The role of the Middle-Income Countries (MICs) play in the global economic scenario has led the international community to review the configuration of the development cooperation system. On the one hand, MICs still face considerable structural deficits that affect their process of development; on the other, international community needs MICs to participate more intensively in the international agenda. Despite an increase in economic growth and demographic, MICs are still developing countries with major domestic development challenges, such as inequality, lack of access to basic services and vulnerability both at the individual and collective levels.
In a global context of intensified innovation and learning, shorter product cycles, kaleidoscopic comparative advantage, and accelerated technological change, MICs need to learn fast how to build productive and innovative capabilities, diversify their economic base, and address the plethora of market barriers and imperfections and institutional weaknesses. They also have to foster inclusive and sustainable industrial development, energy and material efficiency and effectiveness, energy intensity and the shift to low-carbon consumption and production patterns, as mandated by the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development and the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). As such, MICs are still in need of development cooperation for achieving higher levels of economic and social growth.
Non-Aligned Movement has acknowledged that official development assistance is still essential for a number of middle-income countries and that it has a role to play in targeted areas, taking into account the needs and domestic resources of these countries. NAM has welcomed the adoption of United Nations General Assembly resolution 68/222 of 20 December 2013 on “Development Cooperation with Middle Income Countries”. The resolution states that there is no “one-size-fits-all” approach to development and that development assistance by the United Nations development system should be able to respond to the varying development needs of programme countries, including the development needs of Middle-Income Countries, and should be aligned with their national development plans and strategies in accordance with its mandates, keeping in mind the needs of the least developed countries. The resolution further recognises that that official development assistance is still essential for a number of middle-income countries and that it has a role to play in targeted areas, taking into account the needs and domestic resources of these countries.
In line with the UNGA Resolution 68/222 of 20 December 2013, NAM has also welcomed the solidarity of middle-income countries with other developing countries, in particular the financial, technical, technology transfer and capacity-building support being provided by middle-income countries, particularly to the least developed countries, through South-South cooperation and triangular cooperation, while stressing that South-South cooperation is a complement to, and not a substitute for, North-South cooperation.
NAM underlines the importance of international support, through various forms, that is well aligned with national priorities to address the development needs of middle-income countries, including through capacity-building. In this regard NAM also believes that the United Nations development system should make efforts to continue its on-going efforts to mainstream support to South-South cooperation and triangular cooperation.
The Heads of State or Government of NAM Member States have also emphasized the need for the UN to conduct comprehensive review of existing practices of the international cooperation system, including the UN Funds, programmes and agencies, the international financial institutions and other international organization, including the organization for Economic Cooperation and Development, on their development cooperation with middle income countries, with a view to achieving more effective development cooperation and fostering international support for the development of these countries.