Ministerial Conference concludes LDC5 preparatory process

The United Nations Industrial Development Organization (UNIDO) Ministerial Conference of the Least Developed Countries (LDCs) was held this week to discuss the priority areas of the next decade of action for those countries.

The event was co-organized with the Organization of African, Caribbean and Pacific States (OACPS) and the United Nations Office of the High Representative for the Least Developed Countries, Landlocked Developing Countries and Small Island Developing States (UN-OHRLLS).

Chaired by Chipoka Mulenga, Zambia's Minister of Commerce, Trade and Industry, the Conference focused on enablers for the resilient graduation of the LDCs. Gender equality, the empowerment of women and youth, climate change and COVID-19 were cross-cutting themes addressed throughout the sessions.

The Conference explored innovative cooperation mechanisms to boost the industrial potential of LDCs and "turn current challenges into opportunities," in the words of UNIDO Director General, LI Yong. 

Referring to the outcome document of LDC5, he continued that "it is imperative for the next programme of action for the LDCs to envision achievable and impactful outcomes on structural socio-economic transformation."

As a roadmap to the 5th United Nations Conference on the LDCs (LDC5), the outcomes of the Ministerial Conference will feed into the discussions of the Doha Conference, and its contributions will feature in the Doha Programme of Action.

Referring to the objectives of the DPoA, UN High Representative for the Least Developed Countries, Courtenay Rattray, said that business as usual is not an option, arguing in favour of a programmatic approach that serves the needs of LDCs. 

He said, "A programme that delivers structural transformation and strengthens resilience on a platform of sustainable growth.  Concrete deliverables that will make an impact.  Not just on the page – but in the streets, in the farms and in the factories of the world’s most vulnerable countries."

More information can be found on the UNIDO website.