Between the 7th and 11th of December, the first session of the Group of Governmental Experts on the UN Report on Military Expenditures took place in Geneva.. The Group seeks to evaluate and report the use of military expenditures by the UN Member States. The meetings were attended by experts coming from 12 UN Member States: Angola, Argentina, China, El Salvador, France, Iran, Japan, Lithuania, Pakistan, Romania, Spain and the United States of America.
During the first day of the session, the Permanent Representative of Romania to the UN, Ambassador Ion Jinga, was elected President of the Group of Experts (GGE). The items on the GGE’s agenda covered: the analysis of the participation of Member States to MILEX’s process, trends regarding the military expenditures between 2011 and 2016, identification of causes which lead to regional gaps, reviewing the patterns of reporting and analyzing their efficiency, the strategic role of UNODA for the efficient functioning of MILEX. Moreover, the participants debated the level of implementation of the previous GGE recommendations, dating from 2011.
The participation of Romania as a member of the Group of Governmental Experts on the UN Report on Military Expenditures and the election of the Permanent Representative of Romania as President of the Group represent a recognition of our country’s permanent contribution to the promotion of international peace and security and towards confidence-building between member states, through the promotion of transparency of the military expenditures.
The question of transparency of military expenditures came on the UN agenda in 1980 when the General Assembly adopted the resolution A/35/685 “Decreasing the military expenditures” which implemented MILEX and Romania was among the co-sponsors.
Because of the failure of the negotiations regarding the freezing and the reduction of military expenditures, during the period of 1981-1989, starting with 1990 MILEX has been more focused on developing instruments and making recommendations towards the transparency of military expenditures.
In 1994, Romania co-authored, along with Austria, Germany, United Kingdom, Sweden and Hungary the General’s Assembly resolution “Objective information on military matters, including transparency of military expenditures”. This biennial resolution represents the basis for report of Member States regarding their military expenditures.
In 2010, 30 years after the creation of MILEX, UN Secretary General decided on the creation of a Group of Governmental Experts, tasked with evaluating the MILEX process and offering new ways to improve it. Therefore, GGE met three times during the period of November 2010 to June 2011, and its report was approved by the General Assembly through a resolution which proposed a new GGE five years later, in 2016.
The first session of this GGE in place was held in Geneva, between the 7th and 11th November and the next two sessions will take place in New York in March 2017 and in Geneva in June 2017.
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