The United Nations is running a deficit of $230 million, Secretary General Antonio Guterres said on Monday, and may run out of money by the end of October.
In a letter intended for the 37,000 employees at the UN secretariat, Guterres said unspecified “additional stop-gap measures” would have to be taken to ensure salaries and entitlements are paid.
To cut costs, Guterres mentioned postponing conferences and meetings and reducing services, while also restricting official travel to only essential activities and taking measures to save energy.
Guterres had asked member states earlier this year to up contributions to the world body to head off cash flow problems, but they refused, a UN official said on condition of anonymity.
“The ultimate responsibility for our financial health lies with Member States,” Guterres said.
Not including what it pays for peacekeeping operations, the UN’s operating budget for 2018-2019 is close to $5.4 billion, with the United States contributing 22 per cent.