United Nations

A/RES/51/167


General Assembly

Distr. GENERAL  

26 February 1997

ORIGINAL:
ENGLISH



Fifty-first session
Agenda item 94 (c)


                  RESOLUTION ADOPTED BY THE GENERAL ASSEMBLY

              [on the report of the Second Committee (A/51/602)]


               51/167.     International trade and development

      The General Assembly,

      Recalling its resolutions 50/95 and 50/98 of 20 December 1995, as
well as relevant international agreements concerning trade, economic
growth, development and interrelated issues,

      Emphasizing the importance of an open, rule-based, equitable,
secure, non-discriminatory, transparent and predictable multilateral
trading system,

      Emphasizing also that a favourable and conducive international
economic and financial environment and a positive investment climate
are necessary for the economic growth of the world economy, including
the creation of employment, in particular for the growth and
development of the developing countries, and emphasizing further that
each country is responsible for its own economic policies for
sustainable development,

      Noting with satisfaction the highly successful outcome of the
ninth session of the United Nations Conference on Trade and
Development, held at Midrand, South Africa, from 27 April to 11 May
1996, and the strengthened spirit of genuine partnership and
solidarity that emerged therefrom,

      Expressing its deep gratitude to the Government and the people of
South Africa for the hospitality extended to the participants in the
ninth session of the United Nations Conference on Trade and
Development,

      Welcoming with appreciation the generous offer made by the
Government and the people of Thailand to host the tenth session of the
United Nations Conference on Trade and Development in the year 2000,

      Expressing its appreciation to the Government and the people of
Singapore for hosting the inaugural Ministerial Conference of the
World Trade Organization,

                                       I

      1.    Endorses the outcome of the ninth session of the United
Nations Conference on Trade and Development, held at Midrand, South
Africa, in April and May 1996, in particular the document entitled "A
Partnership for Growth and Development", 1/ which builds upon various
related agreements and conferences, and expresses its political will
and responsibility with respect to implementing the agreed
commitments;

      2.    Takes note of the report of the Trade and Development Board
on its forty-third session; 2/

      3.    Welcomes the fact that the United Nations Conference on
Trade and Development, as part of the United Nations system and a
contributor to its revitalization, has adopted far-reaching reforms,
as embodied in the Midrand Declaration and the document entitled "A
Partnership for Growth and Development", 1/ adopted by consensus at the
ninth session of the Conference, which encompass its programme of
work, its intergovernmental machinery and the reform of its
secretariat, including its complementarity with the World Trade
Organization, inter alia, by making its analysis of trade and
development available to the World Trade Organization, and its
cooperation with the United Nations Industrial Development
Organization and relevant organizations, thus adapting itself to new
economic and institutional modalities created by the process of
globalization, the conclusion of the Uruguay Round of multilateral
trade negotiations agreements 3/ and the creation of the World
Trade Organization;

      4.    Also welcomes the importance attached by the United Nations
Conference on Trade and Development at its ninth session to building a
lasting partnership for development between non-governmental actors
and the Conference and the initiative taken by the Secretary-General
of the United Nations Conference on Trade and Development to hold
meetings with relevant actors;

      5.    Recognizes the role of the United Nations Conference on
Trade and Development as the focal point within the United Nations for
the integrated treatment of development and interrelated issues in the
areas of trade, finance, technology, investment and sustainable
development;

      6.    Also recognizes that the United Nations Conference on Trade
and Development, having a comparative advantage in tackling trade-
related development issues, should continue to facilitate the
integration of developing countries and countries with economies in
transition into the international trading system, in a complementary
manner with the World Trade Organization, and to promote development
through trade and investment in cooperation and coordination with the
International Trade Centre, relevant institutions of the United
Nations system and other international organizations;

      7.    Invites, in this context, the United Nations Conference on
Trade and Development to continue, inter alia, to follow developments
in the international trading system, in particular their implications
for developing countries, and to identify new opportunities arising
from the implementation of the Uruguay Round agreements;

      8.    Decides, in this context, that the United Nations Conference
on Trade and Development should implement its programme of work with a
focus on the issues of globalization and development, international
trade in goods and services and commodity matters, investment,
enterprise development and technology, services infrastructure for
development and trade efficiency;

      9.    Invites the President of the United Nations Conference on
Trade and Development at its ninth session to consider convening a
special high-level review meeting two years prior to the tenth session
of the Conference;

                                      II

      10.   Stresses the urgent need to continue trade liberalization in
developed and developing countries, including liberalization through a
substantial reduction of tariff and other barriers to trade, in
particular non-tariff barriers, and the elimination of discriminatory
and protectionist practices in international trade relations, which
will have the effect of improving access for the exports of developing
countries, enhancing the competitiveness of their domestic industries
and facilitating structural adjustment among developed economies;

      11.   Also stresses the need for the full integration of economies
in transition, as well as other countries, into the world economy, in
particular through improved market access for their exports in
accordance with the multilateral trading agreements, and recognizes in
this respect the importance of open regional economic integration of
interested economies in transition among themselves, as well as with
developed and developing countries, in creating new possibilities for
expanding trade and investment;

      12.   Recognizes that the World Trade Organization provides the
framework for an open, rule-based, equitable, secure, non-
discriminatory, transparent and predictable multilateral trading
system, and stresses that all members of the World Trade Organization
should implement their commitments in respect of the Uruguay Round
agreements in a full, timely, faithful and continuous manner and that
all provisions of the Final Act Embodying the Results of the Uruguay
Round of Multilateral Trade Negotiations 3/ should be effectively
applied, so as to maximize economic growth and the developmental
benefits thereof for all, taking into account specific difficulties
and interests of developing countries;

      13.   Urges Governments and concerned organizations to implement
fully and expeditiously the Ministerial Decision on Measures in Favour
of the Least Developed Countries 3/ and to apply effectively the
Ministerial Decision on Measures Concerning the Possible Negative
Effects of the Reform Programme on Least Developed and Net Food-
importing Developing Countries, 3/ as well as the recommendations
adopted at the Mid-term Global Review of the Implementation of the
Programme of Action for the Least Developed Countries for the 1990s
and at the ninth session of the United Nations Conference on Trade and
Development, as they relate to trade and trade-related issues of the
least developed countries;

      14.   Emphasizes the importance of the strengthening of, and the
attaining of greater universality by, the international trading
system, welcomes the process directed towards accession to the World
Trade Organization of developing countries and countries with
economies in transition, and emphasizes the necessity for World Trade
Organization member Governments and relevant international
organizations to assist non-World Trade Organization members so as to
facilitate their efforts with respect to accession in an expeditious
manner on the basis of World Trade Organization rights and obligations
and for the United Nations Conference on Trade and Development to
provide technical assistance, thereby contributing to their rapid and
full integration into the multilateral trading system;

      15.   Also emphasizes the importance of the inaugural Ministerial
Conference of the World Trade Organization, to be held at Singapore in
December 1996, in regard to reviewing the implementation of the
Uruguay Round agreements and their built-in agenda, stressing that the
pursuit of that agenda, as well as the international community's
handling of new issues affecting the conduct of international trade
relations, should be carried out in a balanced manner which takes into
account the concerns of all countries, including developing countries;

      16.   Further emphasizes that the dispute settlement mechanism of
the World Trade Organization is a key element with regard to the
integrity and credibility of the multilateral trading system and the
full realization of the benefits anticipated from the conclusion of
the Uruguay Round;

      17.   Deplores any attempt to bypass or undermine multilaterally
agreed procedures on the conduct of international trading by resorting
to unilateral actions over and above those agreed in the Uruguay
Round, and affirms that environmental and social concerns should not
be used for protectionist purposes;

      18.   Emphasizes the need for a balanced and integrated approach
to environment, trade and development issues; 

      19.   Reaffirms that Governments should have as their objective to
ensure that trade and environmental policies are mutually supportive
so as to achieve sustainable development and that, in doing so, their
environmental policies and measures with a potential trade impact
should not be used for protectionist purposes, and reaffirms also that
positive measures such as market access, capacity-building, improved
access to finance and access to transfer of technology, taking into
account the relationship between trade-related agreements and
technology, are effective instruments in assisting developing
countries to meet multilaterally agreed targets, while noting that
trade measures can, in certain cases, play a role in achieving the
objectives of multilateral trade agreements, while safeguarding a non-
discriminatory and equitable multilateral trading system;

                                      III

      20.   Recognizes the important progress made in understanding the
relationship between trade and environment in the Committee on Trade
and Environment of the World Trade Organization, as well as in the
United Nations Conference on Trade and Development, and in the
Commission on Sustainable Development, including the recommendations
made at its fourth session, and requests the Conference to continue
its work on trade, environment and development, in cooperation with
relevant international organizations including the Commission on
Sustainable Development, the United Nations Environment Programme, the
Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development, regional
organizations and the World Trade Organization;

      21.   Requests the United Nations Conference on Trade and
Development to continue its special role in promoting the integration
of trade, environment and development, in accordance with paragraph 27
of resolution 50/95, by examining trade and environment issues from a
development perspective, in close cooperation with the United Nations
Environment Programme and the World Trade Organization and as task
manager for the Commission on Sustainable Development;

      22.   Stresses the role of the United Nations Conference on Trade
and Development in the context of the forthcoming special session of
the General Assembly for the purpose of an overall review and
appraisal of the implementation of Agenda 21;

      23.   Requests the United Nations Conference on Trade and
Development, on the basis of the outcome of its ninth session, to
identify and analyse the implications for development of issues
relevant to investment, taking into account the interests of
developing countries and bearing in mind the work undertaken by other
organizations;

      24.   Reaffirms the need to give priority to the problems facing
the least developed countries, and reaffirms in particular that
actions, as appropriate, should be taken to assist the least developed
countries to maximize the potential opportunities and minimize
possible difficulties arising from the Uruguay Round agreements;

      25.   Requests Governments, organs, organizations and bodies of
the United Nations system and intergovernmental and non-governmental
organizations to take concrete measures to implement fully and as a
matter of urgency the United Nations New Agenda for the Development of
Africa in the 1990s, 4/ including the measures and recommendations
agreed upon at its mid-term review, especially those related to trade
and development;

      26.   Invites the United Nations Conference on Trade and
Development, the World Bank and the United Nations Development
Programme to improve collaboration between the Conference's country-
level programmes for least developed countries and the overall
macroeconomic and sectoral policy dialogue in respect of those
countries at the World Bank Consultative Group and United Nations
Development Programme Round Tables, bearing in mind General Assembly
resolution 50/120 of 20 December 1995;

      27.   Stresses the need to give special attention, within the
context of international cooperation on trade and development issues,
to the implementation of the many international development
commitments geared to meeting the special development needs and
problems of small island developing States and of landlocked
developing States, as well as to recognize that developing countries
which provide transit services need adequate support in maintaining
and improving their transit infrastructure;

      28.   Invites preference-giving countries to continue to improve
and renew their Generalized System of Preferences schemes in keeping
with the post-Uruguay Round trading system and with the objective of
integrating developing countries, especially least developed
countries, into the international trading system, and stresses that
ways and means should be found to ensure more effective utilization of
Generalized System of Preferences schemes, particularly by least
developed countries;

      29.   Notes the concern among the beneficiaries that the
enlargement of the scope of the Generalized System of Preferences by
linking eligibility to non-trade considerations may detract value from
its original principles, namely, non-discrimination, universality,
burden sharing and non-reciprocity;

      30.   Stresses that Governments, as well as international
organizations, should extend technical assistance to developing
countries to enable them to participate more effectively in the
international trading system;

      31.   Encourages the United Nations Conference on Trade and
Development to further promote South-South cooperation, including
triangular cooperation, recalling the results of the Intergovernmental
Meeting of Experts on South-South Cooperation, held in New York from
31 July to 4 August 1995, and the outcome of the ninth session of the
Conference;

      32.   Notes that the forthcoming South-South conference on
finance, trade and investment, to be held at San Jose', Costa Rica,
will provide an opportunity for developing countries to advance
initiatives related to the document entitled "A Partnership for Growth
and Development", and invites the international community to support
the initiative;

      33.   Requests the Secretary-General of the United Nations
Conference on Trade and Development, through the Secretary-General of
the United Nations, to submit a proposal on savings resulting from
improved overall cost-effectiveness achieved pursuant to the ninth
session of the Conference, including the restructuring of the
intergovernmental machinery and reform of the secretariat, and to
submit a proposal on how to reallocate a part of the savings in the
1998-1999 budget cycle, with a view to strengthening the Conference's
capabilities in priority areas, including, inter alia, in technical
cooperation.

                                                          86th plenary meeting
                                                              16 December 1996


                                     Notes

1/    See A/51/308.

2/    A/51/15 (vol. II); see Official Records of the General Assembly,
Fifty-first Session, Supplement No. 15.

3/    See Legal Instruments Embodying the Results of the Uruguay Round
of Multilateral Trade Negotiations, done at Marrakesh on 15 April 1994
(GATT secretariat publication, Sales No. GATT/1994-7).

4/    Resolution 46/151, annex, sect. II.

 

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Date last posted: 10 January 2000 10:55:20
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