UN-OHRLLS/45/2006

PRESS RELEASE

OFFICE OF THE HIGH REPRESENTATIVE FOR THE LEAST DEVELOPED COUNTRIES, LANDLOCKED DEVELOPING COUNTRIES AND SMALL ISLAND DEVELOPING STATES

South-South cooperation should focus on the poor - High Representative

Shanghai, 17 October 2006: The UN envoy for vulnerable countries has welcomed a proposed forum of policy makers and opinion leaders from the South as a potentially powerful tool for turning South-South Cooperation into tangible benefits for the poor.

Mr. Anwarul K. Chowdhury, the High Representative for Least Developed Countries, Landlocked Developing Countries and Small Island Developing States, was addressing an Advisory Group meeting on the proposed new institutional structure for South-South Cooperation.

The proposed structure will comprise Global South Development Forum (GSDF) and the Southern Leaders’ Round Table (SLRT). The GSDF will provide a platform for leading political, business, civil society, academic, media and other actors to share policy and strategic options for the socio-economic development of the South. The smaller SLRT will provide a long-term vision and broad policy guidance to the GSDF.

The meeting was organized by the Special Unit for South-South Cooperation, which is hosted by the United Nations Development Programme.

Mr. Chowdhury said that the proposed structure “has the potential of not only helping countries of the South navigate their way through the maze of the complex and increasingly globalizing economy, but also playing their rightful role in shaping that process for their benefit. It would also serve as an important tool for forging, consolidating and advancing partnerships at various levels for the development of the South.”

He added that the structure would serve as a model of inclusive multilateralism for the international community as a whole.

Mr. Chowdhury highlighted the growing importance of South-South Cooperation and emphasized the need for it to focus on achieving the Millennium Development Goals in the most vulnerable countries.

“For developing countries, especially the most vulnerable ones, South-South cooperation is not just an option, but a must for their development. It is therefore important that appropriate structures are put in place to transform the vision of a prosperous global South into reality,” he said, adding that the realization of the proposed Global South Development Forum and the Southern Leaders’ Round Table would be a major milestone in this process.

Click her for the full statement.


For further information, please contact: Fred Kirungi, Advocacy and Outreach Officer, United Nations Office of the High Representative for the Least Developed Countries, Landlocked Developing Countries and Small Island Developing States. Tel: 1-917-367-3431.