United Nations Economic Commission for Europe

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Executive Secretary of ECE

The United Nations Economic Commission for Europe (UNECE or ECE) was established in 1947[2][3] to encourage economic cooperation among its member states. It is one of five regional commissions under the administrative direction of United Nations headquarters. It has 56 member states, and reports to the UN Economic and Social Council (ECOSOC). As well as countries in Europe, it includes Canada, the Central Asian republics, Israel and the United States of America. The UNECE secretariat headquarters is in Geneva, Switzerland, and has an approximate budget of US$50 million.[4]

Contents

Member states

The 56 member countries are listed below.

Note: 15 of the UNECE's 56 member countries are recipients of official development assistance.

Committee on Environmental Policy

UNECE’s concern with problems of the environment dates back at least to 1971, when the group of Senior Advisors to the UNECE governments on environmental issues was created which led to the establishment of the Committee on Environmental Policy, which now meets annually. The committee provides collective policy direction in the area of environment and sustainable development, prepares ministerial meetings, develops international environmental law and supports international initiatives in the region. The committee’s work is based on three strategic pillars: [5]

  • Participation in the two major international cooperative processes, the "Environment for Europe" process and the regional promotion of Agenda 21;
  • The development and carrying-out of Environmental Performance Reviews in the central and eastern European countries; and
  • The increase of the overall effectiveness of environmental conventions and of the exchange of experience on their implementation. See for example the UNECE Espoo Convention, Aarhus Convention and Convention on Long-Range Transboundary Air Pollution.

Committee on Housing and Land Management

In 1947, UNECE set up a Panel on Housing Problems, which later evolved into the Committee on Human Settlements and after the reform in 2005/2006 into the Committee on Housing and Land Management. The Committee is an intergovernmental body of all UNECE member States. It provides a forum for the compilation, dissemination and exchange of information and experience on housing, urban development, and land administration policies. [6]

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