CHAPTER III: ECONOMIC ISSUES
Globalisation and Interdependence
The Ministers expressed their deep concern over the increasing disparities between developed and developing countries and the growing marginalisation of developing countries, in particular, the LDCs, from the benefits of globalisation. They called for concrete measures to ensure that developing countries participate in and benefit from globalisation, especially through their full and effective participation in the international economic decision-making and norm-setting processes, in particular, in the international financial and trade institutions.
The Ministers believed that the central focus of international development efforts should be on the creation of an enabling international economic environment, which is critical for developing countries to acquire the requisite capacities to successfully compete and fully benefit from globalisation. The Ministers recalled the United Nations Millennium Declaration which commits all Members States at the highest level to make globalisation a positive force for all the world’s people and seeks to ensure that the benefits of globalisation are shared equitably by all, as a central challenge for the international community.
The Ministers emphasized the need for better understanding by the developed countries of the importance of international actions aimed at addressing the critical problems facing developing countries. In this regard, they urged developed countries to take specific actions such as increasing grant aid and loans on concessional terms, measures to counter the instability and weakness of commodity markets, preferential tariffs and enhanced market access for products of export interest to developing countries, debt relief, establish mechanisms for the transfer of technology and know-how, including information and communication technologies, and undertake basic reforms in the international financial architecture as well as not to adopt and enforce measures and actions which adversely impact the economic situations of developing countries.
The increasing interdependence of national economies in a globalising world and the emergence of rule-based regimes for international economic relations have meant that the space for national economic policy, i.e. the scope for domestic policies, especially in the areas of trade, investment and industrial development, is now often framed by international disciplines, commitments and global market considerations. It is for each Government to evaluate the trade-off between the benefits of accepting international rules and commitments and the constraints posed by the loss of policy space. However, in the light of the accepted premise of national responsibility for development and national ownership of development strategies, it is incumbent upon the international community as a whole to consider the issue of an appropriate balance between national policy space and international disciplines and commitments when deciding collectively on future disciplines and commitments and on the implementation and interpretation of existing ones.
The Ministers reaffirmed the central role of the United Nations in the promotion of international co-operation for development in the context of globalisation and interdependence. It is evident that a large number of Member Countries of the Non- Aligned Movement, particularly in Africa and the LDCs, have been marginalised and