LDC5

Negotiations are advancing swiftly to conclude the draft "Doha Programme of Action for Least Developed Countries", which has evolved into a strikingly weakened outcome document, said sources familiar with the development.

The draft Doha Programme of Action (DPOA) for the decade 2022-2031 will be adopted by the upcoming Fifth United Nations Conference on the Least Developed Countries (LDC5), scheduled for 23-27 January 2022 in Doha, Qatar, at the Heads of State/Government level.

With preparations underway for the Fifth United Nations Conference on the Least Developed Countries (LDC5) being held in 23-27 January 2022, the co-chairs of the Preparatory Committee (PrepCom), have convened two consultations with CSOs, one on 20 May and one on 28 July.

Introducing the second consultation, the co-chairs reiterated interest in CSO perspectives and participation throughout the LDC5 process:

Roberto Bissio, coordinator of Social Watch, participated in the Consultation of Civil Society with Member States, 2nd Preparatory Committee Meeting for the Fifth United Nations Conference on the Least Developed Countries (LDC5) that took place on Wednesday July 28, 2021.

Forty years ago the least developed countries were promised acceptable minimum standards of living for their peoples by the end of the 20th century. But developed countries, instead of providing the promised finances, technology and capacity building made their fate worse, adding climate change and vaccine hoarding to the long list of challenges. As a new UN Summit for the LDCs is being prepared, Third World Network and Social Watch submitted a joint text with concrete proposals of what needs to be done to not leave the poor countries behind... again.

“We are in the midst of an unprecedented crisis. The severity of its impact is being felt globally. The LDCs are bearing its heaviest brunt. They have weak infrastructures, and a serious lack of capacity to cope with internal and external shocks.”

-- H.E. Rabab Fatima, Permanent Representative of Bangladesh and Co-chair of the Fifth UN Conference on LDCs (LDC5) Preparatory Committee

The Fifth United Nations Conference on the Least Developed Countries (LDC5) will be held In Doha, Qatar in January 2022. Preparations are already underway to negotiate the Outcome Document to be adopted in Doha, which will serve as a new 10-year Programme of Action (PoA) for the LDCs.

On 20 May 2021, Co-Chairs of the LDC5 Preparatory Committee bureau--Rabab Fatima, Permanent Representative of Bangladesh and Bob Rae, Permanent Representative of Canada--facilitated a virtual consultation with Civil Society Organizations (CSOs), designed to address policy prescriptions that LDC5 must deliver to meet the needs of people and planet.

The United Nations and Member States begin the 2021 calendar confronted with the need to address the ongoing COVID-19 crisis and growing global inequalities. Despite the WHO’s efforts to make the COVID-19 vaccine “affordable and accessible for all” through the ACT Accelerator and calls by CSOs and UN leadership and world leaders for a People’s Vaccine (a global public good free from Intellectual Property Rights), the global vaccine distribution/rollout has been dominated by wealthy, developed countries, with little if any vaccines available for small and medium developing countries.

The COVID-19 pandemic has resulted in the Least Developed Countries (LDCs) this year experiencing their worst economic performance in 30 years, the United Nations Conference on Trade and Development (UNCTAD) has said.

In its Least Developed Countries Report 2020, released on 3 December, UNCTAD said that while the pandemic had (at least initially) a less-than-catastrophic health impact on the LDCs, its economic repercussions have been ruinous.

In 2020, the COVID-19 pandemic led to LDC economies experiencing their strongest economic shock in several decades.

The Least Developed Countries (LDCs) have been hit hard by the decline in world trade triggered by the COVID-19 pandemic, with the value of LDC merchandise exports falling by 16% during the first half of 2020, the World Trade Organization has said.

In a report to a meeting of the WTO Sub-Committee on LDCs last week (WT/COMTD/LDC/W/68), the WTO Secretariat said that data from 97 economies, which include most of LDCs' key trading partners, show that the value of LDC merchandise exports dropped by 21% during March-June 2020 year-on-year.

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