Statement on the 2023 Unified Budget Proposal

As delivered by Minister Counsellor Henrik Malvik at the Permanent Council, Vienna, 20 October 2022

Thank you, Mr. Chair, and thank you Madame Secretary General for your presentation of the OSCE’s 2023 Unified Budget Proposal. Let me also thank the Secretariat, the fund managers, and their staff for the tremendous effort involved in coordinating the proposal.

Dear Colleagues,

There is a reason why we are here, meeting every week, making decisions, and providing guidance to the Organization. Namely, because the OSCE has repeatedly proven its value during the last almost 50 years and because the OSCE is unique in its expertise, experience, and services. Daily, and as we speak, the Secretariat, Field Missions, and Institutions deliver on their mandated objective of increasing security across our region and across all three dimensions.

This organisation should continue to serve our common interests, deliver on its mandate, and maintain its credibility in the eyes of partners and donors. If we are serious about the OSCE and value its contributions, the Unified Budget cannot be used as a bargaining tool to pursue narrowly defined national interests.

Those participating States that are holding this organization hostage and forcing the OSCE to limp along on zero nominal growth and monthly allotments undermine the organization’s overall credibility and ability to fulfil its mandate. And, as the distinguished US ambassador correctly pointed out, it weakens the organization from which we all benefit.

Dear Colleagues,

Norway continues to support a stable and reliable budget for the OSCE, a budget that is approved on time, and that allow for proper planning and the fulfilment of the organization’s mandate.

We therefore express our full support to the UB23 proposal put forward by the Secretary General. We acknowledge the considerations and rationale that lie behind the proposed increases. There is no need to go into detail. The proposal and the Secretary General’s presentation speaks for itself.

We call on all other participating States to listen to the advice of the Secretary General, fund managers and staff and agree on a timely, professional budget for 2023.

Then we can continue upholding the principles and commitments we have all agreed to.

Then the OSCE can meet the increasing security challenges across our region, which call for an even stronger OSCE.

Before I conclude, I want to thank you Madame Secretary General for the full commitment you show as head of the OSCE. And like you, I want to pay tribute to the secretariat, the mission and institution members, and all the staff that have managed to carry on with their tasks this year despite the lack of an agreed budget. You are the heart and soul of this organization, and your tireless efforts are priceless.

I thank you.