of the draft
plan in English.
ECONOMIC AND SOCIAL COMMISSION FOR ASIA AND THE PACIFIC
PROGRAMME PLANNING: DRAFT MEDIUM-TERM PLAN OF ESCAP FOR THE PERIOD 2002-2005
(Item 8 (a) of the provisional agenda)
Note by the secretariat
1. The medium-term plan is a translation of legislative mandates of the United Nations into programmes, and serves as a four-year strategic plan of the Organization. It sets the programme framework, which reflects congruence between the programmatic and organizational structures so as to enhance accountability and foster the link between the plan and the programme budget.
2. In accordance with the Regulations and Rules Governing Programme Planning, the Programme Aspects of the Budget, the Monitoring of Implementation and the Methods of Evaluation,(1) the Secretary-General will submit medium-term plan proposals for the period 2002-2005 to the General Assembly for consideration and endorsement at its fifty-fifth session in 2000. Prior to the submission to the General Assembly, the Secretary-General's proposals will be reviewed by the Committee for Programme and Coordination (CPC), the Advisory Committee on Administrative and Budgetary Questions (ACABQ) and the Economic and Social Council, scheduled to meet during the period June-July 2000. As the regional arm of the United Nations, the secretariat is required to prepare its part of the medium-term plan, Programme 15: Economic and social development in Asia and the Pacific.
3. Following the instructions from United Nations Headquarters, the secretariat commenced in August 1999 the preparatory work for the formulation of the draft medium-term plan of ESCAP for the period 2002-2005, comprising (i) the overview of the programme; (ii) the narratives for the seven subprogrammes determined by the Commission at its fifty-fourth session in 1998; and (iii) the list of Commission, Economic and Social Council and/or General Assembly resolutions relevant to the subprogrammes. The overview of the draft plan was reviewed by the Advisory Committee of Permanent Representatives and Other Representatives Designated by Members of the Commission (ACPR) at its two hundred and thirty-eighth session, held in August 1999, and revised to incorporate its views and suggestions. Subsequently, the draft narratives for the seven subprogrammes were formulated. Each of the seven subprogramme narratives were reviewed either by ACPR or the concerned intergovernmental subsidiary body of the Commission during the period September-December 1999.
4. The draft medium-term plan of ESCAP, in its entirety, was considered and generally endorsed by ACPR at its two hundred and forty-third session, held in January 2000. Simultaneously, the secretariat circulated the draft medium-term plan to 22 member and associate member governments that are not represented in ACPR so that their concerns and recommendations could also be reflected. Feedback was received from the Governments of Niue and Samoa endorsing the draft and expressing their appreciation for the opportunity to give their comments.
5. In February 2000, United Nations Headquarters issued to all departments, including ESCAP, further instructions for the formulation of the medium-term plan proposals for the period 2002-2005. The instructions were prepared taking into account the revised rules related to the revised programme planning regulations approved by the General Assembly at its fifty-fourth session in December 1999. In compliance with the instructions, the draft medium-term plan of ESCAP was revised to incorporate strategies, expected accomplishments and indicators of achievements in each of the seven subprogramme narratives. The revised draft medium-term plan of ESCAP was submitted to United Nations Headquarters on 1 March 2000 for further review to ensure a uniform presentation, to the extent possible, of all medium-term plan proposals of the United Nations, for consideration of CPC at its fortieth session, scheduled to be held in June-July 2000. Since then consultations have continued between the secretariat at ESCAP and at United Nations Headquarters with a view to improving, in particular, the expected accomplishments and indicators of achievement in the subprogramme narratives of the draft medium-term plan.
6. On 4 April 2000, the secretariat received an advance copy of the draft medium-term plan, as approved by the Steering Committee on Reform and Management at United Nations Headquarters, but still pending the formal editing and translation to the other official languages. According to the latest schedule, it is envisaged that the proposed medium-term plan of ESCAP will be edited formally at Headquarters and made available to the secretariat at ESCAP in the second week of May 2000 for dissemination to the members and associate members of the Commission. To ensure that members and associate members of the Commission will have sufficient time to review the draft medium-term plan, the secretariat transmits in advance herewith the unedited version of the draft medium-term plan in English only. The official version of the proposed medium-term plan for the period 2002-2005 will be submitted as document E/ESCAP/1185/Rev.1.
1. See A/54/125, annex.