19 September 2001
Report of the Meeting of the High-Level Advisory Group of Eminent Personalities and Intellectuals on Globalization and Its Impact on Developing Countries
Geneva, 12-14 September 2001
AGREED CONCLUSIONS AND RECOMMENDATIONS
The High-level Advisory Group of Eminent Personalities and Intellectuals, convened pursuant to the decision of the South Summit (Havana, Cuba, 10-14 April 2000), to prepare a report on globalization and its impacts on developing countries, met in Geneva from 12 to 14 September 2001 under the Chairmanship of H.E. Ambassador Bagher Asadi, Chairman of the Group of 77 in New York. Having addressed the multifaceted issues of globalization, the Group agreed on the following conclusions and recommendations:
The present processes of globalization have led to widening inequities between North and South as well as within countries, and the developing countries and the poor people within countries are becoming ever more marginalized. Moreover the global economy has become more unstable, due to the volatility of financial flows and currency exchange rates and their effects on the real economy. The current global economic crisis is a reflection of this instability the lack of global policy coordination. People across the world are also feeling more and more insecure as they perceive an increasing inability to exercise control over their lives.
Whilst economic policies and relations are greatly influenced by technological developments, the Group believes that �globalization� should not be seen as an inevitable force beyond the control of human beings or of countries. Instead, the type of globalization process taking place is to a large extent the result of policy choices, and thus determined by human decisions, values and culture. Thus, the globalization process itself can and should be given a proper direction. It can be changed through the selection of different policies, and these policies should be based on the shared positive values of humanity, especially justice, equity and the well-being of all people. Since many aspects of the present type of globalization have produced negative effects, especially on developing countries, then the globalization process can and should be re-shaped to make it more inclusive, more equitable and beneficial to people in the developing world.
The Group was of the view that the central concept of interdependence should be restored to the phenomenon of globalization. Globalization without real interdependence is unmanageable and may result in confrontation, suffering and social chaos. The Group therefore was moved by the need for revitalizing the spirit and central role of multilateral cooperation in all fields. The Group stressed the need for an alternative and more inclusive economic paradigm to guide international economic relations as well as national development strategies.
Having recognized the need for interdependence and multilateralism, the Group agreed that developing countries have to actively prepare for and participate in meetings, gatherings and global negotiations that will shape globalization. It is thus critical that developing countries carefully prepare for and take advantage of the forthcoming major global events, including the Ministerial Conference of WTO, International Conference on Financing for Development, and the World Summit on Sustainable Development, in order to promote the interests of the South and attain a more balanced agenda for globalization. The Group also believed that these global conferences should be taken not as once-and-for-all events, but as important milestones for on-going processes of reforming aspects of the international order to make it more balanced and equitable.
The G.77 should build upon the momentum emanating from the Havana Summit by deepening the coherence between domestic and external policy approaches. This coherence should be based on a realistic understanding of the process of globalization and appropriate responses to it, in order to make globalization more inclusive. In this context the Group recognized that the concept and approach of "decent work" constitutes a positive direct response to globalization, as it puts quality employment at the centre of economic and social policies and is an important component of the development agenda.
The Group discussed various aspects of globalization, including trade, finance, environment and development, and governance issues and strengthening of the developing countries. The conclusions are summarized below.
2. TRADE AND DEVELOPMENT
The Advisory Group recognized that trade has an important role to play in development. It was also recognized that in the trade-development nexus, trade is a means whilst development is the objective. Trade liberalization has led to mixed results in developing countries. Some countries that paced their liberalization in line with the development of their industries were able to improve their competitiveness and to also expand the range and volume of their exports. However, many developing counties, often under structural adjustment programmes, engaged in rapid liberalization before their domestic firms were sufficiently competitive, thus resulting in deindustrialisation or a closure of firms and loss of manufacturing jobs. In the agriculture sector, the viability of small farms in some sectors in many developing countries continue to be affected by cheap imports (some of which are heavily subsidized). Recent UNCTAD data show that whilst imports surged, exports did not increase at a corresponding rate, and the trade deficits of developing countries (excluding China) on average increased by 3 percentage points of GNP between the 1970s and the 1990s, and inappropriate trade liberalization was a contributory factor. Whilst imports were liberalized, developing countries� exports have been constrained by the fall in commodity prices, continued lack of access to developed countries� markets in sectors such as agriculture and textiles, and by supply constraints.
It is proposed that the dominant trade policy model that stresses maximum liberalization be reviewed and modified. Instead, a policy of appropriate liberalization should be adopted, in which the pace, scope and sectors for liberalization are matched with the preparedness of the country concerned, the existence of necessary conditions and of adequate export opportunities and earnings. Appropriate lessons should be drawn from the trade experience (positive and negative) of developing countries so as to enable the evolution of more appropriate approaches to trade strategy and policy. The trade policy conditionalities of the Bretton Woods institutions, and the rules and operational principles of he WTO, should be reassessed and reconsidered in light of this.
2.2 Issues relating to the World Trade Organization
Despite the establishment of the WTO, the benefits of global trade have continued to be unevenly distributed. This is marked by the increased marginalization of developing countries, particularly the LDCs. It was recognized that the present WTO structure and rules have not been designed to sufficiently take into account the capacities, needs and interests of developing country Members. As a result, the developing counties face several types of problems in the WTO system: First, some important structural features of the system and many agreements are imbalanced against their interests. Second, the anticipated benefits from the Uruguay Round to developing countries have not materialized (a significant reason being that developed countries� markets are still restricted in textiles and agriculture and through tariff peaks, tariff escalation and anti-dumping measures). Third, developing countries face problems when implementing their obligations under the rules, including on intellectual property, investment measures, subsidies and agriculture. It was noted that many of the serious implementation problems arose from the then �new issues� added to the trading system through the Uruguay Round. Fourth, they are facing intense pressures to accept more obligations in �new issues� such as investment, competition, government procurement and labour and environment standards, proposed by developed countries for negotiations toward new agreements. Fifth, the decision-making process is often untransparent (especially in the process of preparing for and at Ministerial conferences), adding to the difficulties already faced by developing countries to participate, due to their inadequate capacity.
The Group�s recommendations concern two kinds of needs: the immediate requirements raised by the ongoing negotiations at the WTO, and the underlying needs related with the capacity to formulate trade policies and rules in accordance with the developing countries� development requirements and objectives.
Recommendations on the immediate requirements:
In view of the forthcoming 4th Ministerial Meeting of the WTO, immediate attention needs to be given to ensure that developing countries� interests and concerns are fully reflected in the WTO�s future work programme. Thus the process of drafting and the substance of the Ministerial Declaration is of utmost importance. The processes of formulating the Declaration and the preparation of the work programme must be inclusive and transparent, allowing for the full participation of developing countries and avoiding exclusive "green room" meetings. While the specific interests of the G77 members are diverse, there is a shared concern on the need for the WTO work programme to address their development needs and to facilitate the effective participation of developing countries in the development and execution of this work programme. Developing countries need to continue to bring forward concrete proposals on the full range of WTO issues of concern to them. Adequate support should be provided (including by UN agencies and by institutions of the developing world) to the developing countries to develop and defend their positions and to participate in negotiations and other discussions.
On the substantive content of the WTO work programme, the first priority must be to address the development agenda of the developing countries. In fact, this must be the main focus of the WTO�s work in the next several years. This Development Agenda should deal with the problems facing developing countries, as described above. First, there should be a review of the various WTO agreements in order to rectify the imbalances and deficiencies contained in them, and thus improve them. Second (and related to the first), the problems of implementation faced by developing countries when fulfilling their obligations have to be addressed. Third, focus should be put on the need for and mechanisms of developed countries to fulfil their commitments in reducing and removing trade restrictions in areas of interest to developing countries (including liberalization of textiles and agriculture, tariff peaks and escalation, anti dumping and other protectionist measures, etc). Fourth, the special and differential treatment principle should be strengthened and operationalized (including in making it legally binding in various rules). Fifth, there should be the mainstreaming of development and the development principle into the operational principles, policies and rules of the WTO. Sixth, the special needs of LDCs have to be addressed. Seventh, the system and culture of decision making should be transformed to become transparent and participatory to enable full participation by developing countries; the restricted "Green Room processes" in which only some countries are invited should be discontinued, and all Members must be allowed to attend all the meetings of WTO and take part in decision-making.
The WTO�s work programme will also be occupied with the built-in agenda, including negotiations in agriculture and services, and the mandated reviews of TRIMS and TRIPS.
With the above agenda, the WTO will already have a heavy schedule of work. The claim that the WTO requires negotiations in new areas to maintain the institution�s relevance is thus misleading. Indeed, there is now rethinking among trade experts and the public interest groups as to the wisdom of having extended the mandate of the multilateral trading system to non-trade areas such as intellectual property rights, as this has threatened to distort the role of the trading system. The proposed new issues of investment, competition and government procurement (as well as labour and environmental standards), if accepted into the WTO, would further extend the frontiers of the trading system to new and unchartered areas. The Group is of the view that such an extension of the frontiers is not advisable for several reasons. The proposed issues, if accepted for negotiations, could lead to new agreements that further restrict the national policy space of developing counties and constrain their development options, with adverse development consequences. They would overload the WTO system, or even distort it, as most of the issues do not directly involve trade nor are they suitable subjects on which trade or WTO rules should apply. If negotiations were to start on these new issues, the critically important development agenda of developing countries (or issues of vital importance to developing countries) would not be able to command the attention it deserves.
Therefore, the Group suggests that the proposed new issues should not be included on the agenda or the work programme of the WTO Ministerial Conference in Doha.
Recommendations on the nature of the multilateral trading system and the development imperatives
The basic design of the trading system should be reviewed and improved on. The basic principle of reciprocity among Members should be reviewed, particularly as developing countries (with less capacity) would not be able to benefit equitably from the operation of this principle. Instead, the WTO system and its rules should recognize that Members have different levels of capacity and are at different levels of development, and that in order for there to be equitable benefits in the outcome, the rules have to be designed in such a manner that there are correspondingly different levels of obligations.
The development principle (as reflected in the objectives of the Marrakech Agreement) should also be accorded the highest priority. Therefore, the existing rules should be reviewed and appropriate changes made, so that measures and policies required for the development of developing countries could be permitted in the rules.
The appropriate scope and mandate of the WTO could also be examined, in light of the experience to date of the WTO. For example, the appropriateness of the issues currently in WTO or are presently being proposed for entry into the WTO system should be objectively assessed and those issues that are inappropriate for rule making in the WTO should be dealt with in other fora.
2.3 Trade issues not covered by WTO
There are some issues that are not covered by the WTO but which are critical to the trade performance of developing countries. The Group believes that these issues should be given the importance they deserve.
The problem of commodities
The decline in terms of trade for commodities, and for commodity-dependent developing countries, remains one of the most important trade problems for many developing countries, which have suffered serious income losses resulting from this terms-of-trade decline. Since the early 1970s, developing countries have also suffered losses of market shares in world commodity export markets, caused by their loss of competitiveness in production and marketing and to protectionism and high subsidies in developed countries.
The developing countries' commodity problem should be on the agenda of international processes such as the Financing for Development Conference. Where feasible, the international community should encourage international schemes aimed at voluntary supply management to achieve a better balance between supply and demand in commodities, thus avoiding waste of investment, depletion of natural resources and excessive price volatility. In their financing of projects that increase the production of a specific commodity, the international and regional financial institutions should take into account the effect of the production increases on the price level and export earnings of other developing countries exporting the same commodity. Developed countries should eliminate or drastically reduce their tariff peaks, tariff escalation and trade-distorting subsidies in agriculture. UNCTAD should act more effectively on the commodity issue and resources should be provided to enable this. All developed countries should join the Common Fund for Commodities and provide it adequate resources to assist developing countries.
Fundamental issues of supply capacity
A major reason why many developing countries have been unable to adequately benefit from the trading system is their lack of supply capacity, due to the low levels of infrastructure, technology, enterprise management, labour skills, marketing and distribution systems. For developing countries to benefit from the trading system, they should be assisted in removing these obstacles and in building their domestic production, technological and marketing capacities. These issues should be taken up by relevant institutions, particularly in the UN system.
3. FINANCE AND DEVELOPMENT
The creation and full utilisation of domestic financial resources is a key component of any successful development strategy. However, in an increasingly interdependent global economy, the external financial environment may be as important to achieving this objective as domestic policies designed to raise domestic savings to support rapid capital accumulation and growth.
The Group recognizes that financing development through private financial markets has become a central feature of the contemporary globalization process. This has occurred in an environment of steadily declining official development assistance (ODA). Although there was an upsurge in private flows in the 1990s, this represented no more than a return to trend after the blighted years of the 1980s and those inflows have increasingly been concentrated in a small group of emerging markets. Moreover, an important part of private capital inflows, motivated by speculation, has proved highly unstable triggering boom-bust cycles in some countries. Even the surge in FDI to developing countries has been heavily weighted towards acquisitions of service sector firms rather than greenfield investment in export sectors. As a result of capital account liberalization, a growing proportion of net private capital inflows to developing countries is absorbed by activities that add little to productive capacity, including the accumulation of reserves as a safeguard against speculative attacks.
The Financing for Development Conference, to be held next year in Mexico, provides an unprecedented opportunity to find better ways of providing more stable and effective means to finance social and economic development. In approaching the Conference, the Group, while not ruling out specific proposals, recommends adopting broad guidelines and principles to ensure that the process reflects those systemic issues of concern to developing countries rather than designing a detailed blueprint of reform. Given that any broad principles and specific proposals will have to be translated into action across a number of multilateral institutions, follow-up will be particularly important.
In light of the unbalanced representation in existing multilateral financial institutions, the Group sees the desirability of a new forum to monitor the outcomes of the Conference and to further pursue, on a continuous basis, the concerns of developing countries on matters of international finance.
A guiding principle for developing countries at the conference must be that private financial markets cannot be relied upon to provide all their development finance needs. Accordingly:
- The Group repeats the urgent call to raise ODA to the target levels already agreed by the international community and to make that aid more effective by decoupling it from donor demands;
- Reiterates that while greater reliance on grants for poverty alleviation programmes in LDCs is desirable, this should not come at the expense of continued multilateral lending to middle income countries;
- Calls for additional financing to be made available to meet the needs arising from trade liberalization in developing countries;
It is generally recognized that the debt of many developing countries is not fully payable. To date the resolution of such debt problems has been left entirely to the discretion of creditors. As a result middle-income countries facing similar debt burdens have been excluded, and, even for those involved, excessive and intrusive conditionality has greatly slowed the process. The Group, therefore:
- Insists that this is against the principles established in most industrial countries which recognizes debtor's rights and extends protection to all of them;
- Recommends an independent assessment of the debt problem in developing countries with a view to its full and swift resolution.
- Insists that debt relief should not be at the expense of ODA.
Because financial instability is global and systemic the Group insists that reforming the international financial system cannot be left exclusively to major creditor countries. The Group notes that the reform of the international architecture designed to bring greater stability to international financial markets should include:
- greater transparency of the international financial markets and institutions, including the activities and operations of currency traders and hedge funds;
- a more effective regulation and supervision of international capital flows, including the activities of international lenders and investors in the source countries.
The current approach to managing financial crises aims to keep open the capital account and meet the demands of the creditors. The resulting policy advice has often heightened recessionary pressures in countries hit by crisis, and debt-restructuring programmes have all too often shifted the burden onto taxpayers by de facto government guarantees for private debt. Therefore, the Group:
- urges a search for credible alternative strategies for involving the private sector in crisis management and resolution;
- notes that a combination of temporary standstills for countries experiencing financial crisis along with stricter limits on access to IMF resources for capital account financing could offer an alternative basis for crisis management, and suggests that such limits should only be exceeded when there is a risk of systemic crisis and the explicit involvement of creditors, recognizing that current IMF quotas have lagged far behind the growth of global output, trade and financial flows, and may not provide appropriate yardsticks to evaluate the desirable limits to normal access;
- reiterates that given the increased instability of the external trading and financial environment of developing countries, an effective reform of the Bretton Woods institutions should seek to improve, not eliminate, counter-cyclical and emergency financing for trade and other current transactions.
The Group recognises that in international finance, power and influence is heavily biased in favour of the industrial creditor countries. In particular, the three major financial powers or G3 set their macroeconomic and monetary policies independently of their impact on capital flows to and debt burden of developing countries. Instability and misalignment among the currencies of the G3 is a major source of disruption for developing countries in the management of their exchange rates. Accordingly, the Group:
- insists on making the exchange rate system integral to any discussion of financing development;
- calls for strengthening surveillance of the macroeconomic policies of industrial countries and suggests creating procedures and mechanisms for ensuring the coherence of those policies with stable flows of finance for development.
Noting the absence of effective global arrangements to achieve greater financial stability, the Group reaffirms the importance for developing countries to retain their policy autonomy with respect to the choice of exchange rate regime and capital account liberalization.
4. ENVIRONMENT AND DEVELOPMENT
The Group recognized that the environment is an important issue both for the world as well as for developing countries, as the crises of resource depletion, pollution, climate change, water scarcity and so on have immense effects and implications for developing countries. As worked out in the process towards and at UNCED 1992 and after, issues related to the environment have to be integrally related to development, within the context of sustainable development. In that framework, the principle of �common but differentiated responsibilities� as contained in the Rio Declaration should be upheld.
Negotiations and treaty-making in the area of environment and development are very much part of the processes of international relations and have profound implications for developing countries, which should thus seriously build their capacity in this area. The forthcoming World Summit on Sustainable Development (WSSD) in 2002 is of vital importance in this regard. Whilst recognizing the worsening global environmental trends, developing countries should uphold the framework of working towards solutions to environmental problems in conjunction with development objectives and needs, and in line with the principle of common but differentiated responsibilities.
The Group noted the importance of the on-going discussions on international environmental governance, and stressed that this discussion should be conducted within the overall context of sustainable development. It was recognized that there should be a strengthening of the environmental activities of the UN system and of environmental governance, for example through better coordination among the multilateral environmental agreements. In order for balance to be maintained between environment and development, there should be a corresponding strengthening of the UN system�s development activities and capacity, and the enhancement of the framework and capacity of the UN in managing sustainable development, including the Commission on Sustainable Development.
The Group recognized that there are interactions between economic and environmental factors and effects. On the relation between trade and environment, there are concerns about both the possible adverse environmental effects of trade and the need to prevent environmental issues from being used as the basis for protectionism against developing countries� products. International trade, and trade liberalization, under some conditions, can contribute to unsustainable patterns of production and consumption; thus, there is the need to integrate environmental concerns in economic and trade policy making at national and international levels, to ensure that development is sustainable. However, in handling the trade-environment relation, developing countries and their export products should not be penalized. The issue of �environmental standards� (and related concepts such as processes and production methods, internalization of environmental costs and eco-dumping) are extremely complex and should not be the subject of negotiations in the WTO as they could be the basis for protectionism against developing countries� products. In discussions of environmental standards, the principle of common but differentiated responsibilities should apply.
In the WTO, developing countries should pay close attention to the relation between the multilateral environment agreements and the WTO agreements (for example, between the Convention on Biological Diversity and the TRIPS Agreement); the effects of the TRIPS agreement on the environment and on human development (including on the rights of farmers and local communities to their traditional knowledge and the use of their seeds and other resources); and the issue of domestically prohibited goods.
Developing countries should be supported to increase their capacity to participate in negotiations in the existing multilateral environment agreements, such as the Climate Change Convention and the Convention on Biological Diversity, as well as in the future processes involved in new agreements, so that they can protect and promote their interests. They should also be supported for the effective and beneficial implementation of these agreements.
5. GLOBAL GOVERNANCE
At this time of rapid change, the development prospects of developing countries, particularly in the fields of trade, money and finance, are being seriously affected by the unbridled pursuit of national, short-term interests of some important developed countries. Deep concern was expressed that mechanisms and rules established in these circumstances, in a non-democratic manner, will prove unsustainable over time and will produce more harm than good to the efforts of establishing a system of governance that strengthens global peace and security and creates a development-enhancing legal and institutional framework.
The development needs and interests of developing countries are only marginally reflected in global economic and multilateral rules and institutions. A consequence of this in practice is that there are international mechanisms by which rules can be implemented for the weak countries but not for the strong and the agenda for new multilateral rules and standards is largely shaped by the interests of a few powerful industrialized countries.
A starting point for achieving good global governance is reform of existing institutions of global governance to make their decision-making systems equitable. There should be reforms to the UN Security Council, to the Bretton Woods institutions (including fairer representation and voting rights for developing countries) and the World Trade Organization (in which all Members should have the full right to participate in decision-making). This will facilitate more balanced and equitable policies and outcomes from these institutions. Such reforms in the governance systems of the international institutions will be in the interests of developing countries and equally in the self-interest of industrialized countries. It should be recognized that good governance is also about establishing fair rules, and in designing fairness in the rules there must be the recognition of the different circumstances and levels of capacity and development of different players. As such, fair rules must be based on the acceptance that there should not be the same level of obligations for different countries, and that there should be special consideration in favor of the weak and less developed.
While, despite the one-country one-vote system, the United Nations system is characterized by a large democratic deficit (particularly in the Security Council), there was agreement that the United Nations should constitute the core of an emerging system of global governance that effectively addresses the root causes of problems, in addition to dealing with emergencies. The UN Charter provides an adequate basis for this purpose, as do, to a lesser degree, its decision-making processes, which need to be improved. Better functioning of the UN will require both greater financial independence on the part of the UN and strengthened and possible new democratic governance mechanisms and instruments.
The role of the UN secretariat, particularly of the Secretary-General, during this time of rapidly accelerating globalization, was also discussed. His role as a moral conscience of the world has been significantly enhanced by the expansion of the concept of security and the revolution in communications. This role must be exercised in a wise, committed and active manner, helping guide this momentous transition and helping safeguard the future of the weaker negotiating partners.
In this regard, this new, more active role of the secretariat could find its expression in a Report on the State of the World, based on the four-fold mandate of the United Nations: peace and security, development, human rights and humanitarian assistance. This Report, to be published under the responsibility of the Secretary-General, should concentrate on the analysis of trends, policies and intergovernmental negotiations in their interrelationship, highlighting those that are unsustainable and proposing corrective action. In doing so, the need to progressively establish an effective system of global governance in order to address the needs of all member states should be borne in mind.
STRENGTHENING THE DEVELOPING COUNTRIES
To face the challenges of globalization, developing countries need to strengthen their own institutions - nationally, regionally and internationally. At national level, countries could set up institutions such as think tanks and national committees to gather information, carry out analyses and put forward proposals on national policies for dealing with various aspects of globalization (including formulating national positions in international negotiations).
Regional organizations of the South should also set up or strengthen systems for gathering information and analyzing globalization issues and trends and make these available to member states.
At the international level, South-South cooperation on globalization issues could take the form of the sharing of information, experiences and policies among developing countries, including through greater cooperation between the regional organizations.
Developing countries and their regional and international organizations (especially the G77) should also establish better linkages with research organizations, think tanks, academics and NGOs of the developing countries, and facilitate their contributions to research, analyses and inputs for negotiations.
There was agreement that the G-77 needed to strengthen the substantive underpinning of its positions by reviewing its working methods and enhancing existing and, if necessary, establishing new institutional arrangements.
The Group acknowledged the contributions of the Third World Network to the cause of developing countries and urged that cooperation between the TWN and the Group of 77 be strengthened in various areas such as in providing information, research reports and inputs that the G77 can utilise for negotiations.
During the discussion two other cases were also mentioned: the South Center, which needs to enhance its functioning; and the Perez-Guerrero Fund for ECDC, whose resources need to be augmented.
The Group recommended that on a pilot basis the High-level Advisory Group of Eminent Personalities and Intellectuals on Globalization meet for two days prior to the convening of the IFCC meeting so as to make recommendations on the ongoing impact of globalization on developing countries as well as recommendations on the issues under consideration by the IFCC. The Office of the Chairman of the Group of 77 in New York should, in consultation with member States, appoint members of the Advisory Group.
The Advisory Group recommended the setting up of a task force group of experts from member states of the Group of 77 to meet in New York for 3 days prior to the convening of the Ministerial Meeting to be held in May 2002 in Indonesia in preparation for the World Summit on Sustainable Development (WSSD) with a view to arriving at a common negotiating position on the outcome of the Summit.
NOTE:The members of the HLAG, who participated in their individual capacities were:
Amb. Bagher Asadi (Permanent Representative of Iran to UN), Roberto Bissio (Instituto del Tercer Mundo, Uruguay), Amb. Jorge Ivan Mora Godoy (Dy Permanent Representative of Cuba to UNOG), Martin Khor (Director of Third World Network), Bhagirath Lal Das (former Indian ambassador to GATT and Director of UNCTAD's Trade Programmes), Alister McIntyre (former Deputy Secretary-General of UNCTAD), Prof. Deepak Nayyar (Indian Economist and Vice-Chancellor of Delhi University), Amb. Mubarak Hussein Rahmtala (Dy P.R.of Sudan to UN), Chakravarthi Raghavan (Chief Editor of South-North Development Monitor), Rubens Ricupero (Secretary-General of UNCTAD), Delphin Rwegasira (Executive Director of African Economic Research Consortium), Enrique ter Horst (former Asst UN secretary-general) and Layachi Yaker (former Algerian Minister and Executive Director of the Economic Commission for Africa). Two other members of the HLAG, Dr. Supachai Panitchpakdi and Ms Catherine Mwanamwambwa could not attend due to the disruptions in air transport caused by the terrorist attacks on New York and Washington. Among the resource persons assisting the group were Mr. Yilmaz Akyuz (in charge of UNCTAD's division on Global Development Strategies), Mme Safiatou Ba-N'Dow, Director of UNDP's TCDC and Robert Hamwey of the UNEP.