STATEMENT ON BEHALF OF GROUP OF 77 AND CHINA BY H.E. DR. RIAD MALKI, MINISTER OF FOREIGN AFFAIRS OF THE STATE OF PALESTINE, AT THE SOUTH-SOUTH COOPERATION SIDE EVENT (New York, 26 September 2019)
Excellencies, ladies and gentlemen,
1. I have the honor to deliver this statement on behalf of the Group of 77 and China.
2. At the outset, allow me to extend our appreciation to the Government of Argentina and the United Nations Office for South-South Cooperation for organizing this important side event.
3. The Group reiterates that South-South cooperation has evolved significantly over the decades, and the South-South roadmap has never been as important as it is today. The Group notes with appreciation the expansion of intra and interregional South-South cooperation initiatives and summits that have set strategies and agendas, enhanced policy coordination and launched joint ventures that have strengthened South-South trade, investment, infrastructure development and capacity development. The international community is also well aware of the scale and impact of South-South cooperation as the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development and the Addis Ababa Action Agenda both welcome the increased contribution of South-South cooperation to sustainable development and the overarching goal of eradication of poverty in all its forms and dimensions.
4. The Group welcomes the convening of the Second High-Level UN Conference on South-South Cooperation as well as its outcome document, and we look forward to its effective implementation, building on the Buenos Aires Plan of Action and the Nairobi outcome document.
5. In this connection, the Group recognizes the BAPA+40 conference, and its final outcome document, as an opportunity to redouble our firm commitment to the mandate of the High-Level Committee on South-South Cooperation and to reiterate our support to the United Nations Office for South-South Cooperation, stressing that the Office provides important support to South-South cooperation in the UN system.
6. The Group reiterates that South-South cooperation is a complement to, and not a substitute for North-South cooperation, which remains the main channel for development cooperation, and stresses that South-South Cooperation and its agenda must be set by countries of the South and should continue to be guided by the principles of respect for national sovereignty, national ownership and independence, equality, non-conditionality, non-interference in domestic affairs and mutual benefit. South-South cooperation and its spread shall not reduce the commitment of developed countries to reach 0,7% of their GNIs, as their official developing assistance to developing countries.
7. The Group reiterates that South-South cooperation is built on voluntary and demand-driven nature, lower transaction cost with no conditionality, taking advantage of the similarities and relevant know-how among developing countries, real and proven development expertise valued by the southern countries. Furthermore, South-South Cooperation cannot be measured or assessed in the same way as ODA, as its value goes beyond direct and indirect costs.
8. The Group recognizes the multidimensional nature of poverty and economic, social, and environmental dimensions of domestic output and structural gaps at all levels, and further recognizes the need for international development cooperation to include a multidimensional perspective that transcends the use of per capita income as the sole indicator to measure development, in order to support all developing countries to achieve sustainable development.
9. In closing, the Group calls upon the United Nations development system to continue enhancing its support to South-South and triangular cooperation, at the request and with the ownership and leadership of the developing countries. The international community must foster and strengthen initiatives, commitments, ambitions, and objectives generated during BAPA+40 while contributing to the role played by South-South Cooperation in supporting all developing countries to achieve sustainable development, while acknowledging the serious and continuous, as well as the new and emerging challenges, that developing countries face.
10. The G77 and China fervently hopes that BAPA+40 will constitute itself in a multilateral consensus that will allow to boost the volume, reach and quality of our South-South and Triangular cooperation initiative and guide our joint work for the next years.
I thank you.