United Nations Development Program (UNDP) is the most important body of the UN operational activities on assistance (financial, technical etc) for development purposes. UNDP was established in November 1965.
General management of the Program is carried out by the Executive Council, which consists of 36 members, representing both developing and industrialized countries. The head of UNDP is Administrator, appointed for four years by the Secretary General after a consultation with the Executive Board. His or her appointment is approved by the UN General Assembly. Since April 2009 the post of Administrator has been held by Ms. Helen Clark (New Zealand).
The aim of UNDP is to help developing countries and transition economies to increase their development potential. UNDP funds are made up of voluntary contributions from UN member states, UN agencies, NGOs and the private sector (in 2009 — 4,7 billion dollars per year).
With offices in 136 countries, UNDP has the largest network of field offices of all UN organizations providing development assistance. Through these offices the program supports development efforts in 166 countries, working with governments and NGOs.
Heads of offices usually work as Resident Coordinators of UN operational activities at the same time representing other entities of the Organization. The same applies to the UN Development Program representative in Belarus Antonius Broek (Netherlands). Mr. Broek combines this position with the functions of the UN Resident Coordinator in Belarus.
The priorities of UNDP are to help the countries under consideration achieve the Millennium Development Goals, eradicate poverty, reinforce national institutions in the field of macroeconomic management, protect environment, promote employment, provide advancement of women, combat HIV / AIDS and others.
Cooperation of the Republic of Belarus and UNDP started in 1992 when the Permanent UN / UNDP office appeared in Minsk and short-term program of UNDP in Belarus for 1992 – 1994 was accepted. Belarus was allocated about 1.5 million U.S. dollars under the program on addressing socioeconomic objectives.
Further cooperation lied in human resource development, consolidation of state administration potential, industrial restructuring, conversion of military bases, mitigation of the Chernobyl aftermath.
In 1999-2001 and 2005-2007, the Republic of Belarus was part of the UNDP Executive Board.
In 2001-2005 in Belarus, the UNDP implemented two programs: Second country cooperation framework (CCF) for 2001-2005 and UNDP Regional Cooperation Programme for Europe, 2002-2005.
Through CCF the UNDP supported Belarus mainly in socioeconomic development, elimination of the Chernobyl accident consequences and health care. In 2001 – 2004, 28 UNDP technical assistance projects were implemented with funding of about $ 6m. The most significant of them include: Assisting the Government of the Republic of Belarus in the development and implementation of National Sustainable Development Strategy, Strengthening partnerships and resource mobilization to mitigate the Chernobyl disaster consequences, Developing an infrastructure to support innovation activity in the Republic of Belarus, Small business support and development.
To the regional cooperation program belonged projects with the participation of Belarus on poverty eradication, ensuring equal development opportunities, open accountable anti-corruption policy.
In general, UNDP activities in Belarus have become a considerable factor in addressing socioeconomic problems of transition. Largely this is due to non-political approach to existing problems, to the fact that the Representative office targets development priorities and needs of our country. For 1994-2005 (12 years of cooperation) more than $ 30 million were attracted through UNDP to the country.
Third Country Programme UNDP for Belarus for 2006-2010 was approved by the Executive Board of UNDP / UNFPA at its January 2006 session. The Belarusian government took part in the development of the Program. This allowed to include issues of cooperation that meet the national interests of the country.
In the framework of the program more than twenty international technical assistance projects are currently being implemented in five priority areas:
— economic growth and mounting living standards;
- effective and accountable governance;
— environmental sustainability;
— rehabilitation and sustainable development of areas affected by Chernobyl;
— transboundary cooperation.
Initially, the program seeks to raise resources for projects worth more than U.S. $ 33 million. From the regular budget the UNDP planned to allocate 4.1 million dollars. Resources amounting to $ 28 million are expected to be attracted from other UN agencies and international donors. About $ 2 million was to be drawn from the national sources. However, in practice, the estimated fundraising rates were significantly exceeded. Total funds to be disbursed under the program by December 2010 will be about $ 70 million. Only for the year 2010 nearly $ 20 million was spent for these purposes.
The largest projects are undertaken together with the Global Fund to Fight AIDS, Tuberculosis and Malaria. They are connected with the prevention and treatment of HIV / AIDS and support the State Programme Tuberculosis.
With the support and funding from the European Commission and other international donors to UNDP other large projects are carried out in Belarus, for example, in energy efficiency and conservation economy, socioeconomic and environmental recovery of areas affected by the Chernobyl disaster, the expansion of microfinance and microcredit, combating human trafficking and other important areas .
In 2010 the Government of Belarus together with the UNDP Office developed a draft of the fourth country program for Belarus for 2011 — 2015 with the planned financing of international technical assistance projects worth more than $ 80 million. In September 2010, it was approved by the Executive Board of UNDP / UNFPA.
In 2011 a new country program is to be launched, targeting four priority areas:
— economic development and social protection;
— energy saving and environmental protection;
— preventing HIV / AIDS spread and prevention of tuberculosis;
— effective and accountable governance, human security.
The program may be amended to make sure it targets the ultimate implementation of the Programme of socio-economic development of Belarus for 2011 — 2015.