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Opinion Africaine


22 Septembre 2010 , Rédigé par APPA Publié dans #Organisations internationales.





Original: English




Global financial crisis required adjustments to UNCTAD’s work, he says, including analysis of recession and increased concern

for Millennium Goals


Geneva, 22 September 2010 – The Accra Accord, the major document guiding UNCTAD’s work that was adopted two years ago in Accra, Ghana, at the UNCTAD XII quadrennial conference, is being implemented effectively by the organization and has proved “flexible” enough to accommodate major unforeseen events such as the global recession, Secretary-General Supachai Panitchpakdi said this morning.


He spoke before the 57th session of UNCTAD’s Trade and Development Board (TDB) at the beginning of several days’ review at the halfway point of the Accord’s four-year lifespan.


“UNCTAD always has been, and must continue to remain, ahead of the curve when economic events change,” Mr. Supachai told the Board.  “Fortunately, the Accra Accord is not only coherent but also comprehensive enough to allow the necessary adjustments in emphasis and focus.  That is why, for example, since Accra , the global economic crisis and its implications for trade and development have featured prominently in UNCTAD’s work.  We were quick to provide an analysis of the economic crisis and pro-active in our engagement with processes at the multilateral level.”


At the time the Accord was adopted, he noted, “the world was on a positive economic trend with high commodity prices and growth rates above 5%-to-6% in most developing countries.”  He added, “Few were aware of the imminent global collapse.”


The Secretary-General said the organization is giving increased attention to matters in the Accord that have been stressed by member States, including dedicating more budgetary resources to work on Africa; filling staff posts in a timely fashion, in particular finding a chief for the commodities unit; and translating publications and website pages to improve communications and outreach.


Some innovations in the Accord have meanwhile proved very successful, he said.  For example, one-day executive sessions of the TDB have been well received by member countries and will continue.  The Secretary-General added that expanding the organization’s activities requires funding, and he was encouraged by the emergence of new donors, even during a time of economic crisis.  Among other things, donors have financed the participation in UNCTAD meetings and other activities of experts from developing countries who could not otherwise afford to attend.


UNCTAD will continue to implement the Accra Accord over its remaining two years while also taking into consideration the changing economic climate, Mr. Supachai said.  Among issues of mounting concern that fit within the spirit of the document is the matter of the effect of the global crisis on the ability of developing countries, and especially least developed countries, to meet the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) by the target date of 2015.  Efforts to achieve the goals, which include halving extreme poverty, have needed an international rethinking, he said, and UNCTAD is playing a major role in the process.


Mr. Supachai said he had just returned from New York , where he had addressed the opening meeting of a summit on the MDGs staged at the start of the UN General Assembly session.  He told the meeting that UNCTAD’s research indicates that several policy changes and actions are urgently needed: there should be a larger role for fiscal policy in the development process, as poverty reduction requires solid, broadbased economic growth to be sustainable; policies should be targeted at relevant economic sectors so that the poor are helped effectively; private domestic resources must be mobilized to a greater degree to help supply the long-term investment needed for improving the productive abilities of national economies; the system of global economic governance should be reexamined, including the international architecture for aid, trade, and debt; and more attention should be paid to economic inequality, which is increasing and has a major negative effect on poverty.


The TDB’s 57th session continues through 28 September.




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