UN chief urges rich nations to honor aid pledges
www.chinaview.cn 2007-10-24 07:26:43   Print

    UNITED NATIONS, Oct. 23 (Xinhua) -- UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon on Tuesday urged developed countries to honor their commitment to providing development assistance to developing countries.

    Speaking at a high-level UN event on financing for development, the UN chief said that progress on the implementation of the 2002 Monterrey Consensus has been mixed.

    "Since 2002, levels of official development assistance, including new commitments, rose only to fall off since last year," Ban said.

    "More importantly, the sustained increase required to meet targets agreed to decades ago, and reiterated in 2002 and 2005, have not materialized," he said.

    "Closing this funding gap is essential if we are to alleviate extreme poverty, fight diseases and achieve the other development targets," he said, adding that the challenge is even greater now with the need to mitigate and adapt to climate change.

    "This can only happen when donors meet their ODA commitment targets, and channel more resources through national budgets," he said.

    He also called for more steps to be taken by rich nations to reduce the debt owed by developing countries, saying that "putting all low-income countries on a sustainable path of debt repayment must be a priority."

    "And immediate action is needed to increase the voice and participation of developing countries in international decision-making, particularly in the international financial institutions," he said.

    "This is essential for the legitimacy, credibility and, ultimately, the effectiveness of these institutions," he said.

    The secretary-general said that the International Review Conference on Financing for Development, to be held in Doha next year, offers "a golden opportunity for all stakeholders to consolidate the gains made and to achieve new breakthroughs."

    "It is an opportunity to strengthen the solidarity and partnership between rich and poor countries that was created five years ago in Monterrey," he said.

    "I urge the international community to do its utmost to fulfill the commitments made at Monterrey, so that all countries, and all people, especially the poorest, can benefit," he added.

    In his report on the implementation of the International Conference on Financing for Development held from 18-22 March 2002in Monterrey, Mexico, the UN chief said that since the Monterrey Consensus, developing countries have worked to improve macroeconomic and fiscal management and increased social expenditure.

    But commitments by developed countries to provide new resources to support achievement of the Millennium Development Goals have not been fully met, the report said.

    While European Union countries have set goals to achieve a 0.7 percent ODA target by 2015, other large developed country donors still remain "considerably behind this target," it said.

    The High-Level Dialogue on Financing for Development, hosted bythe 62nd session of the UN General Assembly, is to lay the ground for a review of anti-poverty promises pledged by world leaders in the 2002 Monterrey Consensus.

    At the 2002 Monterrey conference, developing countries took primary responsibility for their development, and for mobilizing domestic resources. Developed countries, in turn, agreed to provide assistance and promote an enabling international environment for development.


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Editor: Jiang Yuxia
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