How could a Parliamentary Assembly at the United Nations be financed?

The United Nations and its various programmes and agencies are funded by combinations of assessed and/or voluntary contributions. If established as a subsidiary body of the UN General Assembly, a Parliamentary Assembly would likely be funded through the assessed UN regular budget. The budget would have to be expanded accordingly. However, other means of funding, including voluntary contributions by member states, should also be considered. In addition, a voluntary trust fund could be established and authorized to accept contributions from other political supporters under clearly defined terms.

What would a Parliamentary Assembly at the United Nations cost?

The possible costs of a Parliamentary Assembly depend on many variables that would have to be determined. This includes, for example, the number of delegates, salaries of delegates and their possible staff, the size of the administration, the frequency, length and the meeting venues of the plenary sessions, the committees and the sub-committees and the extent of translation services. The budgets of existing international parliamentary institutions (IPIs) are examples for what may be required depending on a given scenario.

Where would the sessions of a Parliamentary Assembly take place?

Plenary sessions and meetings of an Assembly’s committees could take place at its headquarters or alternately in different regions around the world. Internationally changing meeting venues in any case should be intended for the specialized committees and officials could also make fact-finding visits. This would contribute to bringing the work of the assembly closer to the world’s regions and peoples.

When, how often and for how long would a Parliamentary Assembly be in session?

As with all parliaments, one needs to keep in mind the distinction between the plenary sessions of all delegates, and sessions of specialized committees and their sub-committes that only committee members would attend. Initially, plenary assemblies could take place once per year or every two years for a few weeks, for example parallel to the general debate of the UN General Assembly. The plenary sessions of the assembly would be prepared in the committees that could hold meetings more frequently and more flexibly. Over time, an assembly itself would determine the most effective timing and duration of its sessions.

Where would the headquarters and the administrative seat of a Parliamentary Assembly be located?

Where a Parliamentary Assembly will have its headquarters would be decided during intergovernmental negotiations on its establishment and may depend on whether governments will be ready to provide suitable premises as a host country. It would be practical to choose a location where UN administrative offices are based, such as New York or Geneva. If a government offers an alternate suitable location, this could serve as an important incentive to locate the assembly elsewhere.