The past decade has shown the power of partnerships to advance development. More children are in school, more mothers survive pregnancy and childbirth, and more infants and toddlers live to adulthood.
But despite the strong performance of many developing countries, there remain large pockets of poverty in the global South, even in fast-growing emerging economies. This is a stark reminder that even as countries reap higher economic gains, we must work to ensure that the opportunities for prosperity are distributed more equitably.
The Rio+20 Conference on Sustainable Development, held in June, affirmed that equity and fairness must remain at the top of the international agenda as we seek to balance social, economic and environmental needs. This principle is guiding our ongoing work on the post-2015 development agenda.
South-South cooperation has the potential to balance growth and equity on a global scale. Even in the midst of severe economic, social and political instabilities, South-South cooperation has continued to drive buoyant trade and financial flows in recent years.
The countries of the South are building new models of development cooperation that emphasize mutual benefit and solidarity as well as cost-effectiveness. This is helping to provide people with improved access to affordable medicines, technology and credit.
The rapid spread of information technology has dramatically increased connectivity and networking throughout the South, creating enormous opportunities for sharing of experience, knowledge and good practices that can boost development. South-South cooperation holds great potential for even greater sharing of expertise in areas such as education, health, energy and food security.
As we mark the United Nations Day for South-South Cooperation, I pledge to further strengthen support for this fruitful collaboration, which can improve conditions in the Global South that reverberate around the world.