Third Meeting of Trade Ministers of Landlocked Developing Countries
21-22 October 2009
The Third Meeting of Trade Ministers of Landlocked Developing Countries took place at a time of an unprecedented economic crisis, which has spared no region or country. All major developed countries have gone through a period of severe recession, and economic growth of the most dynamic developing countries has slowed significantly. Even countries that are marginalized in the international economy, such as most LLDCs, are not de-linked from global events. It is certainly true that the combined shares of these countries in global trade and FDI flows are very low. But their marginalization in the world economy is associated with high levels of trade integration and high levels of dependence on external financial flows, particularly aid, FDI and remittances, which accelerated the transmission of the crisis effects to LLDCs.
It is against this background that the Third Meeting of Trade Ministers of Landlocked Developing Countries was convened under the theme "Strengthening Trade Competitiveness in times of global economic crisis – Challenges faced by LLDCs". Trade ministers and senior government officials from LLDCs gathered to take stock of the achievements reached since the Ministerial Meeting in Ulaanbaatar in 2007 and discuss policies and measures on how to tackle best the challenges facing LLDCs in their efforts to reap more benefits from international trade. They adopted the Ezulwini Declaration at the end of two days of intense, interactive discussions. Some of the statements and presentations are made available below.
·Mr. Cheick Sidi Diarra, UN Under-Secretary-General and High Representative for the Least Developed Countries, Landlocked Developed Countries, and Small Island Developing States (delivered by Mr. S. Erdenebileg, Chief, Policy Development, Coordination, Monitoring and Reporting Service, UN-OHRLLS)
·Ms. Jo Butler, Deputy Director, UNCTAD Africa, LDCs, LLDCs and Special Programmes Division
Session 1: The impact of the global economic crisis on the economies of LLDCs
Keynote Speech by Mr. Cheick Sidi Diarra, Under-Secretary-General and High Representative for the LDCs, LDCs and SIDS (delivered by Mr. S. Erdenebileg)
Session 2: Policies and measures to improve the trade efficiency of LLDCs