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India elected to UN Statistical Commission

  • Published
    6th Apr, 2023
Context

In a significant victory, India was overwhelmingly elected to the UN Statistical Commission, returning to the world organisation's highest statistical body after a gap of two decades after a “competitive” election.

About
  • India was elected by the UN Economic and Social Council (ECOSOC) as a member of the UN Statistical Commission.
  • ECOSOC elected India and Cambodia for a term of office beginning on April 5, 2023, and expiring on December 31, 2025, to fill outstanding vacancies from the Asia-Pacific States in the Programme Coordinating Board of the Joint United Nations Programme on HIV/AIDS (UNAIDS).
  • The UN statistical commission is the Commission on Narcotic Drugs, and the Programme Coordinating Board of the Joint UN Programme on HIV/AIDS (UNAIDS).
  • It is also an important subsidiary body of the UN organ focussed on economic, social and environmental issues.
  • India, along with South Korea, UAE, and China were in the competition for two seats from the Asia Pacific States category.
  • In a highly competitive election for membership to the Statistical Commission, India secured an overwhelming 46 out of 53 votes in a secret ballot.
  • In the election, South Korea won over China for the other seat in the Asia Pacific States category.
  • As per the Council’s rules of procedure, South Korea was elected for the second seat by drawing lots following two inconclusive rounds of secret-ballot voting.

Austria, Armenia, Finland, Hungary, Italy, Malta, the Netherlands, Poland, Portugal, Spain, the United Kingdom and the United States were elected for the term of 4 years in office by secret ballot.

Significance of India’s membership:

  • India was a member of the Statistical Commission last in 2004 and the country is returning to the UN agency after a gap of two decades.
  • The experience of India in the field of official statistics especially with regard to its diversity and demography is immense and will be a valuable addition to the functioning of the UN Statistical Commission.

UN Statistical Commission:

  • The UN Statistical Commission, established in 1947, is the highest body of the global statistical system bringing together the Chief Statisticians from member states from around the world.
  • It is the highest decision-making body for international statistical activities, responsible for setting statistical standards and the development of concepts and methods, including their implementation at the national and international levels.
  • The Commission consists of 24 member countries of the United Nations elected by the United Nations Economic and Social Council on the basis of equitable geographical distribution.
  • Regional representation:
    • Five members are from African States
    • four from Eastern European States
    • four from Latin American and Caribbean States
    • Seven members from Western European and other States.
  • The current members from the Asia-Pacific States are Japan (2024), Samoa (2024) as well as Kuwait and South Korea, whose terms are ending this year.

 

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