Inclusive growth should be guiding objective of UNDP: India

PTI United Nations | Updated on January 29, 2014 Published on January 29, 2014

India has stressed that eradication of poverty and inclusive growth should be the “singular guiding” objective of the activities of the UNDP particularly in the post-2015 development agenda.

India’s Ambassador to the UN Asoke Kumar Mukerji said that the United Nations Development Programme’s strategic plan has given an explicit vision, the eradication of poverty and inclusive growth.

“This has to be the singular guiding objective of UNDP’s activities, as well as the critical benchmark of assessment, as the organisation proceeds forward in the implementation of the strategic plan, especially in developing countries,” Mukerji said at the first regular session 2014 of the Executive Board of UNDP.

UNDP Executive Board is made up of representatives from 36 countries around the world who serve on a rotating basis.

Through its Bureau, consisting of representatives from five regional groups, the Board oversees and supports the activities of UNDP, ensuring that the organisation remains responsive to the evolving needs of programme countries.

Mukerji said that for the UN development system as well as for the post-2015 development agenda to succeed, the starting premise has to be rooted in the “D of UNDP” and strongly anchored on issues of “development” alone.

“If we were to lose sight of this defining objective, and cloud ourselves with extraneous issues by trying to somehow connect them with development, we might end up doing the development agenda a great disservice,” Mukerji said.

He said given the mandate of the UNDP’s Global Programme, it is a “bit disconcerting” to note that even the phrase “poverty eradication” did not find mention in any of the five priorities of UNDP’s draft of the global programme.

“This was a bit surprising, as it supposedly drew sustenance from the strategic plan,” he said.

India has stressed that the UN Development System should also consider how to empower women by providing them access to, and use of, enabling technologies for socio-economic development.

“Based on the rapid penetration of information and communication technologies into societies in developing, including least developed economies, it is necessary and feasible for us to look at the ‘force multiplier’ effect of these technologies in altering the narrative of women’s empowerment debate in developing countries.

“We can attempt this by planning programmes and projects that place such empowering tools at the hands of women, themselves,” Mukerji added.

Mukerji said India has one of the longest relationships with UNDP and is the largest contributor to its core budget among developing countries.

“We have an abiding interest in UNDP’s success and your efforts in the global development agenda,” he said citing a quote by Mahatma Gandhi which said “Recall the face of the poorest and weakest man you have seen, and ask yourself if this step you contemplate is going to be any use to him.”

Published on January 29, 2014
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