The OSCE’s budget for 2016 was adopted at a special plenary meeting of the OSCE Permanent Council on 31 December 2015. The timely adoption of the budget just before the start of Germany’s chairmanship of the OSCE sends an important signal for the Organization’s ability to act in difficult times.
The budget is worth 141.1 million euros in total – exactly the same amount as in 2015. This is the first time in five years that the OSCE’s budget is not lower than in the previous year. Under Germany’s leadership, the budget negotiations have resulted in several positive developments.
Significant increase in financial support in some areas
For example, additional funding has been provided and three additional positions created in the Conflict Prevention Centre (CPC), which supports OSCE field missions and plays an important role in early warning, conflict prevention, conflict management and post-conflict peacebuilding. Almost all field missions have received the funding they requested, and financial support has been increased considerably for a large number of field missions, for example in Ukraine, Tajikistan and the Republic of Moldova. Despite calls for extensive budget cuts by some states, it also proved possible to maintain and in some cases even to slightly increase the budgets for the ODIHR, the OSCE High Commissioner on National Minorities and the OSCE Representative on Freedom of the Media. The institutions support the OSCE participating States in implementing human rights obligations.
“A good omen.”
On 31 December, the evening prior to assuming the Chairmanship of the OSCE, Foreign Minister Frank-Walter Steinmeier issued the following statement on the adoption of the OSCE budget for the year 2016:
I am most delighted that the OSCE budget for 2016 was adopted on time today. It was a tough nut to crack and required dogged negotiations in Vienna and with my fellow foreign ministers in the respective capital cities over a prolonged period, including during the Christmas break.
The fact that we have managed to get the budget for the coming year under lock and key today is also thanks to the willingness on the part of the OSCE partners to compromise and to reach out to each other when this is called for. The smooth running of the Organization is therefore now ensured.
This is a good omen. We can now devote our full energy to the business of day‑to‑day work right at the start of our OSCE Chairmanship.