REMARKS ON BEHALF OF THE GROUP OF 77 AND CHINA BY MS. SHEYAM ELGARF, FIRST SECRETARY OF THE PERMANENT MISSION OF EGYPT TO THE UNITED NATIONS, AT THE UNDP EXECUTIVE BOARD BRIEFING ON THE UN OFFICE FOR SOUTH-SOUTH COOPERATION STRATEGIC FRAMEWORK 2018-2021 (New York, 22 March 2018)
1- I have the honor to deliver these remarks on behalf of the Group of 77 and China.
2- The Group of 77 and China would like to express once again its appreciation for the efforts and work of the UN Office for South-South Cooperation (UNOSSC) in developing the draft Strategic Framework as well as express our support to the important role of the UNOSCC in advancing and coordinating the South - South cooperation activities across the UN system.
3- In this regard, we would like to raise the following points:
- Structuring the draft Strategic Framework of 2018-2021 in the format and cluster similar to the UNOSSC Strategic Framework of 2014 - 2017, divided into sections including situation analysis, annexes, and resources.
- Reiterating the Principles of South - South Cooperation as stipulated in the Nairobi outcome document, and General Assembly resolutions, as reflected in para. 1) of the Strategic Framework of 2014-2017.
- Reiterating the mandate of the UNOSSC in accordance with General Assembly resolutions.
- The draft Strategic Framework has to be focused on the South-South cooperation as mandated by General Assembly resolutions in accordance with the Nairobi outcome, references to triangular cooperation to be reflected where appropriate.
- The UNOSSC draft Strategic Frameworks should maintain its focus on developmental issues. It is worth mentioning that the particular interest of the developing countries is gaining the support to enable them to gain more access and knowledge of other countries of the South and identify potential Southern Partners, in areas such as industry, trade and investment, knowledge and technology transfer, economic growth and employment, environment and natural resources management. Eradication of poverty in all its forms and dimensions should be the overarching goal of the UNOSSC strategic framework, as it is an indispensable requirement for sustainable development.
- The Group would like to express its preference to avoid thematic listing in (para 37/output 1.2/ output 2.1/ output 3.2/ 49/ output 2.2/ 2.3). The Group is of the view that the draft Strategic Framework should respond strictly to mandates from resolutions. As such, the Group requests further clarification on the sources and rationale for choosing the themes of demand-driven programme and reports.
- The Group reiterates its strong conviction that the UNOSSC is a development focused. Therefore, activities related to "Peace building" and, "preventive diplomacy" should be in full compliance with the Operative para 24 of the QCPR, with the view to avoid duplication of mandates and, activities already undertaken by existing UN organs or agencies.
- Since the adoption of the last Strategic Framework 2014-2017 there have been increased efforts and numerous initiatives undertaken by developing countries at the regional, sub-regional and inter-regional levels. In this context, we would expect the draft Strategic Framework to acknowledge these initiatives to be fully captured and reflected following the format of the Nairobi outcome document, and for the UNOSSC to provide its support for these efforts and initiatives.
- The Group underscores that the funds managed by the UNOSSC are governed by specific modalities, and terms of reference. In this context, the provision of policy guidance by the UNOSSC to the G77 PGTF, and the share of the non-core resources to those funds should fully respect these specific modalities, and terms of reference of each fund. The Group underlines that directions for managing as well as providing guidance to those funds should come from member states.
- The Group would like to seek further clarification on the UNOSSC strategy for providing secretariat support for the convening of three important meetings in 2019, namely the UN High Level Committee on South-South Cooperation, the 20th session of the UN High Level Committee and the Third South Summit; in particular ensuring the availability of sufficient support and resources.
- The above-mentioned comments and inputs are meant to complement the initial remarks of the G77 on the UNSSC draft Strategic Framework, as delivered and shared with the UNDP Executive Board and the UNOSSC during the briefing meeting on the 16th of March 2018 on the said draft Strategic Framework 2018-2021. The Group of 77 and China intends to provide further inputs to the draft Strategic Framework.