Statements

(As delivered)

 

Statement by H.E. Mr. Motohide Yoshikawa

Permanent Representative of Japan to the United Nations

UNICEF Executive Board, First Regular Session 2014

Item 11: Pledging Event

 

6 February 2014

 

 

Statement by H.E. Mr. Motohide Yoshikawa

Permanent Representative of Japan to the United Nations

UNICEF Executive Board, First Regular Session 2014

Item 11: Pledging Event

 

6 February 2014

 

 

Mr. President,

Mr. Executive Director,

Ladies and Gentlemen,

 

May I start by expressing my sincere condolences for the two UNICEF staff members, Ms. Khan and Ms. Hassan, who lost their lives in the terrorist attack in Kabul which took place on January 17th.

 

Mr. President,

 

Since this is my first occasion to deliver a statement to the Executive Board, I would like to extend my warmest congratulations to you, Ambassador Kamau, on your election as President of the Executive Board for 2014, and to the newly elected Vice-Presidents. I would like to also thank former President, Ambassador Viinanen for his excellent work during the last session.

 

UNICEF is one of the best known UN agencies in Japan. Mr. Lake, when you go to Japan, you can check what I say is true or not by asking somebody on the street whether he or she knows UNICEF.

 

What Japan wants to do is to support children at risk from conflict and disaster through UNICEF. It is the children we care for.

 

We value the efforts by the Executive Director of UNICEF, toward fund-raising and the promotion of the efficiency and effectiveness of the organization.

 

Japan, together with our National Committee, has long been one of the top donors to UNICEF. And I wish to emphasize as I did in the video, that in 2013, the Japanese Government increased its contribution to core resources by 31%.

 

Today, I wish to present our forthcoming contribution to UNICEF.

 

I will be brief, as we will be distributing information in writing, but the salient points are as follows:

 

As to the core resources, recognizing its importance, we have already submitted our budget proposal to the Diet for the amount of 22 million USD. This will be approved before the end of March.

 

Second is the non-core resources, which consists of two parts. The first part is humanitarian assistance to UNICEF which will be about 110 million USD, covering Sub-Saharan Africa, the Middle East and North Africa, Afghanistan and the Philippines.

 

The second part of the non-core resources is Grant Assistance for Afghanistan, Pakistan, Cameroon, Myanmar and Haiti for their vaccination and water supply programmes in collaboration with UNICEF. And this will be 2.5 billion JPY which is about 25 million USD.

 

Now total amount will be something like 155 million USD.

 

I wish to emphasize that my Government has made these pledges under two difficulties. One is the severe budgetary situation which still continues. It is true that the Japanese economy is perking up. But it has not translated in an increase of tax revenue.

 

The second difficulty that we are facing is the depreciation or the decreased value of the Japanese Yen vis-a-vis the US Dollars, and also the Euro.

 

These two conditions, particularly the second one make our budgeting very difficult, not only to the United Nations, but all the international organizations. I hope that you appreciate these difficulties. Our pledge has been made based on our strong commitment to and trust in UNICEF.

 

And on the same token, we expect UNICEF to make every effort to extend its assistance effectively and efficiently so that the high reputation that UNICEF holds in Japan will be maintained.

 

Finally, I wish to add that we look forward to welcoming Mr. Lake in Japan this month. I hope that his visit will be another opportunity to enhance our long-time relationship of cooperation.

 

I thank you Mr. President.

 

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