A report by the UN Group of Eminent Persons, has called for international
support and ``determined national action'' to help the Least Developed Countries
(LDC) to break out of a decades-long poverty trap.
The report, was
released on Tuesday at the UN headquarters, ahead of a summit on the LDCs in
A statement on the report, which was made available to PANA in New
York, stated that, ``there is upward progress in category after category of
economic and human well-being indicators by developed and dynamic developing
countries, while LDC trends are close to flat-lining''.
It also noted
the high incidence of conflicts in countries with extreme poverty and weak
institutions, saying that, ``increasing marginalization of the LDCs is creating
a future that we, as a global community, cannot afford''.
however, said that the report outlined some measures to overcome the problems
confronting the LDCs.
They include adequate, prioritized and better
targeted development assistance, duty- and quota-free access for LDC exports,
doubling farm productivity and school enrolment in these countries and beefing
up the developmental and democratic capacities of LDC governments.
panel also promotes an innovative scheme for cooperation with neighbouring
countries in six sub-regions where LDCs are located, and also linking the least
developed countries themselves in geographically oriented self-help groupings,''
``This is the time for global solidarity to achieve progress
even in the poorest countries of the world, which will go a long way in
advancing global prosperity and security,” the report stated.
LDCs include 33 in sub-Saharan Africa and outlying islands, 14 in South Asia and
Oceania, and one (Haiti) in the Caribbean.
The upcoming Fourth UN
Conference on the Least Developed Countries takes place 9-13 May in Istanbul,
The Group of Eminent Persons are co-chair Alpha Oumar Konare,
former President of Mali and former Chairman of the African Union Commission,
and James Wolfensohn, former President of the World Bank.
Others on the
panel are Sir Fazle Hasan Abed, the founder and chairperson of the Bangladesh
Rehabilitation Assistance Committee, Nancy Birdsall, the founding president of
the Centre for Global Development and Kemal Dervis, vice president and director
of Global Economy and Development at the Brookings Institution.
Richard Jolly, Honorary Professor of the Institute of Development Studies at the
University of Sussex, Louis A. Kasekende, Deputy Governor of the Bank of Uganda,
Louis Michel, a member of the European Parliament and Hiromasa Yonekura,
chairman of Sumitomo Chemical Company Ltdare on the panel