NATIONS INDUSTRIAL DEVELOPMENT ORGANIZATION
ORIGINS AND BACKGROUND
The United Nations Industrial Development Organization (UNIDO) is the specialized UN agency promoting sustainable and environmentally-friendly industrial development to create employment and reduce poverty. It was founded by the UN General Assembly in 1966, with the mandate to act as the central coordinating body for industrial activities within the UN system and to promote industrial development and cooperation at global, regional and sectoral levels. It became the 16th UN specialized agency in 1985.
UNIDOs current membership numbers 168 countries. They meet once every two years at the General Conference, which approves the budget and work programme. The conference also appoints the Director-General, normally at four-year intervals. The Industrial Development Board (53 Member States) reviews implementation of the work programme and the budget which is prepared by a subsidiary body, the Programme and Budget Committee (27 Member States).
UNIDOs financial resources come from regular and operational budgets, as well as special contributions for technical cooperation activities. Derived from Member States assessed contributions, the regular budget of UNIDO for 1998-1999 amounted to US$129.5 million.
UNIDO maintains offices in the following countries: Africa--Cameroon, Cτte dIvoire, Ethiopia, Ghana, Guinea, Kenya, Nigeria, Senegal, Tanzania, Togo and Zambia; Arab region--Algeria, Egypt, Lebanon and Sudan; Asia--China, India, Indonesia, Nepal, Pakistan, Philippines and Viet Nam; Latin America--Argentina, Colombia, Honduras, Mexico and Jamaica; and Europe--Turkey.
UNIDO offices are located in Geneva and New York for maintaining contacts with Member States and other United Nations organizations. UNIDO Country Representatives are responsible for the industrial sector of the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) country programmes and assist UNDP Resident Representatives, who serve as UNIDO representatives in developing countries. Resident Representatives and UNIDO Country Representatives are assisted by Junior Professional Officers (JPOs) funded by contributions from donor countries.
UNIDO operates a network of Investment Promotion Services (IPS) offices financed by the countries in which they are located: Austria, Bahrain, Belgium, China, Egypt, France, Greece, India, Italy, Japan, Poland, Republic of Korea, Russian Federation and United Kingdom. These offices promote business contacts between industrialized and developing countries and economies in transition.
UNIDOs new integrated package of services was developed and approved by its Member States. The 16 Service Modules were designed to meet specific needs and requests of developing countries and economies in transition. Once adapted and customized to the specific needs of individual countries, these services promote the three Es of the Business Plan on the Future Role and Functions of UNIDO. They are competitive economy, productive employment and sound environment. The organizations activities concentrate on offering packages of integrated services providing three key elements for sustainable industrialization at the policy, institutional and enterprise level. These are listed below.
-- Competitive economy--industrial policy formulation and implementation; statistics and information networks; metrology, standardization, certification and accreditation; continuous improvements and quality management; and investment and technology promotion.
-- Sound environment--environmental policy framework, United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change and the Kyoto Protocol, energy efficiency, rural energy development, cleaner production, pollution control and waste management, and the Montreal Protocol on Substances that Deplete the Ozone Layer.
-- Productive employment--small and medium-sized enterprises, policy framework, women entrepreneurs, entrepreneurship development, upgrading agro-industries and related technical skills.
UNIDO cooperates with a broad range of international, national and local civil society organizations (CSOs) including industry and business associations; chambers of commerce and industry; professional organizations; technology associations; cooperatives; development NGOs; specialized civil society organizations in the areas of environment, women, information and standardization; technical associations; trade and consumer unions; foundations; and research and development institutions as well as universities.
Because of their direct and daily interaction with UNIDOs actual and potential beneficiaries, CSOs and UNIDO constitute a complementary and powerful force aimed at achievement of their common objectives in promoting and assisting industrialization. The involvement of CSOs in the UNIDO project ensures ownership of programmes and projects implemented. CSOs build local constituencies for UNIDO policies and programmes, thus increasing the visibility and legitimacy of industrial development activities. Strengthened cooperation between UNIDO and CSOs active in industrial development not only strengthens and enhances their role as service providers to private sector entities, but also enhances their increasingly important role as agents for policy change.
Cooperation with industry-related CSOs relates to a strengthened policy dialogue, technical cooperation activities, and CSO capacity building and institutional development.
Strengthened policy dialogue includes the involvement of national industry-related CSOs in programming activities and consultations with national and international CSOs at the strategic, policy and programme levels.
The involvement of industry-related CSOs in technical cooperation activities helps to strengthen the impact and sustainability of UNIDO activities. It also provides access to real needs at the community level, enhances the self-sufficiency of beneficiaries, and reinforces mutual attempts to create and strengthen a vibrant civil society at the country and international level. This includes partnership arrangements; the involvement of CSOs in the formulation stage of programmes and projects, their cooperation in the implementation phase through subcontracting and use of consultancy services, as well as their cooperation as counterpart organizations hosting UNIDO activities.
Industry-related CSO capacity building and institutional development aims to strengthen industrial, business and professional organizations in developing countries and countries in transition at the micro and macro levels. At the micro level this includes the establishment of new and the strengthening of existing industry-related CSOs. Technical and advisory services as well as training are provided to build a particular capacity or skill within an organization with the aim of strengthening technical, legal, training and managerial capacities. Activities at the macro level include promotion of dialogue between governments, the private sector and industry-related CSOs, promotion of CSO networking and coalition building, as well as the establishment of supra-national institutional frameworks.
International and national CSOs may apply for consultative status with UNIDO, which entitles them to participate in deliberations of the Industrial Development Board and the General Conference. At present, 122 CSOs enjoy consultative status.
Doris Hribernigg, NGO Coordinator, External Relations Service, UNIDO, Vienna International Centre, PO Box 300, A-1400 Vienna, Austria, telephone +43-1/21131 5376, fax +43-1/21131 6837 or 21131 6838.