United Nations is broke – Secretary General Antonio Guterres tells 37,000 UN employees

The United Nations (UN) may run out of money by the end of October 2019, Secretary General Antonio Guterres has warned as he urges countries to pay their contributions in full to avert shutdown.

Guterres announced that the intergovernmental organization tasked with maintaining international peace and security is broke at the UN secretariat in a letter intended for the 37,000 employees.

AFP reports that UN is running a deficit of Ksh 23 billion. The UN Secretary General is however taking measures to ensure salaries and entitlements for its employees are paid as expected.

In the letter to UN employees, Guterres notes that member states have only paid 70% of the total amount needed for UN’s regular budget operations in 2019.

UN Secretary General Antonio Guterres
UN Secretary General Antonio Guterres

As a result of countries not paying the full amount needed to fund UN budget, the world body got itself into a cash shortage of $230 million/Ksh 23 billion at the end of September 2019.

AFP reports that the UN Secretary General told staff in the letter that UN runs the risk of depleting its backup liquidity reserves by the end of October 2019.

Guterres mentioned postponing conferences and meetings and reducing services, while also restricting official travel to only essential activities and taking measures to save energy in a move meant to cut costs.

UN’s operating budget for 2018-2019 is close to $5.4 billion/Ksh 540 billion, US is the biggest contributor followed by China.

 

 

Sonkonews

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