Senior officials to finalize today Doha Declaration
and Programme of Action to be adopted by South leaders


Doha, 12 June 2005--- The Second South Summit of the Group of 77 opened its first working session this morning at the Doha Sheraton Hotel at the level of senior officials and in presence of His Excellency Ambassador Stafford Neil, Chairman of the Group of 77 and Permanent Representative of Jamaica to the United Nations, Ambassador Nassir Abdulaziz Al-Nasser, Permanent Representative of the State of Qatar to the United Nations, and Mr. Mourad Ahmia, Executive Secretary of the Group of 77.

In his opening remarks to the senior officials of the 132 Member States of the Group of 77, Ambassador Stafford Neil, in his capacity as Chairman of the Group of 77, referred to the meeting as an "opportunity for the Group to demonstrate unity and solidarity in its pursuit to advance the collective will of its membership”. In the context of the reform proposal of the United Nations, Ambassador Neil added that "as we prepare for the 60 th session of the General Assembly and the impending consultations on the outcome document of the President of the General Assembly, we have to be firm, bold and clear in our articulation of the views and concerns of developing countries”. He stressed that the Group of 77 and China “must ensure that advancing the development agenda remains at the forefront of the reform and activities to be undertaken. While in Doha, we must avail ourselves of the opportunity to advance this objective and to ensure that the G-77 is fully equipped to take on the challenges of the very critical year”, he concluded.

Welcoming delegations to Doha, the Permanent Representative of the State of Qatar to the United Nations and former Chairman of the Group of 77 and China, Ambassador Nassir Abulaziz Al-Nasser, outlined “the need to establish a real global development agenda in which the Millennium Development Goals and the related role of the United Nations are given considerable significance”, in the perspective of the Millennium Summit, to be held in September, in New York. Ambassador Al-Nasser stressed the need to make “South-South cooperation the real instrument for our development, while recognizing that it cannot be a substitute for the North-South negotiations. With this understanding, we need to enhance the role of the South-South cooperation while seeking to improve our position in the international community”, he added.

Delegations convened in working groups to finalize the draft Doha Declaration and Programme of Action, to be submitted to the review of the Meeting of the Ministers of Foreign Affairs scheduled tomorrow, Monday 13 June, before their final adoption by the Summit of Heads of State and Government, scheduled from 14-16 June 2005.

The Group of 77 was established in 1964 by seventy-seven developing countries signatories of the “Joint Declaration of the Seventy-Seven Countries” issued at the end of the first session of the United Nations Conference on Trade and Development (UNCTAD) in Geneva. Beginning with the first Ministerial Meeting of the Group of 77 in Algiers in 1967 which adopted the Charter of Algiers, a permanent institutional structure gradually developed which led to the creation of Chapters of the Group of 77 in Rome (FAO); Vienna (UNIDO); Paris (UNESCO); Nairobi (UNEP); and the Group of 24 in Washington, DC (IMF and the World Bank). Although the membership of the G-77 has increased to 132 countries, the original name was retained because of its historical significance.

As the largest coalition of developing countries in the United Nations, the Group of 77 provides the means for the South to articulate and promote its collective economic interests and enhance its joint negotiating capacity on all major international economic issues in the United Nations system, including South-South cooperation.  


For more information, please visit the website of the Group of 77 at

Or contact Mr. Mourad Ahmia, Executive Secretary of the G-77
Summit Secretariat; Doha