International Cooperation

IsDB, SC, UNCTAD & UNOSSC Joint Publication, April 2024

Leveraging the Potential of South-South and Triangular Cooperation for the Decade of Action

A joint publication by Islamic Development Bank (IsDB), South Centre, United Nations Trade and Development (UNCTAD) and United Nations Office for South-South Cooperation (UNOSSC)

This document was prepared for a Side Event to the 19th Non-Aligned Movement (NAM) Summit and Third South Summit, held in Kampala, Uganda in January 2024.

This joint initiative is meant to provide a detailed look at the current state of South-South and Triangular Cooperation (SSTrC) and consider how international development cooperation and the role of developing countries can be enhanced in the future.

The paper aims to, inter alia, explore the landscape of SSTrC uncovered by the COVID-19 pandemic and recent global events; look at how the pandemic acted as a stress test for international cooperation; consider the national institution building necessary for effectively engaging in SSTrC; and suggest different ways forward for leveraging SSTrC towards building resilient societies and achieving national development priorities, the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development and the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). It considers the possibilities of leveraging SSTrC for enhancing the transfer of knowledge, experiences and technologies within the Global South and increased capacity building in developing countries.

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South Centre Statement to 19th NAM Summit, 19-20 January 2024

Statement for the 19th Summit of Heads of State and Government of the Non-Aligned Movement

Kampala, Uganda

19-20 January 2024

The South Centre addressed the 19th Summit of NAM, and highlighted that international cooperation and SSTrC are vital for facing global challenges and fostering a more peaceful and interconnected world.

The Centre emphasized that the experience and achievements of NAM should play a major role in the efforts to reform the international economic order towards sustainable development, poverty eradication, and fair and equitable global governance.

The NAM has a major role to promote international cooperation, sustainable development, peace & security, and ensuring shared global affluence for its member States. The South Centre stands ready to support the NAM to achieve their common objectives and priorities.

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SC Statement to HRC54 General Debate Item 3, 21 September 2023

Statement

General Debate – Item 3

54th regular session of the Human Rights Council

South Centre

21 September 2023

The South Centre appreciates the presentation of the thematic reports, and the reports of the Working Groups on the Right to Development and Private Military and Security Companies.

The South Centre will continue supporting developing countries for the achievement of these objectives and the provision of innovative solutions for tackling the unique challenges faced by developing and least developed countries.

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SC Statement – Interactive Dialogue with the Expert Mechanism on RtD, 20 September 2023

Statement during the Interactive Dialogue with the Expert Mechanism on the Right to Development

54th regular session of the Human Rights Council

South Centre

20 September 2023

The South Centre, as an intergovernmental organization of developing countries, welcomes the annual report presented by the Expert Mechanism on the Right to Development.

We would like to express support to the Expert Mechanism on the Right to Development, highlighting that international cooperation and solidarity among States are indispensable means to achieve the objectives set out in the Declaration of the Right to Development.

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Research Paper 179, 14 July 2023

Reinvigorating the Non-Aligned Movement for the Post-COVID-19 Era

By Yuefen Li, Daniel Uribe and Danish

The Non-Aligned Movement (NAM) was born out of the need felt by newly emerging post-colonial nations not to be compelled to be part of any single political or military bloc during the Cold War. As the international community finds itself once again in the midst of heightened geo-political tensions, the principles of non-alignment have seen a resurgence in the Global South, providing NAM with the potential to become a major force in the configuration of a new international order.

Over six decades after its inception, the NAM stands at a crucial juncture, where consolidating non-alignment among developing countries can help build solidarity, promote collaboration and defend the interest of developing countries in the reconfiguration of global governance. Dealing with these challenges requires unprecedented levels of international cooperation, both North-South and South-South. As the grouping of non-aligned countries, the NAM could play an important role against global fragmentation, build solidarity, and strengthen multilateralism.

This paper therefore looks at the role and position of the NAM at this time, and how it can be reinvigorated to address the most critical challenges facing its Member States and other developing countries today. Considering the history, evolution and important achievements of the NAM, the paper provides some proposals that can support NAM Member States in their recovery from the COVID-19 pandemic and make progress in implementing the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development.

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Reinvigorating NAM for the Post-COVID-19 Era, July 2023

Reinvigorating the Non-Aligned Movement for the Post-COVID-19 Era

By Yuefen Li, Daniel Uribe and Danish

The Non-Aligned Movement (NAM) was born out of the need felt by newly emerging post-colonial nations not to be compelled to be part of any single political or military bloc during the Cold War. As the international community finds itself once again in the midst of heightened geo-political tensions, the principles of non-alignment have seen a resurgence in the Global South, providing NAM with the potential to become a major force in the configuration of a new international order.

Over six decades after its inception, the NAM stands at a crucial juncture, where consolidating non-alignment among developing countries can help build solidarity, promote collaboration and defend the interest of developing countries in the reconfiguration of global governance. Dealing with these challenges requires unprecedented levels of international cooperation, both North-South and South-South. As the grouping of non-aligned countries, the NAM could play an important role against global fragmentation, build solidarity, and strengthen multilateralism.

This paper therefore looks at the role and position of the NAM at this time, and how it can be reinvigorated to address the most critical challenges facing its Member States and other developing countries today. Considering the history, evolution and important achievements of the NAM, the paper provides some proposals that can support NAM Member States in their recovery from the COVID-19 pandemic and make progress in implementing the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development.

This is an advance draft of the Research Paper.

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SC Contribution – Call for Inputs by UN SR on RtD, June 2023

Inputs – Special Rapporteur on the Right to Development

“Role of businesses in realising the right to development”

South Centre

June 2023

The Human Rights Council, in its resolution 33/14 of 29 September 2016, established the mandate of the United Nations Special Rapporteur on the right to development. In 2023, the Special Rapporteur will present a report on “the role of business in realising the right to development in the context of the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development and other relevant international human rights instruments” to the United Nations General Assembly in October 2023.

With the objective of collecting information regarding the role of businesses in realising the right to development, Prof Surya Deva, Special Rapporteur on the Right to Development, made an open call for inputs from various stakeholders such as States, international organisations, national human rights institutions, civil society organisations, and others.

In line with its programme of work, the South Centre is keen to submit the following information to the Special Rapporteur on the Right to Development considering the need to achieve progress on the fulfilment of social rights, in particular the Right to Development (RtD) and its interface with issues such as climate change, corporate responsibility, food security and small farmers’ livelihood.

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SC Intervention – UNGA Pandemic Multi-stakeholder Hearing, 9 May 2023

Summary of the intervention by Carlos Correa, Executive Director of the South Centre, at the UN General Assembly – Pandemic Prevention, Preparedness and Response Multi-Stakeholder Hearing, New York, May 9th, 2023

The response to COVID-19 revealed serious shortcomings in the multilateral system. Despite solemn declarations, it was unable to ensure equity in addressing its health, economic and social impacts. See a summary of the South Centre’s intervention at the UN General Assembly – Pandemic Prevention, Preparedness and Response Multi-Stakeholder Hearing below.

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SC Submission to the Global Digital Compact, April 2023

Submission to the Global Digital Compact

Apply Human Rights Online

 South Centre

 Geneva, April 2023

The South Centre’s Board approved in September 2022 its Programme of Work 2023-2025 where the policy dimensions of digital transformation are highlighted as one of the priority areas for developing countries, including the need to harness digital technologies in education, health and the production of goods and services, support the development of a domestic digital industry, improve their digital infrastructure, advance digital equity and inclusion, effectively tax the digital companies and contribute to shaping the digital governance architecture to advance the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).

Following the call made in the Declaration on the Commemoration of the Seventy-Fifth Anniversary of the United Nations (A/RES/75/1) for improved digital cooperation, the United Nations (UN) Secretary General’s Roadmap for Digital Cooperation and his report ‘Our Common Future’, the South Centre submits the following written contribution to the UN Secretary General ahead to the Summit of the Future with the objective of providing support to developing countries in the intergovernmental process concerning the digital transformation.

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South Centre Statement to the G-24, 11 April 2023

STATEMENT BY DR. CARLOS CORREA, EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR OF THE SOUTH CENTRE, TO THE MINISTERS AND GOVERNORS MEETING OF THE INTERGOVERNMENTAL GROUP OF TWENTY-FOUR (G-24)

11 April 2023, Washington, D.C.

Solidarity and international cooperation is needed now more than ever to address the multiple challenges that disproportionately affect developing countries. See the South Centre’s statement to the G-24.

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SC Contribution to the UNSG Report, 24 February 2023

Strengthening United Nations Actions in the Field of Human Rights through the Promotion of International Cooperation

South Centre

Geneva, 24 February 2023

The South Centre submits the following written contribution to the United Nations Secretary General’s Report on ‘Strengthening the United Nations’ action in the field of human rights through the promotion of international cooperation’, in line with the United Nations General Assembly (UNGA) resolution A/RES/76/164, adopted on 16 December 2021. The resolution recognises the need for respecting the political, economic and social realities of each society in compliance with the principles and purposes of the Charter of the United Nations. The report to be presented by the Secretary-General to the UNGA represents an important opportunity to recognise that global challenges do not affect all societies equally, and that they require a broader consideration of policies and innovative solutions that can cater to the unique realities and specific needs of each society.

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Research Paper 174, 13 February 2023

Leading and Coordinating Global Health: Strengthening the World Health Organization  

By Nirmalya Syam

The World Health Organization (WHO) should act as the directing and coordinating authority in global health but it has been steadily marginalized over time by design, through criticism as an inefficient organization, the reduction of assessed contributions and consequent impoverishment, and the proliferation of “new” international health agencies to which WHO has been compelled to cede operational space. This paper discusses how such marginalization of the WHO is in the interest of the dominant actors in global health, and leads to the neglect of health as a development issue. Today the global health system is more fragmented than it was when the WHO was established in 1948. Rich donor countries and corporations dominate multistakeholder governance structures in health partnerships, marginalizing most of the WHO membership and, notably, the Global South, in their decision-making. A consequence of this fragmentation in global health governance is that the space of the only multilateral organization where developing countries have an equal presence in terms of participation and decision-making as sovereign States –WHO– has been marginalized. Consequently, the development dimension of health is also marginalized and only the development assistance aspects of it receive major attention through vertical programmes and agencies addressing limited health needs without effectively addressing the basic need of strengthening health systems. Therefore, for developing countries it is imperative that WHO is effectively retooled to act as the leading and coordinating authority on global health with adequate legal powers, as well as institutional and financial capacities to do so without undue influence from donor countries and entities that have interests in the private sector. This would enable WHO to ensure that the interests of all countries are fairly addressed in its normative and operational activities. Such a transformation of WHO would require action both within and outside the organization. The paper proposes some suggestions in this regard.

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