Mr. Suescum presented a report on debt sustainability. “Rising interest rates and falling commodity price rates suggest an increased risk of sovereign debt problems in the future.” The international community agreed to handle these problems collectively with tighter financial regulations while promoting sustained economic growth and addressing the root causes of underdevelopment in less-developed countries. There was general agreement that the trading systems should focus on the Sustainable Development Goals’ realization.
Mr. Valles spoke next, noting that SDGs are based around trade in many regards. World trade grew 3.2% last year, will grow 3.8% this year, and perhaps 4.8% next year. Most of the growth in 2014 came from Asia, Latin America, and the Caribbean. The 20 largest exporters represented 71% of world exports, indicating a trade inequality that requires policy attention. It is important to “mitigate the risks of trade adjustment mechanisms, especially for the poor.”
Mr. Kim’s report discussed the effect of unilateral economic measures on developing countries. These sanctions have an adverse impact on developing countries, and that the number of sanctions has increased in recent years. This has had some severe consequences, affecting “human rights, public welfare”, and countries’ “long term growth prospects.”
South Africa, on behalf of the Group of 77 and China, echoed by Jamaica, AOSIS, and the Group of Least Developed Countries, believes the international trade system should favor developing countries. It is important to eliminate all trade distorting measures.
Ecuador and Zambia, speaking on behalf of the ECLAC and GLLDC, respectively, cited the need for countries to fulfill the pledges they made to send aid to the least developed countries as their stake in the international market has “hovered around 1%” for 40 years. The European Union, Canada, Australia, and New Zealand highlighted their commitment to combatting climate change.
Meeting: Second Committee, 19th Session
Date/Location: Monday, October 26, 2015; 15:00-18:00, Conference Room 2
Speakers: Alfredo Suescum, Vice-President of the Trade and Development Board; Guillermo Valles, Director of the International Trade in Goods, Services and Commodities Division, UNCTAD; Alexander Trepelkov, Director, Financing for Development Office, UN-DESA; Dusan Zivkovic, Debt and Development Finance Branch, Division on Globalization and Development Strategies of UNCTAD; Namsuk Kim, Development Policy and Analysis Division, Department of Economic and Social Affairs; H.E. Mr. Ramlan Bin Ibrahim, Malaysia; Mr. Thulani Nyembe, South Africa; H.E. Mr. Ahmed Sareer, Maldives; H.E. Dr. Mwaba Patricia Kasese-Bota, Zambia; H.E. Mr. Gerard Van Bohemen; Mr. Adebayo Babajide, European Union; Mr. Fred Sarufa, Papua New Guinea; H.E. Mr. Diego Morejón Pazmiño, Ecuador; H.E. Mr. Abulkalam Abdul Momen, Bangladesh; H.E. Mr. E. Courtenay Rattray, Jamaica; Ms. Caralyn Schwalger, New Zealand
Written by: WIT Representative Alex Margolick