A UN conference to formulate recommendations to fuel development in key sectors is set to open here on November 29, 2008. The four-day event will be the first major conference to discuss the impact of the global economic slowdown.
The meeting is a follow-up to the International Conference on Financing for Development that took place in 2002 in Mexico. Heads of state, government ministers, top officials from the World Bank and IMF, and financial experts from international organisations will attend the meet.
UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon has invited heads of state to an advance meeting on November 28, co-hosted by the Emir H H Sheikh Hamad bin Khalifa Al Thani, to discuss responses to the economic slowdown. The Emir, who is also the president of the General Assembly of the conference, will address the opening session.
Kemal Dervis, Administrator of the UN Development Programme remarked that the Doha conference was taking place at a “very difficult” time. The potentially serious consequences of the crisis for development, he said, stress the need to act to prevent the financial crisis from becoming a human crisis. The Doha meeting, in this context, takes on added significance, agencies quoted him as saying.
The Doha conference culminates a year of extraordinary turmoil in the financial markets. It also has been a year of heightened UN activity on development, including the 12th UN Conference on Trade and Development and the formation of a system-wide task force on the global food crisis in the first half of 2008.
The conference will include eight plenary meetings, which will be held on Saturday and Sunday.
The conference will also feature six interactive multi-stakeholder round tables on six major thematic areas. Each round table will be open to participation by representatives of all member states; 21 representatives of observers, relevant entities of the United Nations system and other accredited intergovernmental organisations; seven representatives of accredited civil society organisations; and seven representatives of accredited business sector entities.
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