(Geneva, 20 April 2015)

H.E. Ambassador Christopher Onyanga Aparr, Chair
Mr. Joakim Reiter, Deputy Secretary-General of UNCTAD,
Mr. James Zhan, Director of the Investment and Enterprise Division,
Ladies and Gentlemen,

1. At the outset allow me to express to you and the other members of your bureau our felicitations on your election. This 7th Session of the Investment, Enterprise, and Development Commission occurs at a crucial time. Just last week our colleagues in New York conducted the second drafting session on the zero draft outcome document for the Third International Conference on Financing for Development (FfD) that will be held in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia, in July 2015. Meanwhile negotiations on the Post-2015 Development Agenda are entering a crucial phase. The discussions of this commission on the three main themes will no doubt be highly relevant to the negotiations occurring outside of UNCTAD.

2. The Group of 77 and China emphasizes the importance of the three themes of this session, namely: 1) Mobilizing investment for development, contribution of UNCTAD in the context of financing for development, 2) Entrepreneurship and sustainable development goals, and 3) Policies to promote science, technology and innovation for development.

Mobilizing investment for development, contribution of UNCTAD in the context of financing for development

3. On the theme of Mobilizing investment for development, the Group of 77 and China recognizes that an enabling international environment should be created, in particular by developed countries, through relevant policy frameworks and incentives that should lead to, among others, increasing flows of finance and investment to developing countries, scaling up technology development and transfer, establishing a fair and pro-development international trading system, and enhancing participation of developing countries in global financial and economic governance.

4. In terms of the Third International Conference on FfD, the Group of 77 and China emphasizes that development requires generation of the necessary financing and provision of additional adequate predictable and sustainable means of implementation from developed to developing countries to further stimulate and sustain productive economic activity. More fundamental is the need to build, maintain, and expand the infrastructure required for development and enabling the evolution towards sustainable growth with equity.

5. The Group of 77 and China would like to commend UNCTAD for its timely World Investment Report 2014: Investing in the SDGs - An Action Plan. The Group endorses the central message of the report that achieving the SDGs will require a transformative agenda involving leadership, partnership, and vision. It will also require the mobilization of various sources of capital flows for development financing, including investment, export earnings, ODA, and fiscal revenues.

6. The Group underscores the importance of fulfilling previous commitments made, in particular the allocation of 0.7% of GNI to ODA and further stresses that developed countries show their political commitment to the Post-2015 development agenda by adopting a goal of reaching 1% of their GNI by 2025 or 2030. In this regard, the Group is concerned with the gap recorded between 2002 and 2012 in ODA flows that is estimated at nearly USD$2 trillion.

7. The Group of 77 and China emphasizes the importance of FDI and wishes to highlight that combined FDI flows to its Member States rose slightly by 4 percent in 2014, reaching more than USD$700 billion. This would be the highest level ever recorded for the Group, accounting for 56 percent of global FDI flows. The increase was mainly driven by strong performance in developing Asia, which is the world's largest FDI recipient. FDI inflows to Latin America are estimated to have decreased in 2014, after four years of consecutive growth. Meanwhile, FDI inflows to Africa fell by 3 percent to an estimated USD$55 billion. In this light, the Group stresses the essential nature of capacity building, financial support, and investments for developing countries, especially LDCs, LLDCs, and SIDS.

8. The Group of 77 and China welcomes UNCTAD's technical assistance in the area of FDI statistics, which are essential for effective investment policymaking and for other policy areas.

9. The Group of 77 and China believes that private investment in agriculture is necessary for growth and development in developing countries. It also provides important access to technology. FDI in agriculture can help alleviate poverty, generate exports and employment, and connect developing countries to markets through global value chains. However, it is important to take into account the legitimate concerns of countries and communities in terms of social, environmental and economic impact. The Group values the work of UNCTAD on investment in agriculture and commends its recent report on the topic, published in collaboration with the World Bank.

10. On Private Public Partnerships (PPPs), the Group believes that these should be subject to a thorough cost-benefit analysis. They should be carefully designed and implemented with the involvement of local stakeholders, under strict supervision and regulation, including transparent accounting, and full monitoring and evaluation.

11. In terms of remittances, the Group of 77 and China wishes to highlight the importance of lowering the cost of remittance transfers to less than 3 percent of the amount transferred.

12. On the issue of regional integration and connectivity, the Group recognizes the relationship between regional integration, connectivity, and sustainable development, which is an area that deserves deeper reflection. In this regard, the Group of 77 and China took note of the High-level Inter-regional Dialogue on Regional Integration and Investment held during the World Investment Forum 2014. Such a forum provides a useful platform for exchanging experiences and ideas among regions on issues of common and mutual interest.

13. In the area of investment policymaking, the Group welcomes UNCTAD's efforts to address the deficit in global governance in the area of international investment. We appreciate UNCTAD's pro-active approach in sketching a roadmap for the reform of the international investment agreement (IIA) regime, and UNCTAD's readiness to provide a multilateral platform for engagement on investment policy issues and to work with other stakeholders to build consensus on IIA reform. In this respect, the Group of 77 and China recognizes the important discussions held during the Expert Meeting on "The Transformation of the International Investment Agreement Regime" held in February 2015, in Geneva.

14. Additionally, we recognize UNCTAD's technical assistance to Group members to strengthen the capacity of negotiators and raise the awareness of policymakers on key issues in IIAs and investment dispute, such as the need to reform the system to make it more effective and equitable.

Entrepreneurship and sustainable development goals

15. The Group of 77 and China recognizes UNCTAD's work on entrepreneurship and its follow-up actions on the Entrepreneurship Policy Framework, both in assisting specific countries to design and implement national entrepreneurship strategies and for its assistance to targeted groups, such as youth and women. We also appreciate UNCTAD's promotion of entrepreneurship through its active participation in global initiatives, such as the Global Entrepreneurship Week and Congress. The Group also encourages UNCTAD to continue its technical assistance programs and to expand them further in other regions.

16. The Group of 77 and China calls upon UNCTAD to continue its assistance to developing countries and put in place dynamic and coherent policies for sustainable development through the promotion of investment and the development of a dynamic private sector. In particular, policy support should aim to strengthen the local absorptive capacity of developing countries, including in the SME sector, to better reap the benefits of foreign investment while, at the same time, helping to channel foreign investment towards sectors that contribute to sustainable development.

Policies to promote collaboration in science, technology, and innovation for development

17. The Group of 77 and China wishes to emphasize the importance of technology integration and transfer, innovation, and capacity building in relation to sustainable development.

18. The Group further highlights that intellectual property rights regimes have to be appropriate to the country's circumstances in order to make sure that they do not become a barrier to a country's achievement of technological and industrialization development objectives.

19. The Group recognizes the importance of science, technology, and innovation parks, which can be a means for technological innovation and consequently, development.

I thank you Mr/Madame Chair.