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Cash Crunch Forces UN To Cut Down Spending On Water Cooler, Escalators

BP World Bureau | Oct 12 2019 03:44:28 PM

The United Nations is facing the worst cash crisis in a decade. The organisation has announced a $1.4 billion shortfall in the budget this year. The funding gap is supposed to be due to late payment from around 60 states.

Secretary-General Antonio Guterres said that the UN is at risk of depleting its liquidity reserves by the end of the month.

The world body is cutting down small expenses like usage of escalators and water cooler to bridge the gap in the budget. The diplomat's bar will also be closing early at 5 pm. Guterres, in a letter to the staff, said that the cutbacks will affect flights, reception, hiring, documents, reports, and translations.

An official from the United Nations's management department Catherine Pollard said that the main priority at this point is the next paycheck of 37,000 employees.

Out of 60 countries, seven are responsible for 90% of the deficit. These nations are the United States, Brazil, Argentina, Iran, Israel, and Venezuela. The United States owes a billion dollars to the UN. France owes USD 103 million in peacekeeping operations and the US owes USD 2.3 billion.

The UN hopes that the US will be releasing funds by the end of 2019 as the fiscal year of the US starts from October 1 to September 30. The UN runs according to the calendar year.