His Excellency François-Xavier Ngoubeyou
First of all, I would like to convey to President Vicente Fox, his people and all the participants in this conference cordial greetings from His Excellency Mr. Paul Biya, President of the Republic of Cameroon, whom I have the honour of representing here, and the wishes for success that he has made for this very important meeting.
My delegation pays tribute to the spirit of Monterrey that you have managed to breathe into our debates. We would like to take this opportunity to congratulate all those who have contributed to the implementation of the Monterrey Consensus. In this respect we support the declaration made by the President of the Group of 77 and China. At the same time, we welcome the commitments made by the leaders of international economic and financial institutions.
Eighteen months ago, the Heads of State and Government adopted the Millennium Declaration, which aims at the eradication of poverty, sustainable development, promotion of peace and international security. In this Declaration, they made a commitment to pay particular attention to the specific needs of Africa. For their part, African leaders have sized up the challenges that face their continent. They designed and adopted the New Partnership for Africa’s Development (NEPAD), which is both a strategy and plan of action for increasing economic growth and reducing poverty along the lines of the Millennium Declaration and promoting the integration of African in the world economy.
Cameroon, like other countries, expects that this conference will provide a clear and constructive definition of the ways and means of mobilizing the resources necessary for implementing the objectives of the Millennium Summit.
At this point in my statement, the essential question is whether we have met this expectation. There are various ways of assessing this. But Cameroon believes that there are some positive elements that should be pointed out. First of all, there is the Monterrey consensus that follows up on the Millennium Declaration. Then there are the decisions announced by the countries of the European Union, the United States and Canada in favour of increasing official development assistance. Finally, there is the agenda of international economic and financial organizations, in particular the World Bank, the International Monetary Fund and the World Trade Organization.
Cameroon associates itself with the Monterrey Consensus. Beyond the announcements, we expect specific measures that will allow Africa to implement NEPAD successfully. These measures involve in particular debt cancellation, an increase in official development assistance to rapidly reach the objective of 0.7 percent of gross national product and questions related to international trade such as market access, the development of trade capacities and the elimination of agricultural subsidies. In other words, we must remain committed as one of the themes of our programme has stated.
* The text of this statement has been transcribed from audio recordings as the original was not submitted to the Secretariat.