Turkey

Turkey has become the voice of the least developed countries for the next ten years. The conference held at Istanbul was successful. I listened to Ahmet Davutoğlu’s speech. At the end an enthusiastic applause there was! I’m proud to be Turkish. I want to suggest three interesting articles about that conference:

FM willing to change expression of LDC

I quote Dünya:

“Foreign Minister Ahmet Davutoglu, has expressed his uneasiness with the expression “least developed country,” which is the name given to a country that, according to the United Nations, exhibits low indicators of socioeconomic development with lower Human Development Index ratings among all countries in the world. “LDC is a very annoying expression. I offered the UN secretary-general to change this expression in the shortest time possible. I said let’s develop new terminology”, Davutoglu told a group of journalists on Tuesday in Istanbul, which is hosting the Fourth United Nations Conference on the Least Developed Countries (LDCs). “Let me give you three examples: what is meant with LDC is economic development but Nepal is a fabulous cultural center where Buddhism which is the most important religious tradition in the world was born. It has also been an important center in history.

Bengal is one of the historically rich regions. Mali has the richest gold sources in Africa and it has the city Timbuktu, which has certain architectural characteristics that are accepted as miraculous even today,” said Davutoglu and “There is a need to mull over the name. We will find a good name,” he added.”

Now below the article of TRT English:

Istanbul action plan adopted at conference on LDC

“İstanbul Action Plan which sets out the next 10 years within the context of the United Nations Conference on the Least Developed Countries, was adopted in İstanbul.

Briefing the press members about the Conference, Foreign Minister Ahmet Davutoğlu said he has conducted intense bilateral meetings throughout the Conference and all of these talks were very productive.

Davutoğlu noted that İstanbul Action Plan, which outlines a 10 year plan for the least developed countries has been concluded and the details will be revealed at the end of the Conference.

Davutoğlu said that the amount of financial assistance that these countries will receive has been raised. Turkey’s Foreign Minister also stated that Turkey has set aside a three billion dollar budget for the next ten years for the least developed countries to be used in investments and trade.

Mr. Davutoğlu also said Turkey’s suggestion to change the definition of “least developed countries” has been met positively by other countries and the alternative names could be ‘emerging countries of the future’ and ‘potentially developing nations’.”

I like “Emerging countries of the future”.

Lastly here is an excellent article published by Anadolu Ajansı (suggested by Cumhuriyet English (it’s not possible to copy and paste on the website of Anadolu Ajansı, which is a newspaper that was founded by Atatürk in 1920)):

Istanbul Action Plan made public at end of 4th UN Conference on the Least Developed Countries

The Istanbul Action Plan, providing a road map for the least developed countries in the next 10 years, was made public on Friday at the end of the Fourth UN Conference on the Least Developed Countries (LDC-IV) in north-western province of Istanbul.

“The 50-page document is titled “Action Plan for the Least Developed Countries in the Term 2011-2020” and will be adopted in a few hours at the closure of the Istanbul conference. The document encompasses problems experienced by the least developed countries and offers advices in order to deal with such problems.

The Istanbul Action Plan also evaluated the Brussels Action Plan which had drawn a road map for the past 10 years. The Istanbul Action Plan said that the peoples of the world can not remain indifferent to the poverty experienced by 75 percent of the populations of the least developed countries.

While the least developed countries have the highest birth rates in the world, they are also the countries with lowest incomes per person, the Istanbul Action Plan said. The Istanbul Action Plan said that cooperation, solidarity and partnership with the least developed countries was not merely an ethical obligation but also an economic and political one.

Evaluating the Brussels Action Plan, the Istanbul Action Plan said that “while the Brussels Action Plan made positive contributions to the least developed countries, many of the plan’s stated goals were not reached”. The Istanbul Action Plan aims to reduce the number of 48 least developed countries by half by the year 2020.

The Istanbul Action Plan listed certain areas with priority as follows:

-Development of infrastructure, energy, science-technology, private sector under the heading “Production capacity”
-Development of Agriculture, food security and rural areas
-Trade
-Products
-Education, population and basic health, development of youth, preservation, water and irrigation, equality of women and men, strengthening women and social security
-Economic shocks, climate change, environmental sustainability, reducing risks during natural disasters
-Using local resources, official assistance for development, foreign debt, direct international investment, donations

The Fourth UN Conference on the Least Developed Countries took place in Istanbul between May 9 and 13. About 60 heads of state or government and 100 ministers attended the conference. Two papers, a political declaration and an action plan, will be adopted at the end of the conference in order to pave the way for a road map for activities of the next decade.

There are 48 least developed countries in the world with a population of 950 million. There are 33 African, 14 Pacifician and a Latin American states among those countries.

In 1971, the international community recognized as the Least Developed Countries a category of countries distinguished not only by widespread poverty, but also by the structural weakness of those countries’ economic, institutional and human resources, often compounded by geographical handicaps.

The group, comprising 25 countries at the time has been described by the United Nations as “the poorest and weakest segment of the international community” whose economic and social development presents a major challenge both for them and for their development partners.

The UN General Assembly convened the First United Nations Conference on the Least Developed Countries in Paris in 1981 to respond to the special needs of the LDCs. To continue the focus on the need for special measures for those countries, the General Assembly convened the Second United Nations Conference on the Least Developed Countries, also in Paris, in 1990. The third conference was held in Brussels in 2001.”

Let’s all have real hope now. Let’s have confidence in Turkey’s commitment.

One world, one nation!

Best regards,

Cem

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