• Sun. Apr 21st, 2024

The 5th United Nations Conference on LDCs intervenes with a Ten-Year Program of Action


Mar 9, 2023

DOHA March 9th (ABP) – The Secretary General of the United Nations, Antonio Guterres, in his solemn opening address of the work of the fifth United Nations Conference on the Least Developed Countries (LDCs) delivered on March 5 2023, calls for global solidarity to leave no one behind and move from “potential to prosperity”. For him, a real revolution is needed in terms of assistance at three levels. This is, first, immediate assistance to achieve the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), second, support to mobilize and optimize national resources and, finally, imperative reform of the global financial system. Mr. Guterres appreciates the Doha Program of Action which is a practical guide containing concrete objectives.

He cites, among others, the International Investment Support Center for LDCs, the Support Mechanism for Sustainable Reclassification and the Online University, which are to be started according to the program.

He worries that the world is undergoing constant and unexpected changes. “War in Ukraine has since erupted, with a devastating impact not only on Ukrainians but also on LDCs, faced with rising food and energy prices as tensions and divisions in the world are only getting worse”.

That is why he called on the world to unite again, believing that there is perhaps no more crucial question around which the world must and can unite than that of transforming words of the Doha Program of Action into tangible results.

                                                                                     View of the participants

Trapped in a rising tide of crises, uncertainty, climate chaos and profound global injustice, LDCs do not have the means to keep up with extremely rapid technological change, Guterres said. He points out that in LDCs unemployment is rising, especially among young people while women are being sidelined.

He condemns the deeply biased global financial system that gives LDCs the worst possible treatment. By the way of illustration, he  indicated interest rates up to eight times higher that LDCs have to pay compared to developed countries. “Today, 25 developing countries devote more than 20% of their public revenues not to building schools, feeding their populations, or even to the opportunities offered to women and girls, but only to the debt service,” he said indignantly.

For his part, the Emir of Qatar, Mr. Tamim Bin Hamad Al-Thani believes that the Doha Program of Action on LDCs adopted by the UN General Assembly will be a roadmap to solve the problems of LDCs, over the next decade. Thus, in his capacity as Chairman of the Conference, he reminded the rich and developed countries of their moral responsibility to help the LDCs: “It is not a favor”, he underlined by announcing himself a donation of 60 million dollars to support the implementation of the Program while inviting other Member States to follow his example.

The young Reekelitsoe Molapo from Lesotho, who represents the youth from the 46 LDCs, or 226 million people, explained how eager they are to move from potential to prosperity. She also pleaded for a partnership between young people from LDCs. She thanked Burundi President Evariste Ndayishimiye for his concern in favor African youth in general and Burundian youth in particular.