KATHMANDU: Deputy Prime Minister and Minister for Foreign Affairs Narayan Kaji Shrestha said on Monday that despite the efforts of Least Developed Countries(LDCs) and international support for LDCs over three decades, social and economic transformation in the LDCs has not met our expectations.
Shrestha chaired the Annual Ministerial Meeting of the LDCs in New York and while addressing the meeting in Nepal’s capacity as chair of the Global Coordination Bureau of the LDCs, he said, “Structural challenges continue to constrain LDCs’ genuine development aspirations and efforts. It is a matter of grave concern that half of the LDCs population still lives below poverty line at a time when both the knowledge and the means for the eradication of poverty are well within our collective capacity.”
While highlighting the importance of the Istanbul Declaration and Istanbul Program of Action (IPOA) adopted by the United Nations Fourth LDC Conference which broadened the base for global consensus for the LDC’s development, Shrestha called for an enhanced level of international support measures for effective implementation of the IPOA in line with priorities it has defined and in accord with national priorities of each LDC. He further emphasized that the LDCs need specific and targeted international support measures to build their strong and sustained resilience to withstand endogenous and exogenous shocks which is essential to achieve sustained economic growth and sustainable development.
He also recalled that the IPOA has reaffirmed the principle of national leadership and ownership of development process. However, without providing meaningful international support measures, it is less likely that they alone can fulfill the IPOA commitments and actions.
Shrestha underlined the importance of Foreign Direct Investment; effective market access and supply-side capacity in trade; development of the private and public sector; and technology transfer and promotion of endogenous technological capacities in moving forward a holistic development agenda in the LDCs.
Ban Ki-moon, Secretary-General, also addressed the Ministerial Meeting. The Secretary-General termed the IPOA as development compact agreed by the development partners and LDCs themselves and assured the LDCs of every support that he could lend for the effective implementation of IPOA.
Ambassador Gyan Chandra Acharya, Permanent Representative of Nepal to the United Nations provided an update on the various activities carried by the LDC Chair and bureau in the last one year. Likewise, Cheick Sidi Diarra, Under Secretary-General and High Representative for LDCs, LLDCs and SIDS highlighted various steps taken towards the implementation of the IPOA.
Deputy Prime Minister and Minister for Foreign Affairs, Shrestha will leave New York for Kathmandu today. He will arrive in Kathmandu on 28th of September 2011. Acting Foreign Secretary Durga Prasad Bhattarai will accompany DPM and FM.