United Nations Inter-Agency Task Force (IATF) on LDC Graduation Support

The United Nations Inter-Agency Task Force (IATF) on LDC Graduation Support was established by the Inter-Agency Consultative Group on LDCs in late 2017 with the goal to provide strengthened and coordinated UN system-wide support to countries preparing to graduate from the LDC category.  

Chaired by OHRLLS Acting High Representative Ms Heidi Schroderus–Fox, the Task Force  brings together UN agencies and other international and regional  organizations to support LDCs through their transition out of the category.  

Aiming to generate awareness and political support from development and trading partners for the challenges that countries face after graduation, the IATF enables a smooth and sustainable transition that will not disrupt the trajectory of graduating countries’ development.  

Upon demand by graduating countries the Task Force is activated to provide coordinate UN support to their smooth transition strategies based on their unique development needs and goals.  

The IATF is designed to be responsive to the unique needs of LDCs in the graduation pipeline and to boost collaboration between agencies, donors and graduating LDCs.  

The Terms of Reference of the IATF are available herePDFExternal link.

As a contribution to the work of the IATF, DESA developed a Guidance Note on Smooth Transition Strategy (DOC ATTACTHED). OHRLLS translated this into Portuguese (doc in portuguese also attached) thanks to the generous financial contribution of the Government of Portugal.

The recently adopted Doha Programme of Action welcomes the work of the IATF on LDC graduation, led by OHRLLS, to provide strengthened and coordinated United Nations system-wide support to the countries graduating from the category. The DPOA invites the Office to advocate for appropriate predictable and additional incentives and support measures for graduating and recently graduated countries and to mobilize additional international support for the implementation of the smooth transition strategies.

i) Addressing the loss of existing LDC-specific international support measures (ISMs);

ii) Improving the ability of graduating and graduated LDCs to access non-LDC-specific support;

iii) Preparing and implementing national smooth transition strategies (STS);

iv) Assistance in accessing financing transition and beyond;

v) Facilitating South-South Cooperation, dialogue and sharing country as well as region-specific knowledge and experience; and

vi) Ensuring effective participation in the monitoring process of the CDP.

The Facility was piloted by DESA in close collaboration with OHRLLS and ESCAP in Vanuatu. OHRLLS and DESA introduced the Facility as an input to the LDC5 preparatory process on 26 May 2021 during an event co-organised with the Government of Bangladesh in the sidelines of the first session of the LDC5 Prep-Com. The Facility was also discussed at the LDC5 Asia-Pacific Regional Review (APRR) plenary Session 3 on 31 August 2021. The CDP Secretariat also presented the consolidated country responses to the Facility (iGRAD) e-survey for the sixteen graduating countries and one graduated country at the Ambassadorial Retreat of LDCs and Friends of LDCs on 22 October 2021.

The IATF supports graduating countries in their smooth transition strategies based on their unique development needs and goals.  

The IATF is designed to be responsive to the unique needs of LDCs in the graduation pipeline and to boost collaboration between agencies, donors and graduating LDCs.

The Terms of Reference of the IATF are available here.

Joint UN Workshops on Graduation Support 

Both São Tomé and Príncipe and Solomon Islands are scheduled to graduate in 2024. Joint UN Workshops on Graduation Support in each country in the autumn of 2019 to support graduation processes.

1.  Joint UN Workshop in Support of São Tomé e Príncipe’s Graduation from the LDC Category

  • As a follow up to the 2019 Joint UN Workshop, the IATF organized a special session in April 2021 dedicated to São Tomé e Príncipe to further support the Government along its graduation path.

2.    Joint UN Workshop in Support of Solomon Island’s Graduation from the LDC Category

  • The IATF convened a virtual special session on 11 November 2020 dedicated to further supporting Solomon Islands’ graduation. The UN Resident Coordinator for Solomon Islands, based in Fiji, Mr Sanaka Samarasinha, provided all members of the task force with a detailed overview of the situation and the UN Country Team work in the country and welcomed the coordinated support that the task force committed to offer to the Government. Over 10 task force members joined forces and crafted a dedicated joint work programme to support the formulation of a smooth transition strategy by the Government.