Daily report for 9 February 1994

1st Session of the 1995 WSSD Preparatory Committee


The Plenary met yesterday morning to consider recommendations foraction by the UN based on Working Paper 1 and Addendum 1. There wasno afternoon session yesterday to provide time for the decisiondocuments to be prepared for today's session.

TUNISIA: The Summit should identify supplemental financingfor specific rural and urban programmes, particularly in Africa.The action plan should pay particular attention to Africa as partof a new international agenda. As mentioned in the Africandocument, financial mechanisms similar to the GEF for theenvironment should be established for follow-up.

REPUBLIC OF KOREA: Concrete political will by theinternational community is critical for the success of the Summit.The role of the UN should be to foster international cooperation.It should also strengthen its social sector through thereallocation of resources with a specific budget for the socialsector. Implementation of the Summit's outcomes is theresponsibility of individual countries. Nevertheless, internationalmechanisms for implementation and follow-up should be established.

GREECE, on behalf of the EU, said that it is premature tomake concrete proposals regarding the role of the UN. Better useshould be made of existing institutions dealing with social issues,rather than creating new ones. This will require bettercoordination, integration and coherence within the UN. The BrettonWoods institutions should work closely with the UN, while the ILOcan be useful in follow-up.

INDIA: Agencies such as UNICEF have made decisivecontributions in the advocacy field and had provided some financialsupport for projects. At a UNDP-sponsored conference in December1993, India and Pakistan called on UNDP to adopt the theme of"mobilization of the poor" as the central focus of its charter justas UNICEF has focused on the child in its charter. The World Bankcannot divorce the micro needs of the poor from the macro needs ofthe economy. Priorities for the Bank and donors are: ruralemployment schemes; self-employment schemes, focusing on women,with training to upgrade their skills; prioritization in thedelivery of social programmes, starting with the remotest areas;and support of innovative institutions.

THE NETHERLANDS: The 50th Anniversary of the UN in 1995provides an opportunity for thorough self-investigation andreconsideration of structural and operational adjustments. Furtherintegration between political and human security may necessitate achange in the Charter. ECOSOC could be the body to further developthe concept of human security.

SWEDEN: Based on the report of the Conference of EuropeanMinisters Responsible for Social Development held in Bratislava inJune-July 1993, he proposed a multilateral European forum at thepolitical level to deal with social development.

SWITZERLAND: The PrepCom should draw more from the Rioinstruments and Agenda 21 than is mentioned in paras 25 and 26 ofDocument A/AC.166/PC/6. The UN agencies should play a major role inWSSD follow-up. The Bretton Woods institutions should provideadvice and assistance in follow-up. ILO, UNESCO, UNRISD, UNDP andother UN agencies have expertise and experience on the core issuesand should play a role in the analysis and synthesis of the issues,as well as in the re-orientation and re-allocation of funds. TheSecretariat should provide a report during the next session of theoutcome of the discussion to be carried out by ECOSOC on theagenda for human development. The possibility of merging ECOSOCwith the UN Security Council could be considered.

URUGUAY: Social issues cannot be resolved withoutinternational cooperation. The most important role of the UN is tocatalyze discussion on the core issues, particularly at thenational level. The UN agencies can mobilize seed funds andtechnical assistance for country development projects as UNDP didin Uruguay.

ALGERIA, on behalf of the G-77 and China, noted twoimportant factors of the role of the UN: (1) there is a need forgreater coordination and linkage among the social and economicorgans in the UN, and between the UN and other international andfinancial institutions; and (2) the allocation of considerableresources for peace-keeping activities should be reviewed.

C"TE D'IVOIRE: The key to success for the WSSD is to befound in the political will of donors to commit themselves to asocial contract to prevent social disintegration and to ensure fullemployment. Decisions from the African common position should beadopted such as: 20% of official development assistance should bespent on social measures; official debt should be written off andthe resources applied toward social development; and UNICEF, UNFPA,UNIFEM, and UNDP resources should be increased. Organs dealing witheconomic and social questions should be strengthened withsufficient human and financial resources. Structural adjustmentmust have a human face. International and regional banks shouldsupport local and rural banks close to the people to provideshort-term loans to women and youth.

UGANDA: Capacity building at the national level must beintegral to follow-up. A major difficulty with economic reforms isthat inadequate attention is paid to the social costs of economicdevelopment. Resources from development programmes must not bereallocated to the social fields. To achieve the goals of the WSSD,new and additional resources are needed. UN agencies should play anadvocacy role at the grassroots level. An Economic and SocialSecurity Council would have to be democratic and have no vetopower.

AUSTRALIA: The machinery for the advancement of all peoplehas five parts: the General Assembly, ECOSOC, the Security Council,the specialized agencies, and the Bretton Woods institutions. Whilethe Security Council's main charge is to watch over internationalpeace and security, the definition of security is not simplymilitary in nature. At the Earth Summit, the meeting of Heads ofState adopted a definition of security incorporating economic andsocial factors. Above all, what is needed in the machinery arepolicies that serve as goals for social development and coherenceof action. Four things must be done to ensure that the WSSDreshapes the machinery and policies: all parts of the UN systemmust be people-centered; new priorities should be designed in theprogramme of action; the UN cannot be adequately described by BlueHelmets only; and the Bretton Woods institutions should beencouraged to join in redefining the priorities of the UN system inpeople-centered social development.

TURKEY: More emphasis should be placed on the economic andsocial issues of the UN in light of the emerging concepts of peaceand security. The close relationship between ECOSOC and theSecurity Council, as suggested by the Netherlands, should bereviewed.

CHINA: The UN should: (1) undertake social development as acentral role; (2) strengthen and coordinate its organs in socialdevelopment activities and link its efforts with all the relevantnational departments in the promotion and realization of socialdevelopment policies and goals; (3) ensure that the Bretton Woodsinstitutions and regional banks emphasize social development; and(4) emphasize social development in its work and assist researchprojects in the developing countries.

CANADA: The UN institutions must operate in an integratedmanner to monitor implementation and follow-up. The role of ECOSOC,particularly in follow-up and monitoring should be strengthened.Regional development banks and international financial institutionsshould be associated with other UN institutions for betterimplementation. Other bilateral agencies should review theirallocation of resources. The implementation and the role of NGOs incombatting poverty should be enhanced by developing partnershipswith civil society to ensure that action plans are implemented. TheSecretariat document should be seen as a working tool that could beused after the Summit to help those entrusted with theimplementation of the output.

NORWAY: The UN system is too fragmented and uncoordinated.A more efficient use of combined resources in a more coordinated UNsystem would be beneficial. A division of labor based oncomparative advantages rather than competition is needed.Coordination between Summits and Conferences is necessary.

PERU: The efforts made by UN agencies working in the socialfield should be acknowledged and strengthened. There is a need forgreater cooperation among the agencies to address the three coreissues. Regional social bodies should be revitalized with ties tothe World Bank and regional development banks strengthened.

US: The discussion in this PrepCom shows the need to empowerindividuals to make decisions about their own lives. Empowerment isin the hands of individuals and NGOs, and governments have a roleto play since better social development requires effective policiesand laws.

NIGERIA: The UN and other international institutions shouldaddress the coordination of available financial resources to ensurecost-effectiveness. There is need for international cooperationbetween governments and NGOs and the private and public sectors.Restructuring should be people-centred.

AUSTRIA: There is a need to enhance networking between NGOsand government and to stimulate the sharing of relevant data, whilepaying attention to developing and less developed countries.

GHANA: Financial institutions should write off external debtand allocate resources to women and youth and disabled persons totake them off the streets. Scarce resources often have to be sharedwith refugees.


NGOs met Wednesday evening to discuss the mobilization andfacilitation of NGOs in the Summit. They decided that: the DanishHost Committee and NGLS should organize an NGO briefing session atthe start of the next session; NGLS should oversee funding forSouthern NGO participation; the idea of an NGO Secretariat tofacilitate intersessional and other inputs should be discussed atthe next session, if it is found to be necessary. The decision tohave a facilitating group comprising people from various regions,sectors and interests was deferred to the next session. In theinterim, NGOs agreed to form a loose liaison group to undertaketasks such as reporting on the progress of government discussions.


PLENARY: The Plenary will meet this morning to considerthree documents to be presented by the Secretariat: a draftdecision on Agenda Item 3 regarding the status of preparations forthe WSSD; a draft decision on Agenda Item 4 on the analysis of thecore issues; and a draft decision document regarding thedocumentation for the next session. It is likely that the Chairthis morning will ask a small drafting group to meet in parallelwith the Plenary to begin modifying the draft decision on AgendaItem 4. The Plenary will probably start with discussions on thedocument that deals with the status of preparations.

DRAFT DECISION DOCUMENT 1 addresses: contributions to theTrust Fund for the WSSD; the organization of seminars, workshopsand other activities; the establishment of national committees andpreparation of national reports; the participation of NGOs andorganizations in the UN system; and the role and importance ofresearch activities to the Summit; and raising awareness of thecore issues through public information activities.

DRAFT DECISION DOCUMENT 2 addresses the outcomes of theSummit. It contains a series of basic principles that should guidethe Secretary-General in the drafting process. It defines the scopeand basic components of the draft declaration, the five parts ofthe draft programme of action and some guidelines for elements tobe included. This document should also include reference to a thirdoutput of the Summit, as proposed by Canada. This involves thepreparation of a multi-disciplinary synthesis background document.The Annex to Document 2 will be available on Friday and willinclude the elements for the draft declaration and plan of actionas discussed in the general debate over the past two weeks.

DRAFT DECISION DOCUMENT 3 requests the Secretariat toprepare documentation for the August session of the PrepCom, and toinclude an expansion of Working Papers 2 and 3, as well as asummary of comments made at this session by Member States.