Meeting for Resident Coordinators

Statement by President of ECOSOC Ambassador Mona Juul at the Second Annual Global Meeting for Resident Coordinators, 20 November 2019.

| ECOSOC President

Deputy-Secretary-General, Under-Secretary-General Liu, Assistant-Secretary-General Piper, Resident Coordinators, Colleagues,

It is my distinct pleasure to welcome you all to this afternoon’s session of dialogue between Resident Coordinators and Member States.

It is such a fantastic, and rare, opportunity to have so many RCs from all corners of the globe here, and ready to engage with us on their important work.

All of us gathered here- RCs and Member States- have something in common, we are all very fortunate. This is because:

  • we have the opportunity to show multilateralism working at its best, 
  • because we can influence how the global community, governments, and every single one of us, implements Agenda 2030,
  • because we can learn from each other, what works and what doesn’t, to reach the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs),
  • and because we have the means to improve the lives of people – how we all live, work and interact.

We have a shared vision for a UN striving to make a difference in all countries, with the leadership of national governments. And a UN development system that delivers on its commitments.

We expect integrated approaches, closer collaboration and better results. Along with, greater efficiency, transparency and accountability.

To this end, we have all signed up to the repositioning of the UN Development System, the major reform launched by the Secretary-General and the General Assembly.

But now, with all the new directions, processes, and tools that UN reform has given us, we must stop to ask: how we are doing?

How are plans being turned to action?

What has been the experience so far – particularly in areas where action matters most?

In July next year, 50 countries will present their voluntary national reviews at the High-level political forum on sustainable development (HLPF). Will they address the UN’s role in their efforts to reach the SDGs? If so, what will they say?

Today is a prime opportunity, to listen and learn. To address some of these open questions.


Resident Coordinators are at the forefront of providing support to national implementation.

They mobilise UN Country Teams to work with countries in accelerating progress towards the SDGs.

RC leadership is crucial. But do they have the tools needed to provide this leadership?

ECOSOC, through its Operational Activities Segment, gives guidance to the UN development system on key issues related to operational activities.

The 2020 segment will be a milestone in reviewing reform and looking ahead towards the 2020 QCPR.

This includes, inter alia, progress on three areas:

One:  the reinvigorated Resident Coordinator system;

Two: the new Sustainable Development Cooperation Framework, with a new generation of UN Country Teams; and,

Three: the review of regional and multi-country offices.

ECOSOC will engage UN Country Teams as well as other stakeholders. And benefit from the presence of RCs and UN country representatives.

We also plan to invite representatives of UN partners in countries.

We hope this will supplement the presentation by governments in a useful manner, to ensure we have a thorough and forward looking segment. Hearing these different perspective on our progress towards improving the coherence, effectiveness, efficiency and relevance of the UN development system is vital.

I also want to take this opportunity to ask for the support of Resident Coordinators in mobilising countries to meaningfully participate in the HLPF ECOSOC Forums on Segments. As well as in assisting young people to participate in two youth events next year: the Youth Plenary, which I will co-convene with the President of the General Assembly, and the ECOSOC Youth Forum.

Dear Colleagues,

Unless we see a reformed UN, our credibility is at stake.

The true test of our success will be whether countries, communities and people experience tangible improvements in their lives, and in their societies.

Let us use every opportunity presented by this gathering of Resident Coordinators to reach that goal.