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Malaysia alleged that there was a deliberate attempt to omit the reference to international cooperation and North-South cooperation and to transfer all the responsibility for combatting desertification to developing countries. This point was supported by Mali, on behalf of the African Group, and Saudi Arabia, who stated that if the South could solve all the problems of desertification there would be no need for these negotiations.

Canada referred to a Canadian initiative that will prepare discussion materials on trade and sustainable development for the next session of the Commission on Sustainable Development.

Algeria stated that the achievement of the INCD goals requires a new type of North-South cooperation based on a spirit of partnership and international solidarity. Mali, on behalf of the African Group, stated that coordination should be examined at both the national and international level and that bilateral and multilateral cooperation must be improved. Australia supported this point and further suggested that governments develop other approaches such as: integrating desertification into development planning programmes; directing activities away from treating the consequences of desertification towards creating alternative strategies; developing social indicators of desertification; developing programmes to monitor impacts; and enhancing community participation in desertification programmes.

Egypt suggested that mechanisms are required to institutionalize and coordinate donor resources at the national level. Burkina Faso stated that cooperation should extend beyond past efforts and appealed to all governments to honor the commitments made at Rio. He added that despite the fact that recipient countries cannot always absorb development resources properly, improvements must be made in the coordination of financial resources. He noted that the "real situation" is different from what is being described in these discussions. Mauritania stated that desertification and poverty cannot be controlled without cooperation and coordination.


I. INSTITUTIONS [Return to start of article]