Secretary-General António Guterres today launched an initiative to boost efficiency of United Nations planes and flights, as it was revealed that the Organization spent close to $750 million from 2015 to 2016 on air assets in its peacekeeping and political missions.
“While these assets provide essential logistics and military enabling capabilities, given their significant cost implications, the Secretary-General has asked the heads of field missions to systematically analyze and adjust the composition and utilization of their air fleet and to seek alternative solutions that may be more cost-effective,” UN Spokesman Stéphane Dujarric told journalists in New York.
Immediate changes include reducing fleets, limiting passenger movement to essential needs and cutting the number of non-mission passengers traveling on UN flights, and reducing the number of special flights.
The UN currently deploys 58 fixed-wing and 157 rotary-wing aircraft in 12 peacekeeping missions and 6 special political missions, the Spokesperson said.
The effort to reduce costs is being led by the Department of Field Support, which provides logistical support to the Department of Peacekeeping and the Department of Political Affairs.
The policy change is part of the Secretariat’s “ongoing review of costs and the use of resources provided by Member States,” the Spokesperson added.