United Nations in the India is led by the UN Resident Coordinator, Mr. Patrice Coeur-Bizot, who is the designated representative of the UN Secretary General and leader of the UN Country Team. The UN Country Team, which consists of Heads of UN Agencies, steers the work of the UN within India. The Resident Coordinator mechanism focuses on Joint Programmes, Teams (security, disaster, operations, AHI), Advocacy with national and provincial elected representatives, UNDAF common programming, planning and monitoring, resource mobilization, HACT and popularizing and localizing MDGs.
The UN in India has harmonized the UNDAF with national goals as articulated in the 11th Five-year Plan of the Government of India to facilitate ‘inclusive growth’. Accordingly, the UNDAF India 2008-2012 focuses on delivering results to the excluded groups, especially women and girls, and was approved by the Planning Commission, Government of India in February 2007. The following is a brief note on individual UN entity’s priority areas in India.
APCTT: The APCTT works on technology transfer services, technology capacity-building, promotion and management of innovation as well as sub-regional and regional networking. ESCAP: UNESCAP is the regional development arm of the UN and serves as the main economic and social development centre for the UN in Asia and the Pacific. The mandate of UNESCAP is to foster cooperation between its 53 members and nine associate members.
In December 2011, ESCAP set up its sub-regional office for South and South West Asia (SRO-SSWA) in New Delhi, launched with a high-level policy dialogue on development challenges facing the sub-region. The SRO-SSWA strives to facilitate regional economic cooperation and the sharing of development experiences in support of MDG achievement with a focus on least developed countries within the sub-region. It serves 10 countries in the sub-region, namely: Afghanistan, Bangladesh, Bhutan, India, Islamic Republic of Iran, Maldives, Nepal, Pakistan, Sri.
Lanka and Turkey. FAO: FAO focuses on technical assistance in facilitating multi-lateral cooperatio0n to reduce the risk to food security and economic growth, offering support to the national government in strengthening the implementation of national missions and programmes aimed at reducing poverty and piloting innovative approaches and piloting innovative approaches with governments, NGOs and private sector in agricultural and rural development.
IFAD: IFAD’s focus is on providing access to improved livelihood opportunities for tribal communities in semi-arid areas, microfinance services, and use of new technologies for agriculture to help reduce poverty. IFC: IFC has doubled its budget in the area of its main focus- infrastructure- to $600 million. Areas of work are natural gas, wind power, port services, and developing PPP in infrastructure sector. ILO: The overarching goal of ILO work is Decent Work (DW), i. e. , promoting opportunities for all women and men to obtain decent and productive work in conditions of freedom, equity, security and dignity.
ILO’s Programme has been finalized jointly with its partners – Government, employers and workers. IMF: The focus of IMF’s work is to facilitate the flow of information between the Government of India, the Reserve Bank of India and the IMF and train officials from RBI, national and state governments. UNAIDS: The UNAIDS in India coordinates technical support with all development partners for implementation of the third five-year phase of the National AIDS Control Programme. It also generates strategic information to track and monitor the epidemic.
UNODC: UNODC activities in India focus on drug abuse awareness, preventing transmission of HIV, precursor chemical control, human trafficking and in new areas such as prison reforms, migrants and anti corruption. UNDP: UNDP works to support Government at all levels and communities in villages and towns on inclusive governance, livelihoods promotion, stemming the spread of HIV/AIDS. In areas prone to natural disasters, UNDP helps further efforts aimed at building the resilience of communities at risk.
UNDP is committed to help India achieve MDGs as well as the national objectives articulated in consecutive Five-Year Plans. UNESCO: UNESCO’s work in India focuses on capacity building in the areas of education, natural, social and human sciences, heritage sites, culture and strengthening communication and information capacities UNIC: The UNIC was the first United Nations office to be established in India and also covers Bhutan. UNIC’s work includes informing media, governments, NGOs, academia and general public about the work of the United Nations.
UNFPA: UNFPA works within the SWAP on the Reproductive and Child Health programme (RCH II) within the rubric of the National Rural Health Mission (NRHM) till 2010. UNFPA, in addition, provides support for addressing pre-natal sex selection and gender based violence, improving adolescent sexual and reproductive health, promoting safe sexual behaviour, mainstreaming RH and gender in disaster response, and promoting population and development strategies. UNHCR: The UNHCR protects and assists some 11,500 refugees in India.
While India is not a signatory to the 1951 Refugee Convention or its Protocol of 1967, it has been a member of UNHCR’s Executive Committee in Geneva since 1996. UNICEF: The India Country Programme is UNICEF’s largest country programme of cooperation. The overall goal of the Country Programme is to advance the fulfillment of the rights of all women and children in India to survival, development, participation and protection by reducing social inequalities based on gender, caste, ethnicity or region.
UNIDO: The UNIDO’s Regional Office for South Asia acts to mobilize knowledge, information, skills and technology to promote competitive industry, productive employment and sound environment. UN Women: Advancement of women’s rights being the centre of all its efforts, UN Women focuses its activities on three strategic areas: i) Enhancing women’s economic security and rights; ii) Reducing prevalence of violence against women and HIV/AIDS iii) Advancing gender justice in democratic governance and iv) capacity building of women elected representatives.
UNMOGIP: The UNMOGIP observes developments pertaining to the adherence of the cease-fire of December 1971 and report these to the Secretary-General. Based in both India and Pakistan, UNMOGIP has field stations , Liaison Office in New Delhi (India) administrative and Logistics HQ in Rawalpindi (Pakistan), and Operational HQ (alternates six-Monthly between Rawalpindi (Pakistan) and Srinagar (Jammu and Kashmir). UNOPS: UNOPS’ India Procurement Office (IPO) has been operating from New Delhi since September 2007. It operates, currently, as a procurement agent for Government of India, Ministry of Health and Family Welfare.
WB: The World Bank’s Country Strategy for 2009-2012 focuses on helping the country to fast- track the development of much needed infrastructure and to support the seven poorest states achieve higher standards of living. WFP: The World Food Programme’s Country Programme (2008-12) has three major components I) capacity development to improve the performance of food based schemes ii) Improving nutritional status of women and children through fortification initiatives and support to the ICDS and iii) )Improving food security by creating assets and reducing vulnerability through food for work projects.
WHO: In India, WHO provides technical assistance and collaborates with the Government of India and major stakeholders in health development efforts. It assists notably in Policy Development; Capacity Building and Advocacy. The four main strategic objectives of WHO in India are: (i) reduce the burden of communicable and emerging diseases; (ii) promote maternal and child health; (iii) scale up prevention and control of non-communicable diseases (NCDs) ; and (iv) strengthen health systems development within the national and global environment, with a focus on human resources.
UNCTAD: UNCTAD assists Indian policy makers (the Ministry of Commerce, area focus ministries like textiles, small scale industry, women and child development and local governments) and other stakeholders (industry, civil society) in understanding the developmental dimension of key trade issues, as they relate to negotiations in the WTO and other trading arrangements.
UN HABITAT: The Programme focuses on: i) Pro-poor Urban Water Governance, ii) Urban Water Demand Management, iii) Integrated Urban Environmental Sanitation, and iv) Creation of income generation opportunities for the urban poor by involving them in the management and delivery of community-based water and sanitation services. UN Millennium Campaign: The UNMC works in close collaboration with the UNRC mechanism for promoting MDGs, especially focusing on civil society initiatives. ITC, Geneva: International Trade Centre, Geneva has operations in India and works as a Non Resident Agency.