Australia pursues important national interests in the UN system. The principal body, the General Assembly and its committees, is complemented by specialised agencies like the World Health Organization, and affiliated organisations, such as the International Atomic Energy Agency. Under the UN Charter the Security Council has primary responsibility for maintaining international peace and security.
Australia places high priority on the UN's efforts to promote multilateral cooperation in core areas: international peace and security; the development of international legal instruments and norms; the provision of humanitarian assistance; and protection of the environment and sustainable development. Priorities over the past year have included establishment of an International Criminal Court and strengthening multilateral cooperation on people smuggling and anti-terrorism.
Reform of the UN is an important objective for Australia. Our aim is to ensure that the UN system can respond effectively to changing circumstances in a stable or declining budgetary environment.