At the high-level meeting of the United Nations General Assembly on 22 September 2008, the ‘Political declaration on Africa’s development needs’ was adopted by the Member States, through which they committed to reinvigorate and strengthen a global partnership of equals based on common values, mutual accountability, shared responsibility and the determination to collectively act to mobilize the resources, including human, financial and technological, required to end poverty, hunger and underdevelopment in Africa, with the explicit objective of turning existing commitments into concrete actions, and strengthening support for the implementation of the New Partnership for Africa’s Development, which is Africa’s overarching framework for socio-economic sustainable development in Africa, as well as for the implementation of national and sub-regional development plans and strategies.
The Political Declaration on Africa’s Special Needs underlined the importance of accelerating sustainable broad-based economic growth, including employment generation and decent work, towards a vibrant Africa, and reaffirmed the commitment to address the special needs of Africa, a continent where, despite recent considerable improvements, the full and timely achievement of the internationally agreed development goals, including the Millennium Development Goals, remains elusive. The Declaration also committed itself to supporting the consolidation of democracy in Africa and assisting African countries in their struggle for lasting peace, economic growth, poverty eradication and sustainable development.
The Non-Aligned Movement has reaffirmed the significance of the Political Declaration on Africa’s Development Needs and is committed towards the effective realization of the same. NAM stresses that the biggest challenge to be overcome towards the realisation of the Declaration is that of poverty. Eradicating poverty in Africa is the greatest global challenge facing the world today. In this context, the Movement has supported and encouraged national and regional initiatives in the field of human development, such as the first African Conference on Human Development which was held in Rabat, Morocco, in April 2007. This Conference aimed at combating poverty and vulnerability and enhancing the social and living standards of the most disadvantaged African Nations within the context of achieving the SDGs.
NAM has underlined the importance of accelerating sustainable broad-based economic growth, which is pivotal to bringing Africa into the mainstream of the global economy. At the 17th NAM Summit held in Venezuela in 2016, NAM recalled the commitment of all States to establish a monitoring mechanism to follow up on all commitments related to the development of Africa as contained in the political declaration on “Africa’s development needs” and stressed that all commitments to and by Africa should be effectively implemented and given appropriate follow-up by the international community and Africa itself. NAM also underscored the urgency of addressing the special needs of Africa based on a partnership among equals.
NAM firmly believes that since Africa lags behind in implementation of global development goals, as compared to other regions of the world, special attention should be given to the continent. NAM has also called for the full and timely implementation of all commitments made.
NAM has affirmed that Official Development Assistance remains the main source of international financing for development for many developing countries and that it is essential as a catalyst for development, facilitating the achievement of national development objectives, including the unfinished business of the Millennium Development Goals, the sustainable development goals and the 2030 Agenda in accordance with paragraph 246 of the outcome document of the United Nations Conference on Sustainable Development.
NAM thus believes that the development goals should be coherent with and integrated into the United Nations development agenda, thus contributing to the achievement of sustainable development and serving as a driver for implementation and mainstreaming of sustainable development in the United Nations system as a whole. The development of these goals should not divert focus or effort from the achievement of the Millennium Development Goals. NAM has also stressed the need to strengthen cooperation with African countries through North-South cooperation, triangular cooperation and South-South Cooperation, especially in agriculture, education, health and environment as well as the exchange of experiences and know-how in all these sectors.
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