By Martin Khor
A serious impasse emerged in the preparatory committee of UNCTAD XIII, which is tasked with preparing the draft outcome document that Ministers are scheduled to adopt at the end of UNCTAD XIII in Doha on 21-26 April.
While the previous two or three conferences were rather tame affairs, it looks like UNCTAD XIII (whose general theme is development-centred globalization) will be more difficult, with the organisation’s future scope of work and influence at stake.
UNCTAD was set up in 1964 to support developing countries to strengthen their weak position in international economic structures, and to design national development strategies.
It became a kind of secretariat on behalf of developing countries, providing a small pro-development balance to the huge organisations dominated by the developed countries, such as the OECD, the IMF and World Bank.
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