Mr. Wu Hongbo Under-Secretary-General for Economic and Social Affairs, Secretary-General for the International Conference on Small Island Developing States

Opening remarks at the meeting of the core group of Southern Partners

Dear colleagues,
Dear friends,

It is a pleasure to see all of you again. I would like to begin by thanking the governments of Mexico and Turkey for co-hosting this meeting.

This group originated from the Delhi Conference of Southern Partners, which took place exactly one year ago (on 15 April 2013). Over the past year, we have met four times, individually or in the margins of other meetings.

The informal meeting of the Core Group three weeks ago in Berlin suggested that you all wanted this group to achieve solid results and serve your desire to share and coordinate.

You have identified three distinct, but interlinked, areas of priority.

First, you would like to share your principles of cooperation and their applications. You will exchange information and analytical work on your policies and practices, in order to learn from each other.

Second, you want to develop your own narratives, your own lexicon and conceptual framework for South-South cooperation.

Third, there was a proposal to prepare joint reporting on South-South cooperation to demonstrate the impact and unique approach of South-South cooperation.

There is clearly a sense of urgency to take concrete steps in these three areas.

Let me put some practical ideas on the table.

In the first area, DESA would like to facilitate your exchange by undertaking a mapping of the principles of South-South cooperation and their applications. How to do it?  Active participation and contribution from all partners are certainly needed.  It may be helpful if each of you could nominate a point of contact at working level in your organizations to fast-track information gathering on this issue. We hope the mapping can be completed and made available to you for your next meeting, during the July high-level meeting of the DCF.

In the second area, you can engage the Southern think tanks.  While there is a demand for more expertise to undertake analytical work from each of you, we should also avoid duplication.  We also need stronger coordination, probably led by one of you.  . One DESA will participate and provide necessary support.

In the third area, I understand that Uruguay will share some ideas on some good practice on reporting South-South cooperation activities. I invite you to share any reporting on the quantity and quality of your cooperation over the past two years, if available with DESA.

I look forward to your reactions to these ideas. I hope we will have very concrete deliverables to work with at the next meeting.

Thank you.