Viewing cable 04WELLINGTON720
Title: NEW ZEALAND OFFERS VIEWS ON FIRST COMMITTEE REFORM

IdentifierCreatedReleasedClassificationOrigin
04WELLINGTON7202004-08-25 02:00:00 2011-08-30 01:44:00 UNCLASSIFIED Embassy Wellington
This record is a partial extract of the original cable. The full text of the original cable is not available.
UNCLAS WELLINGTON 000720 
 
SIPDIS 
 
DEPT FOR EAP/ANP 
 
E.O. 12958: N/A 
TAGS: PREL AORC NZ UNGA
SUBJECT: NEW ZEALAND OFFERS VIEWS ON FIRST COMMITTEE REFORM 
 
REF: A. STATE 171382 
 
     ¶B. STATE 160427 
 
¶1. Charlotte Elder, Disarmament Division, New Zealand 
Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Trade, provided a copy of the 
GoNZ's response to the request in Resolution 58/41 for 
suggestions on improving the effectiveness of the First 
(Disarmament) Committee.  Elder did not provide any specific 
comments on the note verbale delivered ref A.  The GoNZ 
response is as follows: 
 
Begin text: 
 
30 June 2004                        DIS/UN/2 
 
Disarmament and Decolonization Affairs Branch 
General Assembly and Economic and Social Council Affairs 
Division 
United Nations Headquarters 
 
IMPROVING THE EFFECTIVENESS OF THE FIRST COMMITTEE 
 
The Permanent Mission of New Zealand to the United Nations 
presents its compliments to the Disarmament and 
Decolonization Affairs Branch and has the honor to refer to 
Note DGACM/DDAB/2004/TR1, which requested the views of member 
states on the issue of improving the effectiveness of the 
methods of work of the First Committee. 
 
New Zealand would like to offer the following suggestions for 
First Committee reform. 
 
- Consideration should be given to shortening the time 
allotted to the Committee.  New Zealand considers that four 
weeks should be sufficient time to enable the Committee to 
complete its work.  The Committee could consider utilizing 
both morning and afternoon sessions.  Even if that is not 
feasible, the following reforms, together with good 
time-keeping, should enable the time currently allotted to 
the Committee to be reduced. 
 
- New Zealand supports shortening the time allowed for 
general debate from two weeks to one, to allow more time for 
specific debate. 
 
- New Zealand would like to see greater incorporation of 
external expertise into the Committee's deliberations.  In 
this context, New Zealand would support Ambassador Sareva of 
Finland's proposal of interactive debate sessions 
incorporating leading experts from academia and civil 
society.  These discussions, which we agree would 
appropriately span over two-three days, could address current 
key issues, providing focus and context for the Committee's 
work. 
 
- Debate should be conducted on the basis of a rolling 
speakers, list.  Once the speakers, list for each topic has 
been exhausted, debate should roll over into the next topic, 
making maximum use of the time available. 
 
- An enforced time limit should be considered for all 
statements.  If countries are aligned with a regional or 
group statement, national statements should be shortened or 
forsaken accordingly. 
 
- Delegations should be encouraged to re-examine the value of 
long-standing resolutions, with an eye to the merit of 
recycling texts with little or no alteration from year to 
year.  If countries feel that such resolutions contain key 
positions which are still relevant, they should consider 
submitting the resolutions on a biennial or triennial basis. 
 
End text. 
Swindells