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The 17th Conference of the Parties (COP17) to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) and the 7th Session of the Conference of the Parties serving as the meeting of the parties (CMP7) to the Kyoto Protocol was held in the sunny city of Durban, South Africa.

 

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Statements and Speeches

Statement on Behalf of the Group of 77 and China by H.E. Ambassador Kingsley J.N. Mamabolo, Permanent Rresentative of the Republic of South Africa to the United Nations, Chair of the Group of 77, at the High-Level Committee on South-South Cooperation's Special Inter-Sessional Meeting

New York, 8 September 2015

Mr President,

At the outset, I would like to thank you for convening the current Informal consultations of the High-level Committee on South-South Cooperation.

The Group of 77 and China notes the Secretary-General's Report of 4 September 2015 where it made recommendations aiming to improve the system-wide governance, focus, coherence and coordination of South-South Cooperation, in order to maximize its developmental impact. We believe more work is needed in terms of making the Office of South-South Cooperation in making it fit for purpose, particularly while moving towards adopting the post-2015 development agenda.

The Group however, laments late release of the Secretary-General's report. It is our utmost belief that member states should be provided sufficient time to read and study this document way ahead of Sessions of this magnitude. Meetings of this nature should add value to discussions on South-South Cooperation rather than being marginalized and as such being relegated to the doldrums.

Mr President,

Allow me to reiterate our well-known position that South-South cooperation is a manifestation of solidarity among peoples and countries of the South that contributes to their national well-being, national and collective self-reliance and the attainment of the internationally agreed development goals, including the Millennium Development Goals.

And in this regard, as mentioned in the Nairobi Outcome document, South-South Cooperation and its agenda have to be set by countries of the South and should continue to be guided by the principles of respect for national sovereignty, national ownership and independence, equality, non-conditionality, non-interference in domestic affairs and mutual benefit. At the same time, we reiterate that South-South cooperation is not a substitute for, but rather a complement to, North-South cooperation.

The Group is of the view that this is also an opportune time to maximize the potentiality of South-South Cooperation as we move towards negotiations of the next QCPR, while moving along with the critically important Nairobi Outcome document principles.

Mr President,

Following our previous requests the Group hoped that the current report would, inter alia, put the following into perspective:

- the Secretary-General to present as part of his comprehensive report to the High-level Committee at this special inter-sessional session in consultation with Member States, the Office for South-South Cooperation and the United Nations Development Programme, a comprehensive proposal on up-scaling the Office in financial, human and budgetary terms, including through the appointment of the Special Representative of the Secretary-General on South-South Cooperation, and at the same time recommending specific contributions of the United Nations Development Programme under such a change; and

- Requesting an update regarding the Administrator of the United Nations Development Programme, as Chair of the United Nations Development Group, regarding progress on establishing a more formalized and strengthened inter-agency mechanism, coordinated by the United Nations Office for South-South Cooperation, with a view to encouraging joint support for South-South and triangular initiatives, as well as sharing information on development activities and results achieved by various organizations through their respective business models in support of South-South Cooperation and Triangular Cooperation.

Mr President,

Pursuant to the General Assembly resolution of 69/239, the Group of 77 and China would like to, inter alia, reiterate the following:

- Call for the further strengthening of the Office for South-South Cooperation before a decision is taken on the long-standing request to separate the Office for South-South Cooperation.

- The Group would like to find out the rationale around the preference of the Secretary-General on strengthening the Office of South-South Cooperation under the auspices of the UNDP. We need to understand what informed this rationale in order for Member States to understand what this entails in terms of strengthening the capacity of this Office as we move towards the adoption of the Post-2015 Development Agenda.

Mr President,

The Group would like to reiterate that North-South Cooperation is still the core of global partnership for development. South-South Cooperation, Triangular Cooperation and the private sector are complements rather than substitutes thereof.

Further, the Official Development Assistance (ODA) represents the major source of financing for the development of many developing countries and it must target the eradication of poverty in its multiple dimensions. The Group further proposes that the unfulfilled ODA commitments of the developed countries on the unfinished Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) should be carried forward and the impact of the "ODA deficit" be assessed and estimated in the context of the review of the implementation of the Monterrey Consensus and Doha Declaration, as a matter of urgency.

Mr President,

The Group of 77 and China is of the firm view that the issue of policy space for national governments must also be respected. Individual Member State regulations on public domestic financing must be the prerogative of national governments, in accordance with their own specific needs and objectives. The manner in which additional forms of financing are incorporated must also recognize the role of governments in regulating financing channels to fund development programmes that are being implemented in their countries. This should not be confused with the objectives of South-South Cooperation as the resources emanating from public budgeting are mainly used in delivering services to the population, in line with the priorities of the respective governments.

Mr President,

The Group is of the view that there is need to recognize the importance of considering South-South Cooperation and Triangular Cooperation in the context of the elaboration of the post-2015 development agenda, considering its role as a complement to North-South cooperation.

Thank you.