DUBAI, UAE - Breaking the old paradigm of “North-South” development support, the United Nations has, for the 8th year in a row, convened a global expo of South-South development, this time hosted by the United Arab Emirates in Dubai.
The annual event, which hosted more than 20 UN agencies and over 70 other partner organizations showcasing their best practices, also included a series of 16 “solution forums” where key stakeholders from throughout the Global South engaged with their counterparts to exchange knowledge and experiences on a wide range of issues including food security, public-private partnership, green technology transfer, economic growth, industrial innovation, global health, youth empowerment, and peace-building.
“Since its inception in 2008, the Global South-South Development Expo has established itself as a powerful platform to promote co-operation and partnerships across the Global South in support of developing countries’ sustainable development aspirations,” said Tegegnework Gettu, Associate Administrator of the United Nations Development Programme.
Jorge Chediek, Envoy of the Secretary-General on South-South Cooperation and Director of the United Nations Office for South-South Cooperation, said this year’s event was made possible by the Dubai-based Zayed International Foundation for the Environment on behalf of the United Arab Emirates.
“We are eternally grateful to the Zayed Foundation’s senior management for its leadership, hospitality and untiring efforts which made this Expo a resounding success on all levels,” said Chediek.
Her Majesty Queen Noor Al Hussein of Jordan opened the conference by pointing out that the global development cooperation landscape is changing rapidly. “Developing countries and emerging economies have become key actors not only in trade and investment, but also in global and regional development,” she said at the opening. “They have amassed rich, ground-breaking and diversified development practices and are actively supporting each other to find practical and relevant policy solutions.”
Patrick Ignatius Gomes, Secretary-General of the African, Caribbean and Pacific Group of States (ACP), said in his closing statement that this week Dubai was “turned into the capital of the Global South with intense and critical debates, sharing knowledge, experiences and best practices, forging and enhancing partnerships.”
“In sharing our experiences, best practices and knowledge,” he said, “we were able to learn from each other on how we can better face the implementation of Sustainable Development Goals.”
A follow-up forum is schedule for tomorrow, 4 November, at the same venue when national focal points on South-South Cooperation and heads of Development Cooperation from the Arab States, Europe and the Commonwealth of Independent States (CIS) will convene to discuss how to implement the decisions taken during the Global Expo.
In addition, the Zayed Foundation for the Environment will work closely with UNOSSC to publish a special edition of its South-South In Action series entitled ‘UAE Solutions: South-South and Triangular Contributions to Sustainable Development’. “This multimedia publication will highlight the leadership of the UAE in the sharing of South-South cooperation for effective development and will include a collection of all the solutions, strategies and lessons learned showcased at the Expo,” said Chediek.
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For more information and to register: unossc.org