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Christine A. Jantscher, Head of the Austrian Cooperation Office in Bhutan and Christina Carlson, UN Resident Coordinator in Bhutan after signing the SAA for Multi-Donor Trust Funds on 30 July 2014
About

Overview

 

Bhutan adopted the “Delivering as One” (DaO) approach for enhancing UN coherence on a voluntary basis in 2008. The key instrument for the DaO approach is the United Nations Development Assistance Framework (UNDAF). It is the strategic document of the UN Country Team in its efforts to contribute more effectively to national development priorities and describes the collective response of the UN system to the priorities laid out in the Five Year Plans of the Royal Government of Bhutan.

The ongoing support of the UN System to Bhutan is described in the UNDAF: Bhutan One Programme 2014-2018, a single document that combines a strategic overview, an action plan and a common budgetary framework.  The aim is to ensure a continued focused, coordinated and effective support for national development goals, the MDGs and the post-2015 agenda. It is about a UN Bhutan that delivers more coherently and efficiently for the poorest and most disadvantaged. 

The UN Bhutan Country Fund (One Fund) is a common fund for mobilizing and allocating resources for UN activities at the country level. It serves as a vehicle for pooling and allocating resources to support outcomes of the Bhutan One Programme (2014-2018), and it supplements the internal funding of the UN agencies. The Fund enhances the flexibility and responsiveness of the UN system through the One Programme to address existing and emerging national priorities.

The UN Bhutan Country Fund is administered by the UNDP Multi-Partner Trust Fund Office (MPTF Office) in accordance with its financial regulations and rules.


Assistance Strategy

 

The One Programme sets out two levels of results expected from the UN and the Royal Government of Bhutan, Outcome level and Output level. At the Outcome level, the contribution is articulated in terms of specific development results that support national priorities. The results capture institutional and behavioural changes that ensue from the collective efforts of two or more UN agencies alongside actions of the Government and other partners. This is the level where the value added of the UN system as a whole is captured. 

The four outcomes outlined in the One Programme are:

  1. Sustainable Development: By 2018, sustainable and green economic growth that is equitable, inclusive, climate and disaster resilient and promotes poverty reduction, and employment opportunities particularly for vulnerable groups enhanced.
  2. Essential Social Services: By 2018, increased and equitable access, utilization and quality of inclusive essential social services for all with a focus on sustaining the MDGs and addressing emerging challenges
  3. Gender Equality and Child Protection: By 2018, communities and institutions strengthened at all levels to achieve enhanced gender equality, empowerment and protection of women and children
  4. Good Governance and Participation: By 2018, governance institutions and communities exercise the principles of democratic governance at the national and local levels with a focus on inclusiveness, transparency, accountability and evidence-based decision making.

To achieve these results, the UN agencies in all their activities will give priority to: 

  • Promotion of evidence-based policy making through supporting the national capacities for data collection and analysis, with particular emphasis on economic and social disadvantage;
  • Support to policy integration between national and local levels and across all sectors to promote a multi-sectoral approach, with a focus on the socially excluded groups;
  • Promotion of participatory approaches to ensure active engagement of all stakeholders in policy planning, implementation and monitoring; and
  • A strong focus on demand creation and behavioural change at the individual / community level.

The focus is on those areas of strategic transformational potential where the UN can, with its technical, human and financial resources, work with Government and other development partners in support of the progressive realisation of human rights. The UN system addresses the critical bottlenecks and barriers that exclude the poor and most vulnerable, promotes advocacy, raises awareness of good practices and social issues, influences policies and budgets, and strengthens national capacity of both duty bearers and rights holders. 

 

Governance

 

The One Programme is implemented and monitored under the overall supervision and guidance of a joint Government – United Nations Country Programme Board (CPB). The CPB is co-chaired by the Secretary of the Gross National Happiness Commission of the Royal Government of Bhutan and the UN Resident Coordinator. Board members comprise senior officials of key national implementing partners and UN Country Team members. Other One Programme partner agencies can be invited as and when required. The Board meets at least once a year, usually in the fourth quarter, to review overall progress against the signed annual work plans.

The Steering Committee

The Steering Committee is comprised of UN signatories to the UN Bhutan Country Fund and the Gross National Happiness (GNH) Commission, and is co-chaired by the Secretary of the GNH Commission and the UN Resident Coordinator. The Steering Committee is responsible for prioritization and allocation decisions of the un-earmarked contributions to the UN Bhutan Country Fund. The initial prioritization for allocation is guided by recommendations from the Joint Outcome Groups’ annual review process.

The Steering Committee guides the operations and management of the Fund; it annually reviews the joint resource mobilization strategy and subsequently implements it. The Steering Committee ensures that the Country Programme Board is informed of the allocations, and will take into consideration the Country Programme Board’s strategic priorities. 

Resident Coordinator

The overall management of the UN Bhutan Country Fund is led and coordinated by the Resident Coordinator in consensus with the Heads of the Participating UN Organizations. In line with the overall objective of “Delivering as One” in Bhutan, the Resident Coordinator is responsible for the strategic leadership of the UN Bhutan Country Fund on the basis of the One Programme.

The RC  also advocates and mobilizes resources for the UN Bhutan Country Fund in collaboration with Participating UN Organizations and leads a consultative process on allocations from the UN Bhutan Country Fund, and makes final decisions if consensus cannot be reached, with documented process and rationale for these decisions.

Whereas the implementation of the programme activities funded by the resources from the UN Bhutan Country Fund is the responsibility of the Participating UN Organizations, the RC will hold the Heads of Participating UN Organizations accountable for their Organization’s components of the results of initiatives funded through the UN Bhutan Country Fund.

The Administrative Agent

The UNDP Multi-Partner Trust Fund Office (MPTF Office) has been appointed as the Administrative Agent of the UN Bhutan Country Fund. Its responsibilities include the receipt, administration and management of contributions from Donors; disbursement of such funds to the Participating UN Organizations in accordance with the approved programmatic documents; and provision of consolidated narrative and financial reports, in accordance with the MOU, on the UN Bhutan Country Fund to donors, based on reports of the Participating UN Organizations.


Decision-Making Process

 

Drawing on the results reports, financial report and the funding gap, the Resident Coordinator’s Unit and the GNH Commission compile the suggested prioritized for funding allocation and submit the proposal to the Steering Committee for prioritization and allocation decisions.

Upon receipt of funds, the Steering Committee makes the allocation decisions for un-earmarked funds. Decisions are based on a consultative process and documented jointly by the Resident Coordinator’s Unit and the GNH Commission. The Bhutan One Programme serves as the basis for funding requests and allocations.

The criteria for allocation of un-earmarked resources include:

-      One Programme relevance

-      Resource gaps

-      Joint programmes implemented by two or more UN organizations

-      Agency comparative advantage

-      Priorities which would not otherwise be funded

-      Activities which support core UN development priorities identified by the Steering Committee and the Country Programme Board at the start of the annul programme cycle

-      Realistic outcome budget

Subsequent allocations will, in addition to the above, include the following:

-      Implementing partners and Participating UN Organizations’ absorption capacity 

-      Previous track record: (a) Results; (b) Expenditure rate and financial Management; and (c) Reporting – timeliness and quality of reporting.

Recent Documents

This tab shows only recent documents relevant at the Fund level. To see more documents at both the fund and project level go to the Document Center.

Key Figures
Funding Status
Participating Organizations are required to submit final year-end expenditures by April 30 in the following year; Interim expenditure figures are submitted on a voluntary basis and therefore current year figures are not final until the year-end expenditures have been submitted.
Total as of
Values in US$
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Funds with Administrative Agent
Deposits 3,576,120  
Interest and Investment Income (from Fund) + 4,885  
Interest (from Participating Organizations) + 5,078  
Total source of funds   3,586,083
Transferred to Participating Organizations 3,782,011  
Refunds from Participating Organizations - 290,025  
Administrative Agent Fee + 35,761  
Direct Cost + 57,709  
Bank Charges + 19  
Total use of funds   - 3,585,475
Balance with Administrative Agent   609
As a percentage of deposits   0.0%
Funds with Participating Organizations
Transferred to Participating Organizations 3,782,011  
Total resources   3,782,011
Participating Organizations' Expenditure 3,322,626  
Refunds from Participating Organizations + 290,025  
Total expenses   - 3,612,651
Balance with Participating Organizations   169,360
As a percentage of transfers   4.5%
Total Balance of Funds   169,969
As a percentage of deposits   4.8%
Delivery Analysis
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Contributions
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Projects
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Contacts

For Policy and Programme Issues

UN Resident Coordinator Office, UN House, P.O. Box 162, Thimphu, Bhutan
Tel: (975)-2-322424; Fax: (975)-2-32265; Website: www.unct.org.bt

 

For Administrative Agent Issues

Multi-Partner Trust Fund Office (MPTF Office), Bureau for Management Services, United Nations Development Programme; Fax: +1 212 906 6990;  

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