Statement by Mr. Tomoya Yamaguchi, Second Secretary, Permanent Mission of Japan to the United Nations, On Agenda item 136: Standards of Accommodation for Air travel, The first resumed part of the seventy-third session of the Fifth Committee of the General Assembly

Thank you, Madame Chair.
 
I would like to thank the Secretariat and the ACABQ for their respective reports.
 
In line with Secretary General`s briefing on the financial situation of the Organization held on March 1st, we believe that more judicious use of funds, including for air travel, will result in a more resilient Organization.
 
Solid progress has been made over the last few years, as reflected in the Secretary General's report.  In particular, Japan welcomes the decision to eliminate first class travel of UN staff during last year’s session. However, my delegation strongly believes that further changes will merit consideration.  For example, we note with concern that overall costs related to air travel have increased year after year.  It would be worth discussing how we can reverse this trend while ensuring the smooth operation of the Organization, including through making better use of Internet and Communications Technology.
 
Madame Chair,
 
One of the relevant agenda items to be discussed during this session will be a single threshold for the use of business class.  My delegation believes that creating a single threshold with the aim of establishing a more simplified and efficient travel process is worth discussing. On the other hand, we would like to emphasize that further savings could be achieved by standardizing economy class in the UN, as it is the case for many Member States. In this connection, my delegation would like to pay close attention to whether a standard for business class solely based on travel time is adequate. We look forward to discussing this issue in the following deliberations.
 
In concluding, we reiterate our readiness to engage constructively with the aim of concluding this agenda item in a timely fashion.
 
Thank you Madame Chair.