UN gets India’s help


India pledges over $9 mn for UN development activities…reports Arul Louis 

UN-NEW YORK-GAZA-FLAG-HALF MASTAlthough India says it “has its own plate full of developmental challenges”, it pledged contributions of over $9.2 million for UN development activities in 2015.

Announcing the pledges earmarked for 13 programmes , Prakash Gupta of India’s UN Mission, said: “As a developing country, while India has its own plate full of developmental challenges to be addressed… we have always attempted to contribute to increasing the availability of core resources for development activities of the United Nations system.”

Speaking at the UN Pledging Conference, Gupta, a first secretary, said that in addition to these pledges India has contributed a total of $5 million to the UN Women Program over five years, with Sushma Swaraj handing over the final installment of $1 million to UN Women Executive Director Phumzile Mlambo-Ngcuka last month.

India’s biggest pledge, $4.5 million, was to the UN Development Program, followed by $1.92 million for the World Food Program, $1 million for UN Relief and Works Agency, which assists Palestinian refugees, and $900,000 for UNICEF.
Last year also India had pledged $9.288 million.
At the pledging conference, 26 countries pledged a total of $560 million, which is an increase of $72 million from pledges for the current year.
Andreas Riecken, the deputy permanent representative of Austria who is the president of the pledging conference, said the commitments were “substantially below current needs” of the UN development activities. The pledging conference, he said, was necessary for providing predictable and flexible funding for UN programmes.