November 25, 2017

Statement on behalf of the EU by Mrs. Maria Zoupaniotis, Counsellor of Cyprus Mission to the UN, on Population and Tax matters at General Segment of ECOSOC

Item 13: Economic and environmental questions

Wednesday, 25 July, afternoon

I have the honour to speak on behalf of the EU and its Member States. The Acceding country Croatia*, the former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia*, Montenegro*, Iceland** and Serbia*, the countries of the Stabilization and Association Process and potential candidate Bosnia and Herzegovina, as well as Ukraine, the Republic of Moldova and Georgia, align themselves with this statement.

Allow me to make a couple points on the sub-items population and development and international cooperation in tax matters.

The European Union and its Member States reaffirm their strong support for and commitment to the full implementation of the Cairo Programme of Action, as well as the key actions for the further implementation of the ICPD Programme of Action agreed at ICPD+5, and the Copenhagen Declaration and Action Programme; and also emphasize that gender equality cannot be achieved without guaranteeing women’s sexual and reproductive health and rights, and reaffirm that expanding access to sexual and reproductive health information and health services are essential for achieving the Beijing Platform for Action, the Cairo Programme of Action and the Millennium Development Goals. We welcome General Assembly resolution 65/234 which extended the Cairo Programme of Action beyond 2014.

The European Union and its Member States affirm their determination to give priority attention to addressing the challenges that hinder young people’s development, of both girls and boys, by investing further in the development of human capital, especially in education, health, including sexual and reproductive health, livelihoods skills and youth employment, in order to achieve poverty eradication, the realization of human rights and gender equality, the promotion of sustained, equitable and inclusive economic growth and sustainable development. It is also especially important that men and boys are informed and educated about their roles and responsibilities. In this regard, we welcome the work on youth and adolescents undertaken by the United Nations, most recently by the Commission on Population and Development.

In terms of the tax and development matters, Domestic Revenue Mobilization is growing as a priority for developing countries, as also reflected in the Busan Declaration on Partnership for Effective Development Cooperation. This is linked to the increasing focus that development policy and cooperation are placing on institution-building, accountability, development financing, policy ownership, leading to a lower reliance on development assistance.

We agree with the SG’s report on the role and work of the Committee of Experts on International Cooperation in Tax Matters released in February 2012 that the United Nations is well-placed to continue, through the Committee of Experts, to make a practical and enduring contribution to improving international tax cooperation. We recognize the need to ensure that the Committee maintains its effectiveness and current format and effectively deploys funding through existing mechanisms, including the Trust Fund for International Cooperation in Tax Matters.