FOR ECONOMIC COOPERATION AND DEVELOPMENT (OECD)
Mr. Seiichi Kondo
of the Organization
for the Economic
Cooperation and Development
on Financing for Development
1. I welcome this opportunity to speak to you today, because this conference
focuses on one of the most important issues for the new millennium: financing
for development throughout the world. Certainly money will be needed to
turn the tide against poverty and achieve the goals of the Millennium Declaration,
but good policies and sound institutions are equally important. This conference
has the potential to play a major role in achieving these goals, by providing
a springboard for effective initiatives by all major players, or stakeholders,
to tackle the very real problems of development.
2. The Monterrey consensus document may not provide attention-grabbing
headlines, but it nevertheless provides a vital platform for progress for
many reasons: it provides a shared view of the responsibility and mutual
accountability of all countries -- developed and developing alike -to work
to end poverty and achieve economic, social and environmental progress.
It provides important recognition of the need for developing countries
to take their destiny into their own hands, for example, as NEPAD is doing.
This is essential for development to take off in any country. It also recognizes
the importance of mobilizing the private sector as a source of domestic
and international financing. At the same time, this engagement of the developing
countries throws out a challenge to the developed world: to provide support
for economic reform, capacity building, increasing aid flows and making
them more effective, and removing barriers to market-based growth. This
challenge must be met.
3. The OECD very much welcomes and is committed to building upon this
shared development paradigm. Our Convention calls upon the OECD to "promote
policies designed to contribute to sound economic expansion in Member as
well as non-member countries in the process of economic development." Given
increased global interdependence, this priority is even more vital today.
OECD values -- commitments to democratic, market-based economies with good
governance, and open, rule-based, predictable and non-discriminatory trading
and financial systems -- are essential to economic development not only
for OECD countries, but globally.
4. But we all recognise that achieving these goals will not be easy.
5. What needs to be done, then? As I see it, there is potentially enough
capital, goods, knowledge and technology for the development of the entire
world. Our challenge is to overcome barriers and impediments to mobilising
them for developing countries in sufficient volumes needed to overcome
persistent poverty. I would cite four particular needs:
To build capacity in the developing world to mobilise and assemble
these factors efficiently. This requires not only the meeting of
basic human needs, such as food, water, shelter, and education. But it
also calls for the development of entrepreneurial skills, and good governance,
including sound institutions and markets.
Second, to remove trade distorting measures that still exist. Such
measures have negative effects that significantly exceed the value of aid
Third, to strengthen policy coherence of development-related policies.
Certainly aid and development co-operation policies are important. But
they do not and cannot operate in a vacuum. What is crucial to their effectiveness
and impact is how they link up with and support the actions and efforts
of other policy communities in both developed and developing countries.
Some figures help to illustrate this point: Official development assistance
in the year 2000 totalled 50 billion US dollars. Developing countries'
cumulative benefits from more open trade (from removal of barriers to access
and from greater productivity) if realised; are estimated in the order
of 500 billion. And foreign direct investment to the developing countries
totalled 120 billion in 2000. If the development, trade and investment
policy communities were able to better link up their policies in mutually
reinforcing ways, the contribution to development and to meeting the development
goals of the Millennium Declaration would be vastly superior.
Fourth, to enhance partnerships among all stakeholders -- states,
business, civil society and international organisations -- to ensure that
we can move forward in mutually accountable ways.
6. The OECD is committed to doing its part to address these issues
and contribute to the achievement of the MDGs. These issues will be major
subjects of discussion at the OECD's annual Ministerial meeting in May,
where we expect to set the broad lines of OECD's development agenda for
the years to come. Key actions to be addressed include strengthening the
development dimension of OECD work, and showing how we will contribute
to capacity building, improvements in OECD countries' own development-related
policies, overall policy coherence for development, and the initiation
of mutually accountable approaches to working in partnership. Let
me be more specific about five such OECD actions for development:
Our Development Assistance Committee provides a forum for the world's major
bilateral aid donors to address issues related to the need for increased
aid volumes, quality and effectiveness. The DAC is currently working to
harmonise donor practices and ensure implementation of its Recommendation
on Untying of ODA to the Least-Developed Countries. The DAC has also
recently issued guidelines on poverty reduction, strengthening trade capacity,
sustainable development and helping to prevent violent conflict.
We are committed to the objective of sustainable development. We
are working to develop indicators to measure progress in the economic,
social and environmental dimensions of sustainable development and to incorporate
them into the peer reviews conducted in OECD. We intend to make a major
contribution to Johannesburg, through a report that builds upon an intensive,
three- year programme of OECD work in this area.
We have begun to strengthen multidisciplinary work on the interlinkages
between trade, agriculture, investment, environment and development policies,
including the launching of a project on policy coherence for development.
OECD analysis and policy dialogue can help increase understanding of the
trade-offs involved and synergies that can be achieved through a more coherent
approach to sectoral policies that have impacts on both developed and developing
We are expanding our work to support capacity building for trade
and more broadly to help developing countries to build the institutional
and market infrastructure through policies and conditions necessary to
achieve sustained growth. We also are working to create an "International
Taxation Dialogue", in co-operation with the World Bank and IMF, and we
would welcome UN involvement in this initiative to support international
cooperation and build capacity on tax matters.
7. But the OECD does not pretend to have all the answers. We have
much to gain and to learn by listening to all of you throughout this very
rich programme of events at Monterrey. And we look forward to continuing
and strengthening the dialogue so that we may all learn from each other
about how to ensure that globalisation can be of benefit to us all.
We have strengthened policy dialogue with some 70 non-OECD countries,
for example, through ongoing regional Roundtables on corporate governance;
regional networks to fight against corruption, building on the OECD's Anti-Bribery
Convention; and Global Forums on such issues as competition, investment,
trade, taxation and sustainable development.
Statements at the Conference