By Emin Avundukluoglu
ANTALYA, Turkey (AA) – The UN's High Representative for Least Developed Countries (LDCs) said Friday other states should emulate Turkey’s support for poorer nations.
Gyan Chandra Acharya, addressing a joint news conference in Antalya, spoke of his sincere appreciation to Turkey for taking consistent leadership in highlighting LDCs at the global level.
Speaking after the first session of a review into the 2011 Istanbul Program of Action for Least Developed Countries, Acharya said: "If every country fulfills the commitments … to LDCs, then we will have a lot of progress."
Acharya also said that LDCs had seen significant progress and were a major human and natural-resource potential for the world, "but more needs to be done to support them".
"We are looking forward in terms of official development assistance but more support also for trade, capacity building, more support for investment promotion," Acharya added.
Speaking at the same news conference, Helen Clark, administrator of the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP), said that they have seen significant progress since the Istanbul program in 2011.
"A growing number of countries are being considered for graduation from LDC lists. But there is a lot of work to do," the former New Zealand premier said.
Clark said that Turkey had given very strong leadership to the agenda pursued by the Istanbul Program and said a strong message should be clearly given: "No-one should be left behind, no country, no person."
The three-day conference in Turkey's southern resort is a comprehensive review of how the 2011 Istanbul Program of Action has been implemented.
That program, passed at the Fourth UN Conference on Least Developed Countries, charts out the international community’s strategy for sustainable development through to 2021, with a strong focus on developing LDCs’ productive capacities.
Friday’s conference is being co-organized by the United Nations Population Fund and the UN Office of the High Representative for Least Developed Countries.
It aims at creating sustainable growth in a total of 48 countries which account for 12 percent of the world's population.
Topics to be covered include: production capacity; agriculture; food security and rural development; fiscal resources; trade; economic diversification; and human and social development.