UN takes strict measures to cut costs to cope with financial crisis

GP: World Leaders Address United Nations General Assembly 191009 EU

UN Secretary General Antonio Guterres

UNITED NATIONS, Oct 12 (NNN-Xinhua) — The United Nations is taking strict and concrete measures to cut costs, hoping to tide over the worst financial crisis facing the organization in a decade, said UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres.

“Effective immediately, official travel will be limited to the most essential activities,” Guterres said in a letter dated Oct 10, which was addressed to all heads of UN departments, offices and regional commissions.

“In addition, it will be necessary to reduce all other non-post expenses to the extent possible,” he said.

The UN chief also ordered to postpone purchases of goods and services, implement energy-saving and other measures to reduce utility bills and temporarily curtail expenses on managing facilities.

“Events occurring before or after official meeting hours and during weekends will no longer be booked at all headquarters duty stations, effective Oct. 14,” said the secretary-general.

“Agreements for events that have already been booked will be reviewed to determine whether such events can be held,” said the UN chief.

“Managers are directed to explore avenues to further limit expenses during the last quarter of 2019 and to curtail expenditures to the extent possible in their areas of work,” he added.

The UN chief stressed that existing measures already in place, such as limits to hiring against vacant regular budget funded positions during the last quarter, remain in place. — NNN-XINHUA