15 November 2017
Preparations Begin for ECOSOC Review Negotiations
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UNGA President Miroslav Lajčák will appoint co-facilitators for the process related to the review of UNGA resolution A/RES/68/1 on the strengthening of ECOSOC.

ECOSOC President Marie Chatardová is organizing a series of informal meetings with Member States as well as subsidiary bodies of the Council to discuss the process.

DESA is developing an informal paper and holding discussions with stakeholders.

9 November 2017: The UN is taking steps to prepare for the upcoming discussions on the reform of the UN Economic and Social Council (ECOSOC). Following the adoption of a UN General Assembly (UNGA) resolution in 2013, ECOSOC underwent a series of reforms to strengthen the Council. By that resolution, UN Member States must review the arrangements during the 72nd UNGA session.

UNGA President Miroslav Lajčák said, on 9 November, that he intends to appoint co-facilitators for the review process, and is still considering options. ECOSOC President Marie Chatardová said she is organizing a series of informal meetings with Member States as well as subsidiary bodies of the Council to discuss the process. In an earlier meeting, on 2 October 2017, both Presidents agreed on the need to ensure an inclusive, transparent and UN Member State-driven process. Also as part of preparations for the review, the UN Department of Economic and Social Affairs (DESA) is developing an informal paper, and scheduling informal discussions with stakeholders.

Resolution 68/1 titled, ‘Review of the implementation of General Assembly resolution 61/16 on the strengthening of the Economic and Social Council,’ was adopted by the UNGA on 20 September 2013, after nine months of consultations. The resolution outlines arrangements on ECOSOC’s functions and architecture. Among other provisions, it calls on the Council to: adopt a July-to-July cycle for its programme of work; have a strengthened issues-based approach to enhance its lead role in achieving a balanced integration of the three dimensions of sustainable development; and base its annual programme of work on a main theme that takes into account the role of the Council in promoting sustainable development and enables the Council to promote UN system-wide coherence and coordination. The resolution also outlines arrangements for ECOSOC segments and meetings, including for its operational activities for development segment, its humanitarian affairs segment, its high-level segment, its integration segment, and its coordination and management meetings.

The resolution also calls on ECOSOC to: continue to strengthen and further promote implementation of the financing for development (FfD) agenda; promote the active participation of Major Groups, NGOs, other relevant stakeholders and regional organizations in the activities of the Council; further promote the integration of youth into its deliberations; and devote time to the specific needs of countries in special situations.

After the Assembly’s review of Resolution 68/1, it will review the functions and architecture of the HLPF, as mandated in Resolution 67/290, beginning in 2018-2019. [Memo from Meeting of UNGA and ECOSOC Presidents, November 2017] [Memo from Meeting of UNGA and ECOSOC Presidents, October 2017] [UNGA Resolution A/RES/68/1] [About Resolution 68/1]

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