United Nations Economic and Social Council

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President of ECOSOC (six month term)
As of 2010: Datuk Hamidon Ali[1]

The Economic and Social Council (ECOSOC) of the United Nations constitutes one of six principal organs of the United Nations responsible for the coordination of economic, social, and related work of 14 UN specialized agencies, its functional commissions and five regional commissions. ECOSOC has 54 members and holds one substantive session each July for a duration of four weeks. Since 1998, it also held a meeting each April with finance ministers heading key committees of the World Bank and the International Monetary Fund (IMF). The ECOSOC serves as the central forum for discussing international economic and social issues, and for formulating policy recommendations addressed to Member States and the United Nations system.[2]



The Economic and Social Council Chamber in the United Nations Conference Building, was a gift from Sweden. It was conceived by the Swedish architect Sven Markelius, one of the 11 architects in the international team that designed the UN Headquarters. Swedish pine wood has been used around the delegates area, and for the railings and doors.

A special feature of the room are the exposed pipes and ducts in the ceiling above the public gallery. The architect believed that anything useful could be left uncovered. The "unfinished" ceiling is commonly seen as a symbolic reminder that the economic and social work of the United Nations never finishes; there will always be something more that can be done to improve the living conditions of the world's people.[3]


The current president of ECOSOC is Ambassador Datuk Hamidon Ali of Malaysia. The president is elected for an one-year term and chosen among the small or middle powers represented on ECOSOC.[4]

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