Social Watch statement on MDG Summit




Social Watch on the UN MDG Review Summit: "We need justice, not business as usual"

Ahead of the UN High Level Summit being held to review progress towards the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) in New York in September, NGO Social Watch has released a statement calling for courage and bold leadership in global development efforts instead of “business as usual”.

Despite the fact that the first MDG is a promise to reduce by half by 2015 the proportion of people living in poverty and with hunger, their number has now swelled to a staggering 1.5 billion.

Social Watch’s evaluation of the efforts made by developing countries so far is damning: “Some progress has been made since in cancelling the bilateral and multilateral external debts of some of the poorest countries, but this is far from enough. On trade, there are no positive moves. A development round of trade negotiations started in Doha in September 2001. Its development component is insignificant and even so is still far from being concluded. Technology transfer has been made even more expensive by the strict enforcement of intellectual property rules. Foreign aid has not increased at all. It was 0.44 per cent of the income of the donor countries in 1992 and 0.43 per cent in 2008. One fourth of the total aid goes to just six countries: Afghanistan, Iraq, China, India, Indonesia and Vietnam,” the statement says.

It continues “‘If the poor were a bank, they would have been rescued’, is the sarcastic comment that many people make when the additional money needed to achieve the MDGs (estimated at around $100 billion a year) is compared with the trillions of dollars disbursed in the last two years in the richest countries to rescue failed banks and try to reverse the effects of the financial crisis.”

“In times of unprecedented crisis, courage to be bold and innovative is required from leaders. Ten years ago the Millennium Declaration promised “a more peaceful, prosperous and just world”. Social Watch is committed to help citizens from around the world to hold their governments accountable to that promise”, it concludes.

Read the full statement at: Social Watch

2010-A-Social Watch statement.pdf329.94 KB