UN Reports on Progress towards New International Economic Order
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The UN issued an updated overview of the major international economic and policy challenges that must be addressed to achieve the aims of the 1974 Declaration on the Establishment of a New International Economic Order (NIEO).

The report finds that some of the ideas raised at the time are still relevant and useful for implementing the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development.

United Nations20 July 2016: The UN issued an updated overview of the major international economic and policy challenges that must be addressed to achieve the aims of the 1974 Declaration on the Establishment of a New International Economic Order (NIEO). The report finds that some of the ideas raised at the time are still relevant and useful for implementing the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development.

The UN General Assembly (UNGA) adopted the Declaration on the NIEO and its accompanying programme of action on 1 May 1974. In doing so, the UN pledged to take action on inequities and injustices in the international system, eliminate the gap between developed and developing countries, ensure accelerating economic and social development, and secure peace and justice.

According to the UN Secretary-General’s 2016 report, titled ‘Updated overview of the major international economic and policy challenges for equitable and inclusive sustained economic growth and sustainable development, and of the role of the United Nations in addressing these issues in the light of the New International Economic Order,’ significant achievements have been made since the NIEO was adopted, but much more can be done to coordinate the international response to slow productivity growth, volatile exchange rates, weak investment and declining trade flows worldwide.

The report provides an overview of progress made through the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) and related agreements, and discusses the contribution of the major international agreements of 2015 in realizing the aims of the NIEO. It suggests that the participatory process through which the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) were formulated, the emphasis on North-South technology transfer in the Addis Ababa Action Agenda (AAAA), and the acknowledgement of the need for financial assistance by developed countries to developing countries in the Paris Agreement on climate change are signs of progress toward the NIEO.

The report notes that successful outcomes will depend on the UN being able to play its role in managing the “multi-track processes of cooperation” that have been created through the major international agreements of 2015. Relevant forums and processes include the High-level Political Forum on Sustainable Development (HLPF), the Economic and Social Council (ECOSOC) forum on financing for development follow-up (FFD Forum), the Technology Facilitation Mechanism (TFM), and the Financial Mechanism and the Technology Mechanism of the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC). It also notes that non-State actors, such as civil society organizations (CSOs), NGOs and the business community, are increasingly being enlisted to participate in the work of the UN.

The report recalls that ECOSOC was expected to play a central role in implementing the NIEO, all organizations were asked to submit progress reports on implementation, and ECOSOC was requested to highlight any difficulties to the UNGA. It suggests that the UN “may still take cues” from those ideas in considering ways to implement the major agreements of 2015. [Updated overview of the major international economic and policy challenges for equitable and inclusive sustained economic growth and sustainable development, and of the role of the United Nations in addressing these issues in the light of the New International Economic Order: Report of Secretary-General] [Declaration on the Establishment of a New International Economic Order]

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