Washington, D.C. (July 1, 2021) — Peter Yeo, President of the Better World Campaign, released the following statement regarding the “United States Commitment to Peacekeeping Act of 2021,” which enables the U.S. to pay its UN Peacekeeping dues in full:
“This bill aligns America’s words and actions by removing a legislative obstacle that prevents the U.S. from meeting its UN obligations. The measure is well timed, as the Biden Administration re-establishes U.S. leadership on the global stage amid new geopolitical challenges.
“Sponsored by Representative Sara Jacobs, with co-leads Representatives Joaquin Castro, David Cicilline, and Karen Bass, the bill lifts an artificial 25 percent ‘cap’ imposed on U.S. dues to the UN Peacekeeping budget. This cap currently prevents the U.S. from paying at the 27.8 percent rate previously agreed upon by our country in 2018.
“In fact, every three years the United States has voted in support of the assessment rates negotiated at the UN and then refused to pay what we agreed to. In some years, the U.S. passed a one year waiver to allow us to pay at the full amount but for a number of years we did not, causing massive arrears to accrue.
“As it stands, the current shortfall amounts to over $1 billion, resulting in operational and financial hardships for the UN and for countries that contribute peacekeeping troops, who are not fully reimbursed. This cycle and the damage in U.S. credibility it causes must come to an end.
“The legislation’s sponsor, Rep. Jacobs, has had valuable, first-hand experience working within the UN’s Department of Peacekeeping Operations, as well as with the U.S. Department of State focusing on peace and conflict resolution issues. She has seen how UN Peacekeeping has been successful in saving lives and shortening conflicts in some of the world’s most troubled areas, extending U.S. national security interests in a cost-effective manner. She also understands, as do her fellow co-leads, that any efforts at reforming and strengthening the UN will be better served by paying what we agreed to, and then mobilizing allies to advance our collective interests.
“The cap has been lifted more than a dozen times in the last 25 years, during both Republican and Democratic administrations, but one-year fixes have not solved the underlying problem. The need for a permanent fix is clear, as is the need for the U.S. to honor its obligations.
“Ours is a great nation, and great nations pay their dues.”
About the Better World Campaign
The Better World Campaign, an initiative of the Better World Fund, works to strengthen the relationship between the United States and the United Nations. It encourages U.S. leadership to enhance the UN’s ability to carry out its invaluable international work on behalf of peace, progress, freedom, and justice. For more information, visit www.betterworldcampaign.org.