STATEMENT ON BEHALF OF THE GROUP OF 77 AND CHINA BY MR. UMER SIDDIQUE, COUNSELOR, PERMANENT MISSION OF PAKISTAN TO THE UNITED NATIONS, AT THE 2022 ECOSOC OPERATIONAL ACTIVITIES FOR DEVELOPMENT SEGMENT - INTERACTIVE DIALOGUE WITH THE SECRETARY GENERAL (New York, 17 May 2022)
Mr. Secretary General,
Madam Vice President,
1. I have the honour to speak on behalf of the Group of 77 and China.
2. We thank you, Mr. Secretary-General, for the comprehensive Report on the 'Implementation of General Assembly resolution 75/233 on the QCPR' along with its related documents.
3. We thank as well the Deputy Secretary-General and her team, the Development Coordination Office and the Department of Economic and Social Affairs.
4. We wish to take this opportunity to thank ASG Robert Piper for his work as head of the DCO and for his dedication, commitment and hard work getting the DCO and the wider repositioned UNDS established and off to an excellent start. We wish him all the best in his new assignment and post.
Mr. Secretary General,
5. The world was already off-track to achieve the SDGs before the COVID-19 pandemic, which further exacerbated existing inequalities within and between countries.
6. More than two years on, developing countries continue to face significant obstacles in their recovery efforts, grappling with the triple crisis of recovering from the pandemic, achieving the SDGs during the remaining decade of action, and tackling climate change.
7. The repositioned UN Development System now faces the litmus test of whether it can significantly contribute to countries efforts to achieve the 2030 Agenda within the remaining decade of action.
8. The Group highlights the following elements we believe to be critical for this:
- First, the eradication of poverty in all its forms and dimensions must remain the system's overarching objective.
- Second, development itself must remain the focus, bearing in mind the different development levels and realities on the ground in all developing countries.
- Third, national ownership and leadership in all matters pertaining to the repositioning of the UN Development System is critical for the delivery of effective results. This includes effective and timely reporting from the Resident Coordinators and UN Country Teams to host governments.
- Fourth, it is crucial that the new UN Sustainable Development Cooperation Frameworks be developed in full consultation with host governments, and are reflective of country needs and priorities.
9. In this regards, the Group is encouraged to see the positive trend in feedback that UN activities in the Cooperation Frameworks are effectively responding to national priorities and hope that this will continue to improve.
10. We also appreciate the effort to report in-depth on the groups of countries in special situations and those facing specific challenges. We hope that future reports will continue such in-depth reporting.
11. On the critical role of financing for development and funding of UN Development agencies to support efforts of developing countries in achieving the 2030 Agenda and goals of the Paris Agreement, the Group is greatly concerned about the trend of major cuts in core allocation for development.
12. In addition to the pervasive imbalance between core and non-core resources, these recent funding cuts threaten the long-term viability of the UN development pillar, as a foundation also for global peace and security.
13. While the world is experiencing immediate humanitarian urgencies, we are also on the verge of a global development crisis and these cuts in core funding of the UNDS could have a lasting effects on the most vulnerable, stall the collective development trajectories over the last decades, well-being, and security of people in the developing world -as well as on the institutions that are designed to deliver on the development aspirations.
14. In many ways, cutting funding for development is the opposite of what the world needs at a moment when recovery from the COVID-19 Pandemic is urgent and we are facing global disruptions to supply chains, food insecurity, and energy insecurity in most developing regions, global price and market instability, inflationary pressures and a general decrease of global economic outputs.
15. We strongly reiterate the high level of importance programme countries accord to the core development mandate of the UN Development Agencies, in particular UNDP, in supporting countries towards the achievement of the SDGs, and we would like to stress the importance and necessity of core resources for the UNDP to deliver on its important mandates.
16. The Group notes the advancements made in the revamping of the Regional Level, including the development and roll-out of the Regional Collaborative Platforms and Issue Based Coalitions. We stress that these must proceed on a region-by-region basis and in accordance with the region's specific needs and priorities. We also call for a strengthening of the UN Regional Commissions.
17. To conclude, the Group reaffirms its continued support for a UN Development System that would help programme countries implement the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development and looks forward to meaningful exchanges during this Segment to better understand progress made, as well as the key challenges and gaps that still remain.
I thank you.