United Nations


General Assembly

Distr. GENERAL  

23 December 1994


                                              94th plenary meeting
                                              23 December 1994
            49/142. United Nations New Agenda for the Development of Africa in
                    the 1990s
      The General Assembly,
      Recalling its resolutions 45/200 and 45/253 of 21 December 1990,
dealing, respectively, with commodities and programme planning, in which the
economic recovery and development of Africa were spelt out as one of the five
overall priorities in the medium-term plan for the period 1992-1997,
      Reaffirming its resolution 46/151 of 18 December 1991, the annex to
which contains the United Nations New Agenda for the Development of Africa in
the 1990s,
      Reaffirming also its resolution 48/214 of 23 December 1993 on the United
Nations New Agenda for the Development of Africa in the 1990s,
      Mindful of the need for African countries to diversify their economies,
particularly their primary commodities, with a view to modernizing African
production, distribution and marketing systems, enhancing productivity and
stabilizing and increasing African export earnings in the face of the
persistent instability of the prices of most primary commodities, the
continuous deterioration in Africa's terms of trade, the heavy burden of debt
and debt service and the serious constraints they pose for African economies,
      Noting with concern the continuous economic difficulties that African
States encounter in their efforts to participate beneficially in world trade
and the dependency of many countries, particularly in Africa, on a limited
number of commodities for their export earnings,
      Recognizing the need for further progress in diversifying the economies
of those countries in view, in particular, of the conclusion of the
negotiations of the Uruguay Round and the need for the international community
to assist the efforts of the African countries to diversify their economies in
order to benefit fully from the implementation of the Uruguay Round,
      Stressing the need to facilitate access to bilateral and multilateral
financing and technical cooperation, including South-South cooperation, for
diversification projects in African countries, in particular the least
developed among them,
      Acknowledging the positive impact of substantive official development
assistance transfers to Africa,
      Recognizing the important role the private sector initiative has to play
in identifying and launching sustainable diversification projects and
programme implementation,
      Reaffirming the commitment on resource flows, including private direct
investment, as contained in paragraphs 29 and 30 of the New Agenda, and the
important role they play for sustainable diversification projects,
      Noting the operations of the second account of the Common Fund for
Commodities, and noting also recent initiatives and discussion thereof to
enable the activation of part of the resources of the first account with a
view to supporting action aimed at developing the commodity market,
      Bearing in mind the ongoing negotiations on the replenishment of the
African Development Fund existing within the African Development Bank,
      Noting that the development support of the Common Fund for Commodities
accords highest priority to projects of the least developed and small
producer/exporter countries,
      Mindful of the need for African countries to increase and mobilize
internal resources for sustainable development through, inter alia, policies
for the promotion of domestic savings, improved and accessible banking
facilities and further improvements in traditional practices of capital
formation at local levels,
      Taking note of the report of the Food and Agriculture Organization of
the United Nations on the need for and feasibility of the establishment of a
diversification fund for Africa's commodities and on issues of diversification
of African economies, specifically, the establishment of a diversification
fund for Africa's commodities,
      1.    Reaffirms the high priority attached, in the medium-term plan for
the period 1992-1997, to Africa's economic recovery and development, including
the effective implementation of the United Nations New Agenda for the
Development of Africa in the 1990s as described in programme 45;
      2.    Urges all organs, organizations and programmes of the United
Nations system to incorporate the priorities of the New Agenda in their
mandates, to allocate sufficient resources for their operation and to improve
further the use of available resources;
      3.    Recommends that, as part of capacity-building assistance,
interested African countries be assisted in monitoring the impact of the work
being undertaken in the context of the implementation of the New Agenda and in
ensuring the participation of community-based groups, particularly women;
      4.    Renews its call upon the international community to pursue
vigorously its responsibilities and commitments under the New Agenda in order
to provide full and tangible support to African efforts;
      5.    Urges the multilateral financial institutions, recipient countries
and donor countries, within the conceptual framework and design and
implementation of structural adjustment policies in Africa, to pay special
attention to eradicating poverty and addressing the social impact of these
policies, while focusing on public investment, fiscal reform, reform of public
enterprises, export expansion and efficient public administration;
      6.    Affirms the need for further efforts to promote the
diversification of African economies;
      7.    Stresses the need to fill gaps that may exist in the funding
available for diversification of related activities in Africa;
      8.    Urges the international community to increase financial resource
flows to Africa, as these are crucial in order to regenerate the growth and
sustainable development of the African economies, to provide effective support
to the political and economic reforms in which many African countries are now
engaged and to help cushion adverse social consequences;
      9.    Reaffirms the recommendations stipulated in paragraphs 23 to 28 of
the New Agenda concerning Africa's debt problem, and in that context invites
the international community to address Africa's external debt crisis and the
debt problems of African countries and to continue to give serious
consideration to the proposal for the convening of an international conference
on Africa's external indebtedness;
      10.   Urges States that have reaffirmed their commitment to reach the
agreed international targets of devoting 0.7 per cent of gross national
product to official development assistance and 0.15 per cent to least
developed countries to implement as soon as possible the undertakings they
have made in that regard, and urges all States to provide a better environment
for the realization of the suggested estimate of the need to achieve an
average 4 per cent real growth in annual financial resource flows to Africa,
as outlined in paragraph 29 of the New Agenda;
      11.   Recognizes the urgent need to respond to the specific economic
problems of African States in their efforts to diversify their economies and
primary commodities, and the difficulty they encounter in utilizing the
financial mechanisms already existing within international organizations;
      12.   Invites State participants in the African Development Fund
existing within the African Development Bank to pay particular attention to
the diversification of African commodities with a view to accelerating this
process, and invites them to consider urgently making an initial adequate
special contribution to finance the preparatory phase of commodity
diversification projects and programmes in African countries;
      13.   Invites the relevant multilateral institutions to accord high
priority to assistance for commodity diversification in Africa, in particular
for the preparatory phase of such projects, taking into account the urgency of
the matter;
      14.   Urges developed countries to continue to support the commodity
diversification efforts of African countries, inter alia, by providing
technical and financial assistance for the preparatory phase of their
commodity diversification programmes;
      15.   Reiterates its encouragement to African countries to establish
national diversification councils in conformity with General Assembly
resolution 48/214, related to the establishment of new funding arrangements
for diversification of Africa's commodities;
      16.   Requests the Secretary-General to ensure that the Inter-agency
Task Force for the Implementation of the United Nations New Agenda for the
Development of Africa in the 1990s accords high priority to the consideration
of the diversification of African economies and to the coordination of
activities of the relevant organizations and programmes of the United Nations
system in this field, and invites the Task Force to make available advisory
services to the African Development Bank on questions related to the
diversification of Africa's commodities;
      17.   Invites the Governing Body of the Common Fund for Commodities,
when considering the future activities of the Fund:
      (a)   To take into account the special needs of the African countries
that are highly dependent on a narrow range of commodities for their export
earnings in its support of commodity development;
      (b)   To consider support measures, including feasibility studies, aimed
at diversifying their export sector;
      (c)   To consider practical ways and adequate means of allowing and
facilitating access to financing of preparatory studies for diversification
projects in Africa, including through regional and subregional entities;
      18.   Invites the African Development Bank group to elaborate a set of
criteria for the identification of diversification projects and to extend any
other assistance as appropriate;
      19.   Invites donor countries to continue to emphasize, in their
bilateral assistance programmes, the diversification of African economies,
particularly commodities;
      20.   Urges African countries to continue their efforts to improve the
investment climate, and urges donor countries to support those efforts by,
inter alia, providing increased assistance to human resource development and
to the rehabilitation and development of social and economic infrastructure;
      21.   Requests the Secretary-General to submit a report on the
implementation of the present resolution to the General Assembly at its
fiftieth session;
      22.   Decides to include in the provisional agenda of its fiftieth
session an item entitled "Implementation of the United Nations New Agenda for
the Development of Africa in the 1990s".