United Nations, Specialized Agencies of the

The following article is from The Great Soviet Encyclopedia (1979). It might be outdated or ideologically biased.

United Nations, Specialized Agencies of the


major international organizations dealing with economic, social, and humanitarian problems, founded by international treaty and linked with the United Nations by international agreements.

Articles 57, 58, 59, and 63 of the UN Charter and separate agreements between the UN and the specialized agencies provide for UN representation in the agencies and agency representation in the UN, the exchange of information and documentation, and the presentation of annual reports and budget data to the UN. The General Assembly and the Economic and Social Council have the right to make recommendations with respect to coordination of the policies and activities of the specialized agencies.

The specialized agencies of the United Nations are independent organizations (seeINTERNATIONAL ORGANIZATIONS). They, with their officials, have privileges and immunities of a functional character, that is, privileges and immunities emanating directly from their functions as defined in their basic instruments. They have broad competence and wide-ranging international rights and duties. Current international law regards them as a special juridical person in international law.

The specialized agencies of the United Nations work primarily in certain defined areas. They frame and adopt the texts of multilateral conventions, international technical regulations, standards, and rules on questions falling within their competence, doing so in order to create uniform standards in specialized areas of international cooperation, such as communications, postal services, health, meteorology, and culture. They coordinate the various countries’ activities in these areas. They also give technical and economic aid to the developing countries and compile and exchange information.

On Jan. 1, 1977, the United Nations had 14 specialized agencies. The USSR was a member of the Universal Postal Union, the International Telecommunication Union, the World Meteorological Organization, the International Labor Organization, the World Health Organization, the United Nations Educational, Scientific, and Cultural Organization, the International Civil Aviation Organization, and the Inter-governmental Maritime Consultative Organization. The other agencies are the International Bank for Reconstruction and Development, the International Monetary Fund, the International Finance Corporation, the International Development Association, the United Nations Food and Agricultural Organization, and the International Organization of Intellectual Property.


Shibaeva, E. A. Spetsializirovannye uchrezhdeniia OON. Moscow, 1966.
The Great Soviet Encyclopedia, 3rd Edition (1970-1979). © 2010 The Gale Group, Inc. All rights reserved.
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