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Press Releases

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List of Press Releases - 2015-39

France launches International Specialist Centre of Excellence for Public-Private Partnership Policy, Laws and Institutions (21 May 2015)

Partnerships with the private sector will be critical to mobilize the financing needed to implement the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) to be adopted in September 2015 by the UN General Assembly. Public-Private Partnerships (PPPs), including concessions, can play an important role in ...
UNECE and IATA Strengthen Cooperation for Trade Facilitation Implementation (12 May 2015)

The United Nations Economic Commission for Europe (UNECE) and the International Air Transport Association (IATA) today signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) to strengthen their support to developing countries seeking to implement the World Trade Organization (WTO) Trade Facilitation ...
UNECE, UNEP sign landmark agreement to strengthen partnership on green economy and sustainable development (08 May 2015)

The Executive Secretary of the United Nations Economic Commission for Europe (UNECE), Christian Friis Bach, and the Executive Director of the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP), Achim Steiner, signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) to reinforce the collaboration between UNEP and UNECE ...
Secretary-General appoints Jean Todt of France Special Envoy for Road Safety (30 April 2015)

United Nations Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon announced today the appointment of Jean Todt as his Special Envoy for Road Safety. Mr. Todt is the President of the Fédération Internationale de l’Automobile (FIA).   Every year, some 1.3 million people are killed and up to 50 million people ...
UNECE signs MoU with the International Gas Union (IGU) (30 April 2015)

Gas could play a key role in the transition towards a low carbon economy. In order to accelerate the move towards this transition, the United Nations Economic Commission for Europe (UNECE) and the International Gas Union (IGU) today signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) to formalize their ...
Private Sector keen to support countries in implementing the WTO Trade Facilitation Agreement (29 April 2015)

Private Sector representatives at the Global Facilitation Partnership meeting in Geneva last week stressed their willingness to support international organizations in assisting countries implement the recently concluded World Trade Organizations Trade Facilitation Agreement.  Speaking on ...
Air pollution costs European economies US$ 1.6 trillion a year (29 April 2015)

A staggering US$ 1.6 trillion is the economic cost of the approximate 600 000 premature deaths and of the diseases caused by air pollution in the WHO European Region in 2010, according to the first-ever study of these costs conducted for the Region. The amount is nearly equivalent to one tenth of ...
Use of United Nations Location Code can drastically reduce import/export costs (28 April 2015)

With more than 100,000 entries and a community of users from 249 countries, dependent territories and special areas, the United Nations Code for Trade and Transport Locations (UN/LOCODE) is a public good that helps reduce the cost of international trade. UN/LOCODE is used to identify ports, ...
Republic of Moldova and Ukraine endorse Strategic Framework for Adaptation to Climate Change for the Dniester Basin (23 April 2015)

Serhiy Kurykin, Deputy Minister of Ecology and Natural Resources of Ukraine, and Lazar Chirica, Deputy Minister of Environment of the Republic of Moldova, met today in Kyiv to launch the Strategic Framework for Adaptation to Climate Change for the Dniester Basin. The Strategic Framework will ...
UN Agencies Strengthen Cooperation for Trade Facilitation Implementation (22 April 2015)

Three key UN agencies signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) on 22 April 2015 to strengthen their support for developing countries as they implement the World Trade Organization's Trade Facilitation Agreement (WTO TFA). Under the terms of the MoU, UNCTAD, the International Trade Centre (ITC) ...
UNECE and FAO redouble efforts to address land management challenges (16 April 2015)

With 75 percent of the European population living in cities, more space is needed for expanding urban areas, yet at the same time there is a growing need for agricultural land and for the protection of key ecosystems. Rising competition for land ownership, reduced availability, and declining land ...
UNECE Ideas4Change Award goes Orange (15 April 2015)

Orange Fiber, an innovative Italian start-up producing textiles -  releasing vitamins on the skin –  from citrus waste, won the UNECE Ideas4Change Award, winning both the popular vote and that of the Jury. The competition featured the participation of 150 ideas from 25 countries of the ...
UNECE and Global NCAP call for worldwide adherence to UN car Safety Standards (14 April 2015)

Tens of thousands of deaths and hundreds of thousands of injuries could be avoided each year in the world if all countries would apply the safety standards outlined in the UN regulations developed by the World Forum for the Harmonization of Vehicle Regulations. This was the conclusion of the study ...
UNECE releases Quick Stats app (14 April 2015)

UNECE releases its first statistics mobile app, putting in your hands the key indicators you need about the UNECE region in a graphical format. With UNECE Quick Stats you have your main figures on economy, population, forestry or transport at your fingertips wherever and whenever you need ...
UNECE member States endorse Charter on Sustainable Housing (14 April 2015)

Countries in the region are facing enormous challenges in providing adequate housing to all, especially to vulnerable groups such as the young and the elderly. Uncontrolled urbanization has expanded informal settlements, where residents often lack security of tenure, infrastructure, water, ...
UNECE and the International Network of Basin Organizations launch flagship publication on water and climate change adaptation (13 April 2015)

Over 50 different experiences from river basins around the world have been compiled and analysed in the new publication “Water and climate change adaptation in transboundary basins: lessons learned and good practices”, prepared by the United Nations Economic Commission for Europe (UNECE) and ...
UNECE partners with the Government of Armenia to improve sustainable urban development (09 April 2015)

UNECE experts are visiting Armenia this week to conduct the research mission for the second Country Profile on Housing and Land Management of Armenia. The recommendations to be formulated in the Country Profile will form the basis of the country’s national action plan on sustainable housing and ...
Republic of Moldova, Romania and Ukraine test transboundary cooperation in case of an oil spill on the Danube within a UNECE project (02 April 2015)

For the first time, on 24 March 2015, the Republic of Moldova, Romania and Ukraine tested how the three countries would jointly cooperate to respond to an industrial accident with possible transboundary consequences, such as an oil spill that might reach the Danube Delta. After more than 2,000 ...
UNECE and IRU sign MoU on the computerization of the TIR procedure (eTIR) (27 March 2015)

An electronic TIR system could greatly improve the efficiency, speed and transparency of the TIR system, reduce administrative burdens and increase efficiency of international freight. This is why UNECE and the International Road Transport Union (IRU) signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) on ...
Financing for Development: regional dimension critical on the way to Addis Ababa and beyond (25 March 2015)

2015 is a landmark year, providing a historical opportunity to chart a new era of sustainable development.  Mobilising the required financing will be key to ensure that change actually happens. Financing needs are huge. Investment requirements in infrastructure only are estimated at $5-7 ...
New E-book Highlights Africa’s Road Safety Challenges, Calls for Continued Efforts (23 March 2015)

The United Nations Economic Commission for Europe (UNECE), the United Nations Economic Commission for Africa (UNECA), and the International Alliance for Responsible Drinking (IARD) launched a publication today focused on improving road safety and reducing drink driving in Africa. Preventing Drink ...
Forests in the Northern Hemisphere are growing but reforms are needed to maximise their economic and social use (20 March 2015)

While forest cover is expanding in the UNECE region, with an increase over the last 15 years of a total area of approximately the size of the United Kingdom, the income generated by forests and the related sectors is declining, the job force is shrinking, and many forest related services could be ...
Wildfires are increasingly dangerous in the UNECE region (18 March 2015)

Between 2011 and 2014, more than 776 people were killed and 532,000 evacuated in wildfire situations worldwide, and a total of 16,100 houses were destroyed. Based on modelling it is estimated that annual human mortality due to inhalation of fire-generated particulate matter (PM2.5) may reach ...
UNECE @ Sendai, #WCDRR (17 March 2015)

The Third World Conference on Disaster Risk Reduction (WCDRR) is taking place in Sendai  (14-18 March), Japan, four years to the date after the tragic events of the Great Japanese Earthquake, tsunami and nuclear meltdowns, which were among the many disasters that, altogether, have led to ...
Jordan initiates study of the UNECE Water Convention (17 March 2015)

Jordan has decided to study the implications of joining the United Nations Economic Commission for Europe (UNECE) Convention on the Protection and Use of Transboundary Watercourses and International Lakes (Water Convention), launching the process on 10 March 2015 with a national workshop on ...
UNECE helps Kyrgyzstan identify more efficient irrigation technologies (17 March 2015)

The introduction of sprinkler or drip irrigation in place of surface irrigation could boost agricultural productivity in Kyrgyzstan — where the agriculture sector consumes some 90 per cent of available water resources — while significantly reducing water use. These preliminary findings of a ...
PPPs for Smart and Sustainable Cities - New Specialist Centre in Barcelona (05 March 2015)

Barcelona will host the International Specialist Centre on Public-Private Partnerships (PPPs) in Smart and Sustainable Cities, as part of the UNECE International PPP Centre of Excellence. UNECE and IESE Business School – one of the leading business schools in Europe – signed a Memorandum of ...
UNECE welcomes extension of the guaranteeing agreement between the Federal Customs Service of the Russian Federation and the Association of International Road Carriers (27 February 2015)

The Federal Customs Service of the Russian Federation (FCS) decided on 26 February to prolong the agreement with the Association of International Road Carriers (ASMAP) until 30 June 2015, thus guaranteeing the implementation of the TIR Convention in the Russian Federation until that date. This was ...
From MDGs to SDGs – what have we learned? (26 February 2015)

Before we embark on the most ambitious development agenda ever as expressed by the proposed Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), we must learn from the past. The experience with implementing and monitoring the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) holds many lessons for the SDGs. These lessons are ...
Informal settlements remain a challenge in the pan-European region (25 February 2015)

In 2014, there were some 3.5 million informal buildings (i.e. constructed without building permits) in South-Eastern Europe, including approximately 2,500,000 in Greece; 500,000 in Albania; 350,000 in the former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia; and 130,000 in Montenegro.  In spite of the ...
The UN Centre for Trade Facilitation and Electronic Business (UN/CEFACT) approves a new Recommendation on consultation approaches in trade facilitation matters (18 February 2015)

A new UNECE Recommendation (No. 40) on consultation approaches in trade facilitation matters was approved on 16 February by the  UN/CEFACT Plenary at its 21th session.  Consultations will help governments and organizations prioritize agendas and communicate results which will build trust ...
Tajikistan to use UNECE recommendations for removing barriers to trade in its national development plan (18 February 2015)

Tajikistan will use UNECE recommendations for removing regulatory and procedural barriers to trade as a core part of its new development strategy. This strategy, which is currently being finalized by the government, will set out medium and long-term socio-economic development goals,   for the ...
UNECE announces the members of the Jury of the Ideas for change Award (12 February 2015)

The United Nations Economic Commission for Europe (UNECE) has introduced the members of the jury of the Ideas for Change Award. The jury, led by Christian Friis Bach, Executive Secretary of the UNECE, will be composed by: -Brigitte Baumann - Founder and CEO of Go Beyond Early Stage ...
UNECE to discuss first international regulatory steps concerning automated-driving (10 February 2015)

As self-driving cars slowly edge towards commercial reality, with companies such as Mercedes-Benz, Continental, Tesla, Denso, or Google getting in gear, regulatory action has already started at UNECE. Under the auspices of the World Forum for harmonization of vehicle regulations, the UNECE Working ...
Lebanon to consider joining UNECE Water Convention following Beirut workshop (10 February 2015)

Lebanon announced its interest in joining the United Nations Economic Commission for Europe (UNECE) Convention on the Protection and Use of Transboundary Watercourses and International Lakes (Water Convention) during a national workshop on the Convention, “Key aspects and opportunities for ...
UNECE releases set of indicators of gender equality (05 February 2015)

In recent years, the demand for statistical information on gender equality by the media, policymakers and the scientific world has grown considerably together with the rapid and substantial changes that have characterized the lifestyles of men and women in society. The need for better statistics to ...
Belarus joins the UNECE Agreement on global vehicle regulations (23 January 2015)

On 3 March 2015 Belarus will become a Contracting Party to the 1998 Agreement on Global Vehicle Regulations. The 1998 Agreement is the legal framework for the development of global technical regulations for vehicles and their components, with the aim of increasing their active and passive safety, ...
Europe’s slow recovery still fragile, warns UN report (19 January 2015)

, 19 January—Europe continues to recover moderately from the global financial crisis of 2008, but tensions in Ukraine and other risks could send Europe back into a recession, according to the United Nations World Economic Situation and Prospects 2015 (WESP) released today. Gross domestic product ...
Global economy to improve marginally, but mounting uncertainties and risks could undermine economic growth, says UN (19 January 2015)

New York, 19 January—Global economic growth is forecast to increase marginally over the next two years, according to the United Nations World Economic Situation and Prospects 2015 (WESP) report, launched today. The global economy is expected to grow 3.1 per cent in 2015 and 3.3 per cent in 2016, ...