1. About Finance and Budget
The Charter of the United Nations is the treaty that established the United Nations, and includes the purposes and principles, membership, and organs of the United Nations, among other things. The Charter has 19 chapters and 111 articles in which Articles 17 and 19 relate to finance and budget:
- The General Assembly shall consider and approve the budget of the Organization.
- The expenses of the Organization shall be borne by the Members as apportioned by the General Assembly.
- The General Assembly shall consider and approve any financial and budgetary arrangements with specialized agencies referred to in Article 57 and shall examine the administrative budgets of such specialized agencies with a view to making recommendations to the agencies concerned.
A Member of the United Nations which is in arrears in the payment of its financial contributions to the Organization shall have no vote in the General Assembly if the amount of its arrears equals or exceeds the amount of the contributions due from it for the preceding two full years. The General Assembly may, nevertheless, permit such a Member to vote if it is satisfied that the failure to pay is due to conditions beyond the control of the Member.
The Fifth Committee is the Committee of the General Assembly with responsibilities for administrative and budgetary matters. Based on the reports of the Fifth Committee, the General Assembly considers and approves the budget of the Organization in accordance with Article 17 of the Charter. Resolutions and decisions of the General Assembly are available on the Fifth Committee website, along with the Committee’s membership, programme of work and documentation.
The Committee for Programme and Coordination (CPC) is the main subsidiary organ of the Economic and Social Council and the General Assembly for planning, programming and coordination. Its mandate, membership, programme of work and documentation are available on the CPC website.
The Financial Regulations and Rules of the United Nations and the Regulations and Rules Governing Programme Planning, the Programme Aspects of the Budget, the Monitoring of Implementation and the Methods of Evaluation (PPBME) constitute the backbone of the Organization’s financial governance:
- Through its Financial Regulations, the General Assembly issues the broad legislative directives governing the financial management of the United Nations. Within that framework, the Secretary-General formulates and promulgates the Rules, which not only provide details to further define the parameters within which staff and the Administration must exercise their responsibilities, but also constitute a statement as to the manner in which the Financial Regulations are to be implemented.
- The PPBME legislates planning and budgeting in the Organization. The Regulations provide the legislative directives established by the Assembly governing the planning, programming, monitoring and evaluation of all activities undertaken by the United Nations, irrespective of their source of financing. The Rules govern the planning, programming, monitoring and evaluation of United Nations activities, except as may otherwise be provided by the Assembly or specifically exempted by the Secretary-General.