Friday, April 25, 2008

UNCTAD XII Diary: Day 5: Final Outcome--UNCTAD XIII in QATAR!

Final session is being given by UNCTAD official

RESEARCH and ANALYSIS--solid mandate. Conference has reinforced official mandate. Innovative work. Short mandate for UNCTAD. Great. Policy options and independent analysis for developing countries. Significant.

Another area is the...role of trade and development board in conducting policy dialogue...has been retained and reinforced. So UNCTAD will continue with that on the inter-governmental level. Will review some of its flagship documents. Ministerial meeting in Addis Ababa, UNCTAD should have a commission on globalisation; this was a problem for some UNCTAD members...theer will be some discussion on globalisation issues; atr least some compromise.

UNCTAD will have two commissions--one on trade and development and will address any topic that UNCTAD has; second one will be on enterprise development and ?? Multi-yr extract groups. Issues identified by Trade and development board will be taken to the Commissions. Secretariat is still very important.

12.03pm Palestin issue being retained. Slightly problematic yesterday. A rather contentious issue that could have affected outcome. Last few hours, agreed on s.o. that satisfied everyone. UNCTAD continues to support Palestine liberation with technical assistance.

any questions?

YAO GRAHAM: Commissions reduced from Three to two. Commission on enterprise...what are practical implications of having globalisation as standing issue. How will it have a cross-cutting effect on how the Commission does its work? Doesn't strike as a mandate to work, but something to discuss?

RESPONSE: Our view is not the number of commissions that matter; more about what they do. Will feed into general assembly. The proposal by Africa group to have one on globalisation is not because we do not, but there will be continuous work on it.  Partly political, partly practical. Every year, we will have to prepare a background document on a specific area of globalisation.

EKB: my questions are answered below:

WORLD INVESTMENT REPORT--continued interaction with private sector. Outcome emphasises UNCTAD working with civil society and private sector

COMMUNICATIONS STRATEGY--there was a paragraph in the document that referred to that.

Jo Butler speaks @ 12.13pm--Irish government provided minimum transportation and living costs. WIll try and get funding in future to go to Geneva. Commend the document. We are very pleased we have an accord. It is a good accord. Everyone will find something missing. Can be built upon the next four years.

In SAO PAOLO(UNCTAD XI), we can say it is Sao Paolo plus. WE will still have hearings once a year in context of trade and devt board; will also ensure civil society is part and parcel...CS needs to be heard, and member states need to be advised on how to be prioritised. Having a hearing once a year whereby civil society comes to Geneva is certainlhy not enough. Need to know that CSOs are an integral part. Ideas and suggestions forward so that work can be realised.

CHALLENGES IN ACCRA: we can congratulate Ghanaian govt to having sacrificed much to pass it over. Constraints to documentation. Let us not have Ghanaian govt to make one million copies, etc. Lots of statements would be avaliable on the Web. Happy to send statements through the mail. We try to take an attitude to constraint and restraint. If you heard speech on Monday and did not get it, probably because we did not have it.

HOTEL ACCOMMODATION; ensuring that all participants had a suitable room was responsibility of host, but we had to be creative by checking homes, apartments, etc. To that end, team came THREE weeks in advance. Happy to answer any questions. 12.19pm.

INTERACTIVITY--everyone wants to be heard. Panellists to a minimum and interactivity to the highest leevl, but when you have so many coming from afar, they want to be heard! For the future, going beyond read statements. The ACCRA Accord does not stop here. It is a work in progress. How we implement mandates in next four years matter.

Look forward to hearing from you in the future.

YAO GRAHAM: we will put together a report about the forum to put on the website. We have compiled a list of participants. Some registered but did not turn up. UNCTAD also haas its own lists. Have had a summary of some events and that will all go up. We can optimise the amount of information. We have a common interest,. That networking part is where we have a responsibility. Just last word on the costs, some brought by UNCTAD, daily amount not enough for costs. Some future work for the UN and their data. Hotels are expensive in Accra.

Let me say here on behalf of the African participants, there is a pattern. Very little African representation. Certainly more than in Sao Paolo. Next meeting in QATAR , challenge. Prices went through the roof in Doha 2001, let alone in 2012, UNCTAD XII. Nothing more to say. Just again to thank you for your forbearance.

Thankyou all very much; have a safe journey back home.

done @ 12.27pm (uneditted)
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