strategy

Fostering economic cooperation among developing countries

Synonyms:
Improving economic cooperation among developing countries
Developing economic cooperation between developing countries
Supporting economic cooperation among developing countries
Description:
Economic cooperation among developing countries (ECDC) and regional and subregional economic integration retain their full relevance. A new potential is growing in certain developing countries as they become major foreign investors and major manufacturers and exporters. There is therefore increased scope for cooperation among developing countries to expand mutual trade and investment and tighten industrial and technological cooperation.
Context:
Stronger economic cooperation among developing countries has long been accepted as an important component in promoting economic growth and technological capabilities and in accelerating development in the developing world. The efforts of the developing countries to promote economic cooperation among themselves should therefore be enhanced and continue to be supported by the international community.

Subregional and regional integration offers a multisectoral framework of cooperation which combines the tools of trade expansion with cooperation in respect of investment, services, transport, customs facilitation and other areas which mutually enhance each other's effectiveness. Producers can benefit from economies of scale. Subregional integration is a means to diversify into new export products, to encourage many new firms to export for the first time, to gain experience on the regional market, and to become competitive in certain branches where the regional market exceeds the threshold of cost effectiveness. Subregional integration can therefore constitute a major stage in the learning process for attaining international competitiveness and, in certain industries, a phase in the process leading towards later expansion towards world markets. It can also strengthen the position of members in trade negotiations.

This strategy features in the framework of Agenda 21 as formulated at UNCED (Rio de Janeiro, 1992), now coordinated by the United Nations Commission on Sustainable Development and implemented through national and local authorities.

Implementation:
Developing countries have made considerable efforts to strengthen economic cooperation among themselves and such efforts have been supported by the international community, notably through UNCTAD.

The [South Summit], to be held in Havana in 2000, should mark a major turning point in the field of ECDC and in the enhancement of North-South relations.

Counter Claim:
The potential of economic cooperation among developing countries (ECDC) is still a long way from being realized. The reason for failure is to large extent the undiversified nature of production and export structures in the South which creates a tendency in countries to seek protection for more or less the same types of industry. Another reason is a lack of adequate transport and communication infrastructure, monetary and financial instruments and business links between developing countries.
Subjects:
Economic
Development
Reform
Type Classification:
D: Detailed strategies