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G E N E R A L      S E C R E T A R I A T



   I.          DECISION: 

By decision of the Secretary General, the following policy guidelines are established for authorizing disbursements away from headquarters. They apply to all financial accounts of the General Secretariat, which include the Regular Fund, the Specific Funds, and the Trust Funds. 

A.  Obligating Funds 

1.      It is the policy of the General Secretariat that funds must be obligated in the ("GS/OAS") Oracle financial system before commitments are formalized with third parties away from headquarters. 

2.      Funds must be pre-obligated in the system through a Requisition in the GS/OAS Oracle Purchasing Module by the Dependencies of the GS/OAS. For planning purposes, it is suggested that Requisitions be prepared to reserve funds at a global level for the activities of a project that will take place away from headquarters. 

3.      When the purchase of goods and services away from headquarters is defined, Requisitions with global pre-obligations may be cancelled and in their place Requisitions made to real suppliers or general suppliers can be created, pre-obligated, and approved by the Program Manager. 

4.      From the approved requisition, the Office of Procurement Management Services ("OPMS") will create and approve a Purchase Order obligating funds of the General Secretariat. The Purchase Order will become the authorizing document for disbursements away from headquarters. 

5.      United States dollars should be the currency used in all Requisitions and Purchase Orders. 

B.        Suppliers away form Headquarters

1.      Requisitions for the purchase of goods and services away from headquarters should be made to specific known suppliers.  However, if the supplier is not known, a Dependency of the GS/OAS may prepare requisitions made to the following general suppliers: 

a.       Workshops/Seminars

b.      Local/Regional Travel

c.       Equipment

d.      Conferences

e.       Local Contracts

f.        Operating expenses 

2.      Approved Purchase Orders made to general suppliers will expire and be cancelled automatically after three (3) months of their approval date or at the end of the fiscal year, whichever comes first. General suppliers are for the exclusive use of the Offices Away from Headquarters. 

3.      Both unexpended and partially expended Purchase Orders made to general suppliers will be cancelled automatically at their expiration date. During the course of the fiscal year, the Dependencies of the GS/OAS may create new Requisition(s) to replace Purchase Orders that have been cancelled. However, at the year-end, requisitions that are cancelled may not be replaced. 

4.      Separate Requisitions lines and sites should be created for authorizations to be sent to different GS/OAS Offices Away from Headquarters even if they are using the same general supplier and belong to the same project. 

C.       Administrative Procedures

1.      The Department of Financial Services ("DFS") will transmit electronically approved Purchase Orders to GS/OAS Offices Away from Headquarters. However, in accordance with the policy of decentralization of the authority and responsibility to record obligations for goods and services[1], DFS may delegate to the Dependencies of the GS/OAS the function of electronically transmitting the approved Purchase Orders. 

2.      All Purchase Orders made for the GS/OAS Offices Away from Headquarters will bear an electronic stamp indicating that the originating Dependency of GS/OAS will certify the receipts of goods and services and will notify the GS/OAS Offices Away from Headquarters prior to the disbursements of funds. 

3.      After disbursing funds, the GS/OAS Offices Away from Headquarters will remit to DFS expenditure information for matching the Purchase Order in the system and submit copies of the checks bearing their Purchase Order numbers with supporting documentation for review. 

4.      If a Purchase Order has to be cancelled, the requesting Dependency of the GS/OAS should send an e-mail to OPMS requesting the cancellation of the Purchase Order. Copy should be forwarded to DFS requesting notification of the cancellation to the GS/OAS Office Away from Headquarters. 

 II.        RECISSIONS:  

By way of this administrative memorandum, all administrative memoranda, instructions, and practices of the General Secretariat that run counter to these provisions are hereby rescinded. 


This administrative memorandum shall enter into force on the date of its signature.


James R. Harding

                                                             Assistant Secretary for Management  


Date: September 01, 2000  
Original: English





[1] Administrative Memorandum No.84 Rev.1