Wednesday, April 24, 2024

Malawi leader Chakwera urges LDCs to ‘walk together’ to achieve middle-income status

Chakwera with UN Secretary General Antonio Gutturres

In Doha, Qatar, Malawi President Lazarus Chakwera has called on participating Least Developed Countries (LDCs) at the LDC5 conference, to walk together in order to achieve meaningful sustainable development and ably graduate to middle-income economies. Chakwera made the remarks on Saturday during the leaders’ summit for the LCDs currently underway in Doha, Qatar.

The Malawi leader said none of the countries would like to remain in LDCs but looking for ways to become middle-income countries and hence, for meaningful development in the LDCs, such countries must walk together to achieve progress and sustainable development.

“Countries in the LDCs need to walk together to achieve graduation and sustainable development and to bring the economy back on track. Therefore, the Doha Plan of Action is not mere wishful thinking but action based.

“I call upon developed countries to support the Least Developed Countries and those graduating with a graduation package so that the Doha Plan of Action does not become mere rhetoric,” said Chakwera.

Chakwera thanked the government of Qatar for hosting the conference saying the city of Qatar is a testimony of a vision turned reality and what has been achieved by Qatar within a space of 25 years, should be a great inspiration to all LDCs.

Secretary-General for United Nations, Antonio Guterres said economic development is impossible when countries are starved for economic resources, drowning in debt, and still struggling with the historic injustice of an unequal COVID-19 response.

He said Human development is impossible when education, health care and social protection systems are struggling — or non-existent. And when women are denied their rightful place at the table across every aspect of civil, economic, and political life.

“A thriving business community and the creation of decent jobs cannot happen if economies are stuck in first gear — exporting raw materials without opportunities for structural transformation to rapidly move up the value chain.


“Combatting climate catastrophe that you did nothing to cause is impossible when the cost of capital is sky-high and the financial support you receive to mitigate and adapt to the destruction is a drop in the bucket,” said Guterres.

The UN Secretary-General further said in the midst of these injustices, the United Nations is working with LDCs to develop smooth transition strategies, based on tailored support for the graduation process saying it cannot allow countries to fall back down the development ladder after working so hard to climb it.

“That’s why the Doha Programme of Action includes an online university to provide your countries with access to science, expertise and technology to develop more innovative and diverse economies and workforces.

“At this time of widespread food insecurity, the creation of a food stockholding system for Least-Developed Countries will be another tangible outcome of this Summit to combat hunger and skyrocketing food prices,” he said.

The Doha Programme of Action also includes the establishment of an international investment support centre to help least-developed and graduated countries attract foreign investment.

About 2000 representatives which include government officials, and UN delegates among other development partners are attending the conference.

The category of least developed countries (LDCs) was officially established in 1971 by the UN General Assembly with a view to attracting special international support for the most vulnerable and disadvantaged members of the UN family.

Among the delegates from Malawi include President Chakwera, Minister of Information Moses Kunkuyu, Minister of Foreign Affairs Nancy Tembo and Minister of Natural Resources and Climate Change Dr Michael Usi as well as members of the Civil Society and private sectors.

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