Thank you, Mr President, for the opportunity to respond to the Executive Director and Deputy Executiveís Directorís statement and we also thank the Executive Director for her considered and insightful report.
UNIFEM is implementing a wide range of initiatives in accordance with its Strategic Plan and with a tremendous number of partners. We recognise that the EDís report represents just one year of implementation against the plan, however, we would like to signal New Zealandís appreciation for the work of UNIFEM globally, and in the Pacific region.
Mr President, we would like to take this opportunity to comment briefly on four aspects of UNIFEMís work as outlined in the report. These are: Results; Capacity Development; Economic Development and HIV and AIDS.
We appreciate UNIFEMís efforts to report on the results of its endeavours. Progress to strengthen organisational results frameworks is evident as the report includes concrete examples of outcomes that were achieved at country level and we hope to see some examples from the Pacific region, in future. In the current environment, we are increasingly conscious of the need for evidence of results so our ability to draw upon these is appreciated. We anticipate this being further enhanced when the evaluation framework for the strategic plan and the baseline work is finalised next month. We hope that this might also go some way towards addressing the need for evaluations of strategies that prevent, respond to and end impunity for violence against women.
New Zealand anticipates UNIFEM playing an important role in developing the capacity of country level partners around gender equality and womenís empowerment. We therefore encourage UNIFEM to consider ways to strengthen its capacity development functions, including through ongoing training for its staff.
The New Zealand government has recently adjusted the focus of its aid programme to more clearly link economic development with its poverty reduction goals. In this respect, we are interested to note that the largest number of requests to UNIFEM were for support on womenís economic security and rights. We would be interested to learn more about UNIFEMís role in assessing the gender impacts of the economic crises and how UNIFEM programmes can best be oriented to address any issues. We hope to see some data on the Pacific which may inform New Zealandís activities in future.
And finally, on HIV and AIDS, we are aware that although UNIFEM is not a co-sponsor of UNAIDS (and reports a limited number of programmes to address the gender equality dimensions of HIV and AIDS), however, UNIFEM is playing an important role in supporting UNDPís work on gender sensitivities in AIDS responses.
Finally, we like many others have just become aware today of the UNIFEM briefing note on ďCriteria and Methodology for Regular Resource AllocationĒ. We would like to have more time to discuss and understand this important document, and request that this document be considered by the Executive Board in Septemberís second regular session.
In conclusion, Mr President, we look forward to welcoming Ms Alberdi in New Zealand in August.