Address by H.E. Mr. Shigeki Sumi
Ambassador of Japan
On Agenda item 110: Revitalization of the work of the General Assembly
At the 63rd Session of the General Assembly of the United Nations
20 November 2008
I would like to express my sincere gratitude to the President for convening today's meeting to discuss one of the most important agendas conducted by the General Assembly, Revitalization of its work. As the General Assembly is represented by all the Member States of the United Nations and mandated to elaborate any questions or matters within the scope of the United Nations Charter, revitalizing its work is the core for reform of the United Nations.
We are in the middle of the useful major thematic debates and panel discussions and Japan appreciates the initiative. I am convinced that the outcome of the High-level Event on the Millennium Development Goals held on the 25th of September would not have been so successful without the substantive contribution made by the General Assembly's thematic debate on "Recognizing the achievements, addressing the challenges and getting back on track to achieve the Millennium Development Goals by 2015" held last April. I also believe that the thematic debate on Human Security held in May was extremely fruitful, since it could promote the understanding of the United Nations' Member States on this very important concept relating to all the major activities conducted by the Organization, such as development, international peace and security, and human rights. I strongly expect the thematic debate of that occasion will enable the concept of Human Security to be incorporated further in the Organization's works.
On the other hand, regarding the thematic debate held in April entitled "Toward a common understanding on management reform", although it contributed to the recognition of the current agenda by the Members, certain discussions were duplicated with those already made in the Fifth Committee. In this regard, I would like to point out that considering the limited resources of the United Nations, holding thematic debates requires the careful selection of themes and content on a case-by-case basis.
Secondly, the General Assembly must continue to deploy its utmost effort to improve its works, discussions, and decisions in order to make them more efficient. It is more important than ever to further focus the work of General Assembly on priority issues, to relay action-oriented messages by streamlining its agenda, reducing the volume of submitted documents, and to continue comprehensively to tackle its activities with improved effectiveness. In this context, I particularly would like to request the Secretariat to broadly share, in advance and with transparency, information regarding the agenda directly covered by the Plenary of the General Assembly, such as the schedule of discussions or actions on resolutions, with all the Member States through, for example, the Journal.
Japan also commends the regular meetings between the President of the Security Council and the President of the General Assembly, as well as the practice whereby the Secretary-General provides the General Assembly with timely briefings and reports in various fields. We expect cooperation and coordination among the principal organs of the United Nations to be strengthened, improved and encouraged as the revitalization process continues. Furthermore, Japan welcomes the close relationship between the General Assembly (GA) and the Peace-building Commission (PBC) as the General Assembly is the organ which provides overall guidance to the PBC, and we appreciate the active discussions made regarding the PBC's annual report to the GA.
Finally, my delegation would like to stress the importance of the implementation of what has already been agreed upon. Meaningful revitalization of the GA is possible through timely and fair implementation of the decisions and measures adopted. In this regard, I appreciate every effort made by the Ad-Hoc Working Group and the Secretariat. However, those efforts must be continued, and I believe that the Working Group to be established at the 63rd General Assembly by Resolution 63/276 should again focus on reviewing and monitoring the status of implementation of relevant resolutions.
Expecting forthcoming constructive discussion in regards to this agenda, my delegation reiterates its commitment to contribute to revitalizing the work of the General Assembly.
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