Geneva: The UN refugee agency said on 24 April said it may move some 155 administrative and support jobs from its Swiss headquarters to Asia or eastern Europe to reduce costs.
Some 155 out of 900 positions in Geneva could be moved to a new centre towards the end of 2007, though no decision will be taken until May, the UN High Commissioner for Refugees said. India, Malaysia, Hungary and Romania were under consideration.
“The aim is to ensure that services are located where they are most efficient and cost-effective,” it said in a statement.
“UNHCR considers that it has a moral obligation to keep its administrative costs to a minimum and to devote as many of its resources as possible to its programmes of protection and assistance for refugees and other people of its concern.”
Possible new locations include Chennai, Kuala Lampur, Budapest and Bucharest, the agency said. Jobs slated to be moved fall under human resources, financial and supply mangement.
According to its Web site, the UNHCR has a staff of 6,689 working in 116 countries. About 84 percent work in the field.
With an annual budget of more than $1 billion, UNHCR assists nearly 21 million displaced people worldwide, with large operations in Chad, Afghanistan, Liberia and Kenya.