United Nations & Global Governance

The United Nations remains an indispensable framework for bringing states together to resolve conflicts and find solutions in an increasingly interdependent world.


Canada was a founding member and should remain a strong advocate of the UN’s role in enhancing global peace, prosperity, inclusion, equality, justice, freedom and human rights.


The reality remains that UN agencies, funds, programmes and missions deliver uneven results; are often subject to bias, distortion, mismanagement or even subversion due to a lack of accountability or interference by member states; and only rarely succeed in forging real bonds of reporting and accountability with the citizens of the states which fund them.


In 2016-17, the regular budget for the United Nations was under US $6 billion[1] – significantly less than the preliminary operating budget of the City of Toronto.[2]  Any major increase in United Nations authority should be tied to long-awaited reforms and improvements in accountability.


Canada’s core objectives at the UN should remain “to save succeeding generations from the scourge of war” which has brought “untold sorrow”; to uphold and apply the principles of the UN Charter, the Universal Declaration of Human Rights and international law; and to achieve greater reform and accountability.


With global development blocked in many countries by rampant corruption, crime, conflict and cronyism, Canada should also advocate a growing UN role in promoting and monitoring the rule of law, governance, democracy and accountability.


As Leader of the Conservative Party and Prime Minister of Canada, I would:


(i)             use the United Nations as a platform to promote three priorities: sanctions against state sponsors of terrorism and armed insurgency; enhanced protection of wilderness, wildlife and water, including fish stocks and marine ecosystems; and a new growth partnership for inclusion and equality;


(ii)           for the third priority, champion at the G20, G7 and World Economic Forum a new permanent partnership of the UN, WTO, World Bank, IMF, OECD, regional development banks and other international organizations, as required, to deliver peer-reviewed advice to all states, industries and publics on how to ensure inclusion and equality in a new era of growth, trade and investment, including by developing new international standards for education, learning and skills; rule-based and irregular migration; business environment and taxation; rule of law and governance;


(iii)          advocate an enhanced UN role in promoting accountability, democracy, good governance and the rule of law;


(iv)          make it a priority to support a substantive UN reform agenda, including mitigation of existing P5 veto privileges;


(v)           launch discussion of a voluntary United Nations Parliament, with responsibility for independent oversight of UN operations and finances and elected representation from all states that meet basic democratic standards; and


(vi)          offer to host a major UN University in Canada specializing in global economic governance, rule of law, international public service, conflict management and conflict resolution, human rights and accountability.


[1] http://www.un.org/en/ga/fifth/70/ppb1617sg.shtml. UN extrabudgetary spending in 2016-17, mostly for peacekeeping operations, was projected to be just under US 19 billion.

[2] http://www.toronto.ca/legdocs/mmis/2016/bu/bgrd/backgroundfile-98984.pdf


Alexandra Day