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Item 12.2 Proposed programme budget 2018-2019

Statement by Norway at # EB140 // 26.01.2017

Item 12.2 Proposed programme budget 2018-2019

We made most of our general remarks to the budget at PBAC, and will not repeat them extensively here. We are overall satisfied with the profile of the proposed Programme Budget, we are positive to the proposed increases to AMR and to the Emergency Programme, but find the decrease in Health and environment unfortunate. We are positive to the proposed increase in assessed contributions.

We note that an outcome of PBAC is that further informal discussions will take place following the EB. We will participate in these, and would broadly agree with Colombia’s summation earlier today of what the focus of that process should be. We would not want these discussions to assume the shape of member state negotiations to determine cuts in specific areas of the budget proposal for 18/19, and do not regard this as a “budget renegotiation process”, to refer to the phrase used by Spain just now. The secretariat must pursue the further work with the budget proposal on the basis of clear strategic priorities, which must also guide any proposals they present to member states.    

We do consider the emergency Programme and AMR to be strong priority areas. The current state of financing of the emergency programme is not surprising, given the short time that has passed since its establishment. As donors, we remain committed to this priority, but urge patience in allowing sufficient time for the financing to be mobilized. The present budget proposal represents the cost of the capacities we have asked for, and these capacities and their cost have been presented to us in great detail – certainly more so than we have been used to for other areas of the budget. They have not been fundamentally questioned. It would hence be problematic if the programme does not receive the budget space that this requires, and which is proposed in the current draft budget. It would in our opinion represent a premature reaction to the current funding situation of the program, and would put into question WHOs commitment to deliver on post-Ebola expectations. This would in turn have a negative effect on fundraising. If the budget proposal for AMR should be revised downwards, it would seriously hamper WHOs ability to deliver on its HLM and GAP commitments, before this work has gotten fully underway.