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Executive Secretary Stresses Importance


UN-ESCWA Executive Secretary, Mr. Bader Aldafa stressed today the importance of promoting cooperation among developing countries, as well as the role that public-private partnership could play on this level. Aldafa laid these comments out in the presentation entitled “South-South Cooperation and Public-Private Partnership for Development”, which he made before the Second Committee of the UN General Assembly in New York (Economic and Financial).

In his presentation, Aldafa identified potential areas of South-South Cooperation (SSC), which include transport and tourism, in addition to water management and infrastructure, inter alia. Tackling the subject of SSC in the UN-ESCWA region, Aldafa said it was well rooted in this region where intra-regional trade for example reached $92 billion, while investment flows attained $5.8 billion and Official Development Assistance (ODA) $15 billion. The Executive Secretary spoke of the role of public-private partnerships and that of governments within the framework of SSC. Aldafa also laid out the role that UN-ESCWA plays in this matter, namely on three fronts: policy development, regional integration and technology transfer. The Regional Commission expands its activities on several levels, such as trade, water and energy, and information and communication technology, to service SSC.

UN-ESCWA also signed today, along with other UN Regional Commissions, a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU), with the Secretariat of the Convention on Biological Diversity (SCBD)., to enhance the cooperation and collaboration between the SCBD and the UN Regional Commissions. The MoU comes at a time when the international community is redoubling its efforts to achieve the 2010 Biodiversity Target, and UN Regional Commissions have decided to support the objectives of the Convention, in order to integrate biodiversity into regional development cooperation and processes. This is the first agreement of its kind with a Multilateral Environment Agreement (MEA), and will make a significant contribution to the on-going efforts of Secretary General Ban Ki- moon aimed at enhancing global environmental coherence through the One UN program.

With 190 Parties, the CBD is one of the most broadly subscribed international environmental treaties in the world. The CBD holds three main goals: the conservation of biodiversity, sustainable use of its components and the equitable sharing of the benefits arising from the utilization of genetic resources.