Speaking Points for Achim Steiner, UNEP Executive Director at the High-Level UN Conference on South-South Cooperation 1 - 3 December 2009
Nairobi, 3 December 2009 - Hon Wycliffe OPARANYA: President of the High-level Conference on South-South Cooperation
Ms. Amat Al Alim ALSOSWA: UNDP Assistant Administrator and Director UNDP Regional Bureau for Arab States
H. E. Abdullah ALSAIDI; Permanent Representative of Yemen to UN and Co-Facilitator of the High-Level UN Conference on South-South Cooperation
H.E. Dr. Gunnar PALSSON: Permanent Representative of Iceland to UN and Co-Facilitator of the High-Level UN Conference on South-South Cooperation
H. E. Nassir Abdulaziz AL-NASSER, President of the UN High-Level Committee on South-South Cooperation and Permanent Representative of Qatar to the UN.
Mr. Yiping ZHOU; Director, UNDP Special Unit for South-South Cooperation
Ladies and gentlemen,
It is with great pleasures that I address you at the end of this important meeting and with this serious and significant outcome document before you.
South-South cooperation is now a very vibrant and tangible fact of modern life, especially in terms of trade and increasingly in terms of economic integration.
Africa's trade with the world's four largest emerging markets, namely Brazil, Russia, India and China (BRIC countries), has grown from $20.3bn in 2001 to about $162bn in 2008,
New forums accelerating these trends and cementing south-south ties are mushrooming as are trends towards common markets; common currencies and bilateral agreements
- The Korea-Africa Forum; The Forum on China- Africa Cooperation
- in Southeast Asia, there will be a free trade area by January next year.
- in the Middle East, the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) is looking at the idea of a common currency.
- and Latin America is moving towards the creation of a global South Bank.
The UN system is responding to these rapid shifts in geo-political patterns, not least in supporting and fostering knowledge; best practises and technological exchange.