Donors should honour their aid for trade pledges to developing countries despite the economic crisis, said OECD Secretary-General Angel Gurría as he opened the OECD Policy Dialogue on Aid for Trade, held in Paris on 3 November 2008.
In the midst of this financial crisis of global proportions, development aid budgets will be one of the areas of public spending under pressure as donor countries face up to the fiscal effort needed to restore the financial system. Despite these difficult circumstances, we must keep protecting and strengthening our development commitments, according to Mr. Gurría.
As the financial crisis deepens and spreads, a decisive policy action is needed to restore confidence and restart the flow of credit, according to Mr.Gurría.
Given that the majority of the world’s population lives in cities accounting for 60 to 80 percent of emissions, cities are key actors in our efforts to achieve long-term sustainable solutions to the global climate change challenge, according to Mr. Gurría.
In the lead-up to joining the European Union, Hungary made significant progress in reducing air and water pollution and protecting its nature and biodiversity, according to Mr. Gurría. However, he recommended that Hungary redouble its efforts, in order to further reduce pollution and use energy and raw materials more efficiently.
Governments which are successful at reforming empower their people to make the most of globalisation, creating a favourable environment for education, for business, for innovation and for sustainable development, according to Mr. Gurría.
According to A. Gurría, climate change is a global challenge demanding a global solution. The will to implement the policies that will bring us to a low-carbon future is gaining momentum. Now is the time to reach a climate agreement. Doing so will require the commitment of all stakeholders.
In his remarks, Mr. Gurría stated that the Accra Agenda for Action represents a significant step forward and presents donors and partners with a series of new concrete measures to accelerate movement towards agreed development goals.
In his remarks at the 13th World Water Congress, Mr. Gurría underlined that managing and securing access to water and sanitation for all is one of the world’s biggest challenges and needs a global response.
In his remarks delivered at the APEC Structural Reform Ministerial Meeting, Mr. Gurría explained that designing structural reform has been at the core of the OECD’s mission since its inception, to promote a better functioning of the global economy and raise living standards in member and partner countries. Now the OECD has gone one step further, trying to figure out how reform can be successfully implemented.