Main issues

Romania at UN/ECE

The United Nations Economic Commission for Europe is one of the five regional commissions of the U.N. and serves as a regional instrument of the United Nations for "encouraging and strengthening the commitment of all its member countries to harmonious economic relations", as the member countries agreed in the "Plan of Action" adopted in 1997.

UN/ECE is a forum where the 55 countries of Europe, North America and Central Asia work together in order to create the tools of their economic cooperation.

The main realms of activity of the UN/ECE are economic analysis, environment and human settlements, statistics, trade, industry and enterprise development, transports.

The Commission has drawn up more than 30 legal instruments - conventions and protocols.

Romania has been participating in the activities of the UN/ECE since 1955 - when it became Member of the United Nations - having an active approach of the main areas of the Commission. In the last decade, Romania reaffirmed the importance of the UN/ECE especially for the countries with economies in transition, supported actively the process of reform of the Commission ( when the representatives of countries emphasized the need for efficiency and flexibility) accomplished in 1997, topped off with a "Plan of action". In the same time, Romania is in favour of the strengthening of the collaboration among the UN/ECE and other international organisations (e.g. the Organisation for the Security and the Cooperation in Europe) on the basis of the comparative advantage, and appreciates the efforts of the UN/ECE's Executive Secretary towards enhancing the effectiveness of the Commission and for developping the cooperation with the business sector and the civil society's representatives.

Romania hosted the 1974's session of the Commission and a host of technical meetings in the field of energy, transport, statistics, standardization, chemical industry, human settlements, forestry.

Romania ensured the chairmanship of the UN/ECE in 1961 - 1962, 1979 - 1980 ,1995 - 1996 (vice-chairman of the Commission in the period 1993-1994 and 1994-1995).

Romania is involved in the two regional projects for infrastructure - "Trans-European North-South Motorway" and "Trans-European Railway" ( the deputy manager of the second regional project is a Romanian expert from the Ministry of Public Works, Transport and Territorial Planning). The projects are the main mechanism for providing technical assistance to the countries with economies in transition. The assistance has been provided through the organization of meetings, preparation of documents, by establishing contacts with Governments in order to support the projects.

Romania has been participating since 1997 in the "spring seminars" - organized just before the annual session of the UN/ ECE - with experts in economics, fostering a proactive dialogue among the participants, as a precondition for interesting and useful conclusions for the stakeholders in the countries of the UN/ECE.

At the beginning of 2001, the "Country Profile for the Housing Sector", was finalized under the aegis of the UN/ECE - Committee on Human Settlements, which formulated practical recommendations for improving the performance of the housing sector. At the next session of the above-mentioned Committee (September 2001) the conclusions of the "Country Profile" will be presented.

In the same time, the fulfilment of another relevant study is under way, namely " Environmental Performance Review"; this study incorporates also recommendations in the sensitive field of the environmental protection, where the Romanian authorities are determined to take the necessary measures for implementing the provisions of the international Conventions and for avoiding accidentally pollution.