Discussion: Dealing with Shocks and Ensuring Resilience to Meet Current and Emerging Challenges

The international community has an invaluable role to play and a responsibility to live up to its commitments. The possibility of achieving the Millennium Development Goals by 2015 largely depends on building stronger global partnerships. Goal 8 of the Millennium Development Goals embodies the global partnership for development in the fight against poverty and hunger, and in support of human development and good governance. Donor countries and the private sector have committed to support the efforts of developing countries through more ODA, fairer trade, debt relief and improved access to essential medicines and technology.

While important progress has been achieved in several areas significant gaps remain in the delivery of the commitments made by member states. At the request of the UN Secretary General, the MDG Gap Task Force prepared a report – Delivering on the Global Partnership for Achieving the MDGs – aimed to track international commitments on aid, trade, debt and to follow progress on access to essential medicines and technology. It identifies the areas where additional actions still need to be taken.

Discussion Phase 1

Large debt relief to the Heavily Indebted Poor Countries exemplifies the contribution that a strong partnership for development can make to increase investments for human development. In other areas, however, there is an urgent need to strengthen the global partnership for development by closing some of the remaining gaps. In particular:

  1. Increasing ODA by 18 billion dollars a year in order to meet the 2010 target set at the G-8 Summit in Gleneagles in 2005.
  2. Re-commencing trade negotiations immediately to reverse the damage made by their recent collapse on the promise to give a development focus to trade negotiations
  3. Improving access to essential quality medicines, especially in the public sector, to make them available to the poor
  4. Accelerating the diffusion of new technologies for development and increase investment in infrastructure, especially electricity

Questions/Issues:

  1. What should be done to close these gaps? In the coming weeks we would like to stimulate debate on what can be done to move the international community to live up to their commitments.
  2. The first focus is on aid. Over the past two years aid (after correcting for inflation) decreased, while at the same time demands for additional assistance have been increasing in order to allow countries to address new challenges, including support to overcome the food crisis and meet the climate change challenges. What more can be done to convince the donor community to accelerate their follow through on commitments?
  3. How can aid be made more effective to support achievement of the MDGs?
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