Achieving the ambitious targets of the 2030 Agenda and adapting to the changing global context will require engagement from all stakeholders at all levels and in all countries, leveraging their diverse and unique advantages. South-South cooperation and triangular cooperation remain important cornerstones of development activities and will be vital modalities for action as complements to North-South cooperation. Just as the global landscape has been transformed in recent years, so, too, have the avenues for South-South and triangular cooperation.
As outlined in the 1978 Buenos Aires Plan of Action (BAPA), South-South cooperation is an expression of solidarity between countries of the South. Initially focused largely on technical cooperation, capacity-building and knowledge exchange, recent developments in South-South cooperation have included increased volumes of South- South trade, South-South flows of foreign direct investment, movements towards regional integration, technology transfers, sharing of solutions and experts, and other forms of exchange. A number of developing countries have been providing preferential treatment to least developed countries’ products. This trend towards South-South cooperation is likely to continue, with the share of traditional DAC ODA declining as a proportion of all flows to developing countries. This trend is also accompanied by the growing interest of traditional donors towards South-South and, more specifically, Triangular Cooperation as a means of increasing the value added and efficiency of their aid contributions.
The Global South-South Development (GSSD) Expo is a United Nations’ annual high-profile forum organized by the United Nations Office for South-South Cooperation (UNOSSC) in its capacity as the General Assembly-mandated global and United Nations system-wide coordinator and facilitator for South-South and triangular cooperation. It is designed to showcase evidence-based successful development solutions and initiatives. The Nairobi outcome document adopted at the previous High-level United Nations Conference on South-South Cooperation, held in Nairobi, Kenya, in 2009 and endorsed by the General Assembly in its resolution 64/222, refers to the Expo as a source of support for closer links among South-South centres of excellence, institutions, and regional and subregional groupings, among others.
The Ninth GSSD Expo 2017 under the theme of South-South Cooperation in the Era of Economic, Social and Environmental Transformation: Road to the 40th Anniversary of the Adoption of the Buenos Aires Plan of Action (BAPA+40) is to be hosted by the Government of the Republic of Turkey during 27 to 30 November in Antalya.
Objective of the Ministerial Meeting
The High-level Ministerial Meeting is organized in the framework of the partnership initiative on South-South and Triangular Cooperation for Agricultural Development and Enhanced Food Security (SSTC-ADFS) jointly supported by the International Fund for Agricultural Development (IFAD), the Islamic Development Bank (IsDB), and the United Nations Office for South-South Cooperation (UNOSSC).
The Meeting will be an opportunity for the leadership of the ministries of agriculture of Algeria, Hungary, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Morocco, Sudan, Tajikistan, Tunisia, Turkey, and Uzbekistan to take stock of progress made by their respective Ministries through the participation in the SSTC-ADFS partnership initiative, as well as to express their views as to the possible options to continue the partnership beyond the current round of SSTC-ADFS partnership initiative.
The Meeting will also be an opportunity for the distinguished high-level participants to discuss practical ways of promoting successful home-grown solutions and national expertise of the participating countries in the thematic areas supported by the SSTC-ADFS initiative including management of farmer-based organizations, effective water resources management, agricultural biotechnology, livestock and horticulture development, and others.
The Meeting is expected to result in establishing a practical platform for future collaboration at policy level, in outlining the plan of action for future cooperation and in increasing the countries’ ownership and leadership within the initiative. It is also expected that the high-level participants will provide strong political impetus for specific initiatives and policies to be adopted by participating countries and their development partners with a view of advancing South-South Cooperation in the context of the national priorities and with intention to provide South-South investment opportunities for the private sector.
The High-level Ministerial Meeting on South-South and Triangular Cooperation for Agricultural Development and Enhanced Food Security will be organized on 29 November 2017 in Antalya, Turkey as the side event during the Global South-South Development EXPO 2017.
Background Information on SSTC-ADFS Partnership Initiative
The initiative on South-South and Triangular Cooperation for Agricultural Development and Enhanced Food Security intends to offer a holistic approach to further strengthening the positions from which the participating countries address the South-South Cooperation agenda in pursuing their individual and shared priorities in agricultural development and food security.
The project’s main focus is on further advancing the South-South Cooperation among the participating countries as well as other countries in the Middle East, North Africa, Europe and Central Asia and beyond through identification, pilot-testing, and documentation of successful models and approaches ready for replication.
It is expected that as a result of implementation of the initiative, sustainable model mechanisms will be put in place that would contribute to further enhancing the participating countries’ favorable environment for continued dynamic growth in their respective shares of intra- and interregional cooperation flows.
The activities of the initiative and the respective project are organized around three key mutually-reinforcing components that are geared towards the achievement of the overall goal (please refer to Figure 1 below).
Overall, it is essential that the support in the framework of the proposed initiative is to be provided on a demand-driven basis. The initiative therefore remains flexible in responding to the changing national-level priorities of participating countries with respect to advancing the South-South and Triangular Cooperation in Agricultural Development while maintaining the overall initial focus.
Gender equality, while being a core development objective in its own right is also a smart way to achieve greater development impact. Greater gender equality can enhance productivity, improve development outcomes for the next generations, and make institutions more representative. The initiative will, therefore, consider gender equality as one of its core driving principles.
Subject to the consultations and agreements to be reached with respective national government counterparts the initiative initially supported by the International Fund for Agricultural Development and the United Nations Office for South-South Cooperation offered its services to four countries including Algeria, Morocco, Turkey and Uzbekistan. In addition, Hungary expressed interest to participate as a solution-provider in the area of agricultural biotechnology. Later Kyrgyzstan, Sudan, Tajikistan, and Tunisia expressed interest and were invited to join the initiative with the support of the Islamic Development Bank.