Statement by the Permanent Representative, H.E. Mr. Margus Kolga, at the UN-Women Executive Board Annual Session 2012
Thank you Mr. President, Ms. Bachelet, distinguished colleagues,
I am glad to recognize that UN-Women has became functional organization with its own budget, Financial Regulations and Rules, the Strategic Plan and the Strategic Framework and staff in such a short time period and we fully support the efforts targeted for the strengthening the institution, which in turn helps to realize UN Delivering as One.
When we talk about strengthening, then funding is one of the core elements. Through adequate funding it is possible to enhance the credibility and capability and we regret that this important organization remains still underfunded. But it is noteworthy that with these limited funds UN-Women puts so much emphasis achieving the results. Estonia has contributed annually core funding to UN-Women since its establishment, and will continue to support its activities by voluntary contributions also in the future.
We agree with the assessment that main challenges are improving the effectiveness, transparency, accountability and value for money for stakeholders and strengthening the capacity of Field Offices. Partnership with business community, non-governmental organizations and academia is very important in order for UN-Women to fulfill its goals. One of the collaboration examples which we would like to highlight, and welcome very much, is UN-Women partnership with Microsoft to utilize ICT for economic and political empowerment programs for women.
UN-Women, in its work, has paid a lot of attention to the security and development related aspects which are very much related and one cannot exclude the other. Involvement of women in conflict settlement, arbitration and peacebuilding is essential and sometimes the only way to reach the whole population. The leadership of Ms. Bachelet in this role is of crucial importance to the implementation of resolution UN Security Council resolution 1325. Estonia has adopted its National Action Plan in 2010 and we have introduced its process of preparing the National Action Plan to countries that are still at an early stage of preparing their own national action plans.
We very highly appreciate the work done by the UN-Women in striving towards ending violence against women and girls with different initiatives and projects in so many countries all around the world. We also welcome the development of a system-wide action plan (SWAP) that provides an accountability framework to accelerate gender mainstreaming and continued work on gender marker to have a better overview how gender dimension is being taken into account in UN activities and resource assignment. We also strongly support activities which aim to improve women’s access to justice.
These are just few examples of the achievements of UN-Women which we consider very positive. Gender equality continues to be one of the priorities of Estonia’s development and human rights related activities and we will continue to work to ensure that UN-Women would be able to fulfill its potential. In this regard we also commend the UN-Women’s cooperation with other UN Funds and Programmes.