our technical cooperation activities to the satisfaction of recipient countries," he said. (Picture: Mr. Magariños thanks IDB President Ambassador Ortiz from Spain for his excellent guidance in monitoring the debate)