SIDS

[UNCTAD Seminar] Building Economic Resilience in Small Island Developing States

UNCTAD and the Commonwealth Secretariat will host an online seminar on “Building economic resilience in small island developing States” on 4 March 2021, from 3 to 5 p.m. CET.

Register here!

Background

The coronavirus disease of 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic has exacerbated the significant vulnerability of small island developing States to external shocks and has unleashed an unprecedented socioeconomic and financial crisis. The pandemic has also compounded the lingering effects of the financial crisis of 2008/09, following which many small island developing States borrowed to underwrite deficit spending and spur economic growth. Already burdened with high debt service costs at the start of the pandemic, many small island developing States lack the fiscal space to respond to the extraordinary needs created by the pandemic.

To break this cycle of recurring crises and incomplete recoveries, small island developing States strive to build their resilience to environmental and economic shocks. In support of this important quest, in 2014, member States, in the SIDS Accelerated Modalities of Action (SAMOA) Pathway, reaffirmed their “commitment to take urgent and concrete action to address the vulnerability of small island developing States”, taking into account their “individual country circumstances”. Economic development strategies provide a blueprint for Governments and incentives for the private sector to invest in new industries and infrastructure, ideally spurring a cycle of economic growth and structural transformation, towards a resilient economy and sustainable long-term development. In this context, UNCTAD and the Commonwealth Secretariat will hold this seminar for member States on building economic resilience in small island developing States, to present their ongoing work and exchange views with member States on alternative development strategies for small island developing States and other small States.

The specific objectives of the seminar are to:

Inform SIDS and small States of assistance provided by UNCTAD and the Commonwealth; Foster debate on “alternative development strategies for diverse SIDS” based on joint UNCTAD-Commonwealth research; and Identify next steps, including further research, policy analysis and technical assistance.

Speakers:

  • Mr. Paul Akiwumi Director, Division for Africa, LDCs and Special Programmes (ALDC), UNCTAD
  • Dr. Arjoon Suddhoo Deputy Secretary-General, Commonwealth Secretariat
  • HE Mr. Chad Blackman PR of Barbados to the UN in Geneva Coordinator of the SIDS Group in Geneva
  • Mr. Pierre Encontre Chief, SIDS and Status Issues Section, UNCTAD
  • Dr. Ruth Kattumuri Senior Director, Economic, Youth & Sustainable Development Directorate, Commonwealth Secretariat
  • Mr. Kris Terauds Economist, SIDS and Status Issues Section, UNCTAD
  • Mr. Paul Akiwumi UNCTAD

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CoNGO Notes: For more information on the NGO Committee on Financing for Development, please visit ngosonffd.org. For more information on the NGO Committee on Sustainable Development-NY, please visit ngocsd-ny.org. For more information on the NGO Committee on Sustainable Development-Vienna, please visit ngocsdvienna.org.