Pakistan has announced its candidature for a seat on the Economic and Social Council (ECOSOC), the economic arm of the United Nations, for the year 2015-2017.

The announcement, ahead of the 69th session of the General Assembly, was made by Pakistan U.N. Ambassador Masood Khan at a large gathering of diplomats and UN officials at the Pakistan Mission to the U.N. "If elected, Pakistan 's role will not be cosmetic, but substantive," he declared before his distinguished guests that included New Zealand's former Prime Minister James Bolger.

Pakistan is contesting an Asian seat, which is so far unchallenged. A two-third majority in the 193-member Assembly is required for election, and voting will take place next month. With its third consecutive term expiring on Dec. 2013, Pakistan is seeking election after a gap of one year. First elected in 1954, Pakistan served the ECOSOC in 1965-1967, 1969-1971, 1974-1977, 1979-1984, 1986-1988, 1990-1992, 1994-1995, 1998-2003, 2005-2007, 2008-10 and 2010-13.

Of the ECOSCO's 54 members, 18 retire each year. Seats have been distributed on geographical basis with 14 allocated to Africa, 11 to Asia, six to East Europe, 10 Latin America and 13 to Western Europe and other states.

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