India on Thursday at the United Nations (UN) underlined the need to enhance support for South-South cooperation and ensuring that resources meant for core development programmes are not re-purposed.
Speaking at the UN General Assembly (UNGA), India's First Secretary Sneha Dubey said that it is important that development activities revolve around national ownership and leadership, and give due consideration to national development priorities.
"The UN system must focus on those tasks it is uniquely qualified to deliver. And these should be supported with adequate and predictable volume of flexible resources," she said.
Stressing on the need to enhance support for South-South cooperation, the Indian diplomat said the UN must ensure that it must ensure that resources meant for core development programmes are not re-purposed.
"UN Development System needs to amplify its impact while working to enhance support for South-South cooperation. If we are to be on track to achieve 2030 Agenda, it must be ensured that resources meant for core development programmes are not re-purposed. If so, they need to be brought back on track," she said.
The Indian diplomat also noted that the Covid-19 pandemic has tested the resilience of multilateral institutions; and the Global South has been largely fending for themselves. "In these circumstances, South-South Cooperation has become even more crucial."
First Secretary Dubey also highlighted Prime Minister Narendra Modi's call for the "One Earth One Health" approach.
She further added Indian development partnership with Global South is designed to release the full potential of developing countries."India has been very clear that South-South Cooperation, particularly Lines of Credit and soft loans, should not result in placing an undue burden on the recipients."
India's efforts within the realm of SSC have included providing annual training slots to over 160 countries under our flagship programme of Indian Technical and Economic Cooperation; offering concessional Lines of Credit of over USD 30 billion and also grant assistance to numerous developing countries, the Indian diplomat noted.
"We would also like to highlight the USD 150 million India-UN Development Partnership Fund, managed by UNOSSC, that continues to support South-owned and South-led sustainable development projects with a focus on LDCs, LLDCs and SIDS. In four years, the Fund has a portfolio of 66 projects in 52 countries. As part of Covid response, the India-UNDP Fund has commissioned projects in 15 countries ranging from Antigua & Barbuda in the Caribbean to Palau in the South Pacific," the First Secretary Dubey said.
"Another unique mechanism demonstrating the relevance and vitality of South-South Cooperation is the India-Brazil-South Africa Fund. Since its inception, it has disbursed about USD 40 million, supporting 35 development projects in 31 countries, a majority of them in LDCs."
She also noted India has taken the lead, inter alia, in the establishment of the International Solar Alliance and the Coalition for Disaster Resilient Infrastructure. "We must raise our collective voice for recovery, resilience and reform to ensure that we go back to the path of development and of achieving the SDGs."