QATAR. Following months of negotiations by UNCTAD member states, the outcomes of UNCTAD XIII have been presented in the Doha Mandate. The Mandate, which is the adopted conference text, outlines UNCTAD’s program of action for the next four years.
His Excellency Dr. Hamad bin Abdulaziz Al-Kawari, Qatar’s Minister of Culture, Arts and Heritage, and President of the conference, referred to the Doha Mandate as “a shining light guiding us over the next four years”.
Negotiations amongst UNCTAD’s 194 member states were finalized today, with the Doha Mandate officially endorsed during the closing ceremony of the conference. The text provides a roadmap towards development centered globalization for UNCTAD, which Qatar will help to implement as president of the conference for the next four years.
Acknowledging Qatar’s role as host of the conference, His Excellency Dr. Supachai Panitchpakdi, Secretary-General of UNCTAD, said that: “In the past week Qatar has confirmed its reputation as a generous and welcoming host”. The Secretary-General commended Qatar’s sense of purpose, serving as “a beacon of hope for the international community”.
Dr. Supachai hailed the adoption of the conference text as an “important success”. He said: “The Doha Mandate represents a significant achievement considering the distance we have covered in just five days of negotiations”. He also expressed his hope that it would demonstrate UNCTAD’s ability to “walk the walk” in providing leadership on macro-economic issues.
The Doha Mandate agreement reaffirms and builds upon key areas of the Accra Accord, which was endorsed by member states at UNCTAD XIII. In the Mandate, it was agreed that UNCTAD would continue to focus on the impact of the global financial crisis on developing countries.
Member states also concurred that UNCTAD would focus its attention on addressing public rather than private debt. Ahead of the Rio+20 Summit in June 2012, it was agreed that UNCTAD would work in collaboration with other agencies working in the climate change space, rather than supporting individual countries.
UNCTAD will also continue to work on issues around technology and transfer, further considering technology dissemination and diffusion where appropriate. It will additionally provide support to the World Intellectual Property Organization (WIPO), where intellectual property rights relate to trade and development.
About UNCTAD XIII
The United Nations Conference on Trade and Development (UNCTAD) is holding its thirteenth session (UNCTAD XIII) at the ‘Qatar National Convention Centre’ in Doha from 21 to 26 April, 2012. It represents the first time that UNCTAD has been held in the Arab region. UNCTAD XIII will provide an opportunity for wide-ranging debate and reflection on the state of the global economy and the major economic challenges facing developing countries, particularly in light of recent economic and social crises.