South-South Cooperation Complements North-South Coaction

By Ambassador Galo Yepez

Ambassador Galo Yepez is Director of NGOs, Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Human Mobility of the Republic of Ecuador. Following are extensive excerpts from his statement on behalf of the Group of 77 and China at the High-Level Opening Ceremony of the Global South-South Development (GSSD) Expo 2017 on 27 November in Antalya, Turkey. Read our report on the Expo. – The Editor.

UNITED NATIONS (IDN) – The Global South-South Development (GSSD) Expo this year highlights the South-South Cooperation in the Era of Economic, Social and Environmental Transformation. In this regard I have to emphasize that South-South cooperation is a manifestation of solidarity among peoples and countries of the South that contributes to their national well-being, national and collective self-reliance and the attainment of the 2030 Agenda.

We strongly believe that importance of South-South and Triangular Cooperation must be recognized but at the same time must not be overemphasized considering its role as a complement to but not a substitute of North-South Cooperation. We would like to stress the need to urgently address the unmet Official Development Assistance (ODA) – in accordance with the historical commitments of developed countries – taking into account that it is still the main channel of financing development for developing countries.

South-South cooperation has been taking place in a wide range of areas, in support of development processes in all their dimensions, including eradicating poverty and ending hunger, addressing effects of climate change, reinforcing infrastructure and humanitarian assistance. It is recognized the efforts made by the South through different and innovative ways and methods to the consecution of development projects, such as technical cooperation based on knowledge exchange with the ultimate goal of expanding capacities through mobilization of experts, field missions, technical outputs, and training, as well as financing and new resources granted among developing countries.

Furthermore, we would like to highlight the role of new regional banks of developing countries which are designed to operate within and across regions under the belief that a revitalized partnership among Southern countries is possible.

The Second UN High-level Conference on South-South Cooperation, to be held in 2019, in Buenos Aires, represents a key milestone in the evolution of South-South Cooperation, when developing countries will yet once again celebrate the fortieth anniversary of the adoption of the Buenos Aires Plan of Action for Promoting and Implementing Technical Cooperation Among Developing Countries, the very basis of the Nairobi outcome document of the High-level United Nations Conference on South-South Cooperation which defined the underlying principles of South-South Cooperation.

The Buenos Aires Conference will provide a unique opportunity to review lessons learned over the past four decades, reach a deeper understanding of Buenos Aires Plan of Action’s message in a different international context, create new commitments, and work together in an integrated manner to create a suitable and inclusive environment, promoting multilateralism, regional integration and collective pursuit of sustainable development.

In this context, we believe this present meeting can be a platform to review how South-South and triangular cooperation evolved in the past decades and what are the challenges ahead of us. The GSSD has proven to contribute immensely to networking among developing countries to addressing common development challenges by bringing together result-based solutions and evidence-based initiatives along with various stakeholders during the course of the past four days. A fruitful discussion during this meeting will prepare us for the upcoming negotiations and enable us to consolidate existing mechanisms and enhance the current institutional arrangements to better support South-South cooperation and promote the South-South agenda.

The Group is of the view that this forum is an opportune meeting that allow us to maximize the potentiality of South-South Cooperation as we move towards a roadmap for Buenos Aires Plan of Action + 40, while moving along with the critically important Nairobi Outcome document principles. [IDN-InDepthNews – 13 December 2017]

Photo: Ambassador Galo Yepez, Director of NGOs, Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Human Mobility of the Republic of Ecuador, addressing on behalf of the Group of 77 and China the High-Level Opening Ceremony of the Global South-South Development (GSSD) Expo 2017 on 27 November in Antalya, Turkey. Credit: UNOSSC

IDN is the flagship agency of International Press Syndicate. –

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