STATEMENT ON BEHALF OF THE GROUP OF 77 AND CHINA BY AMBASSADOR MUNIR AKRAM, PERMANENT REPRESENTATIVE OF PAKISTAN TO THE UNITED NATIONS, AT THE GENERAL DEBATE OF THE 2022 ECOSOC FORUM ON FINANCING FOR DEVELOPMENT (New York, 25 April 2022)
Dear Colleagues and participant,
It is my honour to deliver the statement on behalf of G77 and China.
We are facing a triple challenge: recovery from the Covid-19 Pandemic; achieving the SDGs within the remaining decade of action; and combating climate change.
Undeniably, the Covid-19 Pandemic has added to the financial difficulties of the developing countries while exacerbated existing inequalities within and between countries.
It has compelled governments in the developing countries to make hard choices often diverting development resources for crisis recovery and relief.
The SDG financing gap has now reached to $4.3tn per year. It is feared that owing to the extreme economic hardship, unsustainable debt burden, high borrowing cost, rising inflation, illicit financial flows, and difficulties in accessing concessional finance many developing countries would not be able to recover soon from the crisis and achieve the SDGs.
Road to recovery from Covid-19 Pandemic and achievement of the 2030 agenda would first of all need ensuring global and equitable access to safe and effective Covid-19 vaccines at affordable prices as well as agreement that intellectual property rights should be interpreted and implemented in a manner that they remain supportive of the right of States to protect public health and promote access to medicines for all.
Second, the Group urges the elimination of safe havens that create incentives for the transfer of stolen assets and illicit financial flows and emphasize strong commitment to ensuring the return of stolen assets to the countries of origin.
The Group is concerned that there is still no single global inclusive forum for tax cooperation at the intergovernmental level. The Group reiterates its call for the full upgrade of the Committee of Experts in Tax Matters to a UN intergovernmental body, with experts representing their respective governments.
Third, the Group calls for scaling up financing to protect the livelihood and health of everyone, particularly those in vulnerable situations, close the financing gap, invest in full and productive employment and decent work for all and strengthen and generalizing social protection systems.
Four, we stress that investment in sustainable and quality infrastructure is critical for an inclusive COVID-19 recovery and for acceleration towards achieving the SDGs. Public financing should be scaled up to catalyze private investments in sustainable and resilient infrastructure that will help to achieve the 2030 Agenda. The UN system should also provide support to the developing countries for maintaining a pipeline of bankable projects.
Five, the Group urges developed countries to fulfill their unmet ODA commitments to developing countries to achieve the national target of 0.7 % of gross national income and 0.15 to 0.20 % of ODA/GNI to the least developed countries. The Group also stresses that ODA and other concessional finance still relevant for middle-income countries.
Six, the Group emphasizes for special and differential treatment for developing countries in harnessing the developmental benefit of international trade.
The Group also recognizes that multilateral trading system relies on a universal, rule-based, open, transparent, inclusive, non-discriminatory multilateral trading system as embodied in the WTO.
The Group remains alerted by the increase in the unilateral and protectionist measures that will not only undermine the multilateral trading system, but also will lead to negative impact on access of the developing countries' exports to the global markets.
As stated in 2030 Agenda, States are strongly urged to refrain from promulgating and applying any unilateral economic, financial or trade measures not in accordance with international law and the Charter of the United Nations that impede the full achievement of economic and social development, particularly in developing countries.
Seven, The Group, expresses concern over the increasing debt vulnerabilities of developing countries, the tightening of global financial conditions, and in this regard, emphasize the urgency for additional actions and further initiatives to strengthen the international financial architecture for long-term debt sustainability.
While appreciating historic allocation of $650bn SDRs, we encourage countries with strong external positions to voluntary channel at least $250bn special drawing rights to all developing countries in need.
Eight, inaccurate ratings can impact the cost of borrowing and the stability of the international financial system. Given their role in either facilitating or hampering progress on debt treatment and affecting the cost of borrowing, it would be important that credit rating agencies ensure that their ratings are objective, independent and based on accurate information and sound analytical methods.
Nine, commitment by developed countries to provide US$ 100 billion per year by 2020 is already overdue. We therefore call upon the developed countries to honor their commitment and provide financial resources of at least USD 100 billion per year to assist developing countries in their climate change actions with at least half allocated to adaptation. We also recommit to the decisions to set a new collective quantified climate finance goal from a floor of 100 billion United States dollars per year and by 2024.
I thank you.