Summary report, 17–23 May 2000

WSSD+5 Preparatory Committee (PrepCom) Intersessional Meetings

The Preparatory Committee (PrepCom) for the Special Session of the General Assembly entitled "World Summit for Social Development (WSSD) and beyond: Achieving social development for all in a globalizing world" reconvened from 17-23 May 2000, to resume consideration of Parts I and III of the proposed outcome document (A/ AC.253/L.5/Rev.3). Part I is a political declaration, and Part III is a set of further actions and initiatives to implement the 10 commitments made at the 1995 Social Summit in Copenhagen. Final text for Part II, an overall review and appraisal of the implementation of the outcome of WSSD, was negotiated in February and March by the 38th UN Commission for Social Development (CSD-38). The proposed outcome document will be presented to the Special Session at its meeting in Geneva, from 26-30 June 2000.

The intersessional meetings followed the same organization of work as the PrepCom, with Working Group I discussing Commitments 1 and 7-9, Working Group II debating Commitments 2-6 and 10, and Working Group III negotiating the draft political declaration. On Wednesday, 17 May, Working Group II Chair Koos Richelle (Netherlands) opened the meeting, noting that 32 heads of state have confirmed they will attend the Special Session. On Thursday, 18 May, PrepCom Chair Cristian Maquieira (Chile) called on delegates to strive to leave, at most, only 10 or 12 highly political paragraphs for the Special Session to negotiate.

By the close of negotiations on Tuesday, 23 May, delegates had agreed on 183 paragraphs and sub-paragraphs, while 127 remain pending. Progress came in fits and starts, with delegates deeply divided over issues such as resources, governance, trade and political will. In some sessions, the G-77/China broke with past practice and did not speak as a group. There was also no consensus on holding additional intersessional meetings of the PrepCom. The G-77/China preferred to meet in New York for a week in June after the five-year review of the Fourth World Conference on Women, while the EU and JUSCANZ proposed meeting in Geneva immediately before the WSSD Special Session.


In December 1992, the UN General Assembly (GA) adopted Resolution 47/92, which called for the convening of a world summit for social development and set in motion the process of organizing a meeting of Heads of State to tackle the critical problems of poverty, unemployment and social integration. A Preparatory Committee (PrepCom) was established, under the chairmanship of Amb. Juan Somava (Chile), to negotiate the Copenhagen Declaration on Social Development and a Programme of Action (POA). The PrepCom met three times in February and October 1994, and January 1995.

The World Summit for Social Development convened in Copenhagen from 6-12 March 1995, bringing together over 118 world leaders. Despite difficult debates, Summit delegates managed to reach consensus on the Copenhagen Declaration and POA. The Copenhagen Declaration assessed the current social situation and reasons for convening the WSSD, listed principles and goals, and spelled out 10 commitments: to enhance the enabling environment for social development and to promote further initiatives for poverty eradication, full employment initiatives, social integration, equality and equity between women and men, universal and equitable access to quality education and health services, accelerated development in Africa and the LDCs, inclusion of social development goals in structural adjustment programmes (SAPs), increased resources for social development and international cooperation for social development.

The POA contained five chapters and outlined actions to be achieved in each area: an enabling environment for social development; eradication of poverty; the expansion of productive employment and the reduction of unemployment; social integration; and implementation and follow-up. It also called on the GA to hold a special session in the year 2000 for an overall review and appraisal of the implementation of the outcome of the WSSD, and to consider further actions.


In 1997, the GA established a PrepCom to prepare for the five-year review and appraisal of the implementation of the Copenhagen Declaration and POA. The PrepCom, chaired by Cristian Maquieira, held its organizational session in May 1998 and its first substantive session in May 1999. It initiated discussions on preliminary assessment of the implementation of the 10 commitments and on further initiatives, and adopted a decision on the role of the UN system, inviting all relevant organs and specialized agencies of the UN system and other concerned organizations to submit review reports and proposals for further action and initiatives. The PrepCom also decided on further procedures and preparations for the Special Session, including the convening of open-ended, intersessional informal consultations from 30 August - 3 September 1999 and 21-25 February 2000. The PrepCom set modalities for accreditation of NGOs at the Special Session, and recommended several items for adoption by the GA at its 55th session, including the title of the Special Session, "World Summit for Social Development (WSSD) and beyond: Achieving social development for all in a globalizing world."


At its May 1998 session, the PrepCom invited the 38th session of the Commission for Social Development (CSD-38), chaired by Zola Skweyiya (South Africa), to consider the "Overall review and appraisal of the implementation of the outcome of the World Summit for Social Development: Draft agreed conclusions" (E/CN.5/2000/ L.8). The overall review of the outcome of the WSSD was intended to be the Commissions contribution to WSSD+5. It contains seven parts: an introduction on developments, challenges and priorities since the WSSD; poverty eradication; full employment; social integration; Africa and the LDCs; mobilization of resources for social development; and capacity building to implement social policies and programmes. The document states that the goals of development are to improve living conditions and empower people to participate fully in economic, political and social arenas. It concludes that while efforts have been made, progress has been uneven and further attention is required.

CSD-38 was unable to conclude its negotiations during its 8-17 February 2000 session, and extra sessions were held during 21-25 February and on 6, 9 and 17 March 2000. A primary sticking point was a reference to economic sanctions and unilateral measures not in accordance with international law and the United Nations Charter. The final text sets a precedent by concluding that sanctions and unilateral measures can impede social development. There was also disagreement over three paragraphs related to resource mobilization, with final text acknowledging that official development assistance (ODA) has continued to decline and only four countries now meet the agreed target of 0.7% of GNP for ODA. The review also notes that ODA has been found more effective when countries are committed to growth-oriented strategies combined with poverty eradication goals and strategies.


The PrepCom met in its second substantive session at UN headquarters in New York from 3-14 April 2000. Its main task was to negotiate proposals for a draft political declaration, intended to serve as a statement of affirmation of the Copenhagen Declaration and POA, and to continue work on the further actions and initiatives. Structured around the 10 commitments contained within the Copenhagen Declaration, it is based in part on a set of 26 reports submitted to the Secretariat by organs and specialized agencies of the UN system and other concerned organizations and integrated in the "Compilation of the summaries and proposals for further action provided by the United Nations System" (A/AC.253/CRP.2).

At the PrepCom, delegates also discussed the draft provisional agenda and organizational matters (A/AC.253/L.16) and the list of speakers (E/CN.6/2000/PC.9) for the Special Session.

Working Group I finished an initial reading of the further actions and initiatives for Commitments 1, 7, 8 and 9. Working Group II completed first and second readings of much of Commitments 2-6 and 10. Working Group III nearly succeeded in finishing negotiations on the draft political declaration, but talks broke down at the end over paragraphs on poverty, workers rights, governance, debt and international cooperation. About half of the text was agreed.


The following summary covers only text of the proposed outcome document (A/AC.253/L.5/Rev.3) negotiated between 17-23 May 2000.


On Monday and Tuesday, 22-23 May, Working Group III met to consider outstanding paragraphs in the draft political declaration. Chair Bagher Asadi (Iran) appealed to delegates to discuss the version of the text dated 7 April, 6:45 pm, rather than the version from 7 April, 1:00 pm. The EU, G-77/CHINA, PAKISTAN, CUBA, and CHINA preferred the 1:00 pm version. The US said they could work from the 6:45 pm version, and noted the outstanding issue of workers rights as the main sticking point in paragraphs 5 and 5 bis.

Starting with the later version, the EU proposed deleting paragraph 5 bis on the condition that language be added to paragraph 5 on reaffirming the will to respect, promote and realize the principles contained in the ILO Declaration on Fundamental Principles and Rights at Work and its follow-up. PAKISTAN did not support specific mention of ILO conventions, and said that if the EU proposed qualifying language on employment, then qualifying language on poverty eradication should also be included. The G-77/CHINA added references to: mobilizing new and additional resources at the international level; full respect for the basic rights of workers, including the rights of migrant workers; full respect for non-discrimination, tolerance and diversity; and equitable distribution of wealth, including, inter alia, realization of an equitable multilateral trading system free from non-trade barriers. Delegates agreed that with these proposals, which remain bracketed, 5 bis and an earlier G-77/China formulation of paragraph 5 could be deleted.

The EU added language on reaffirming attachment to the principles of good governance and rule of law, which also remains bracketed. Subsequently, the Chair proposed reconciling all unresolved language by providing for full respect for fundamental principles and rights at work and retaining only language providing that social development requires not only economic activity, but also more equitable distribution of wealth within and among nations, maximizing opportunities and guaranteeing social justice, and recognizing the mutually reinforcing linkages among these elements. Delegates opposed the Chairs proposal and the text was not modified. JAPAN, supported by the EU, advocated substituting "benefits of economic growth" for wealth. The EU preferred "between economic and social development" to "among these elements." All of these alternatives remain bracketed.

In paragraph 6, on implementation, the G-77/CHINA supported EU language on inviting development of integrated, coherent and gender-sensitive social, economic and environmental policies in order to close the gap between goals and achievements, but the Group preferred "coordinated" to "coherent" and also preferred "approaches" to "policies." The US opposed "approaches." The alternatives remain bracketed.

In 6 bis, specific reference to middle-income developing countries was considered in the general context of countries dealing with debt. The EU proposed reversing the last two sentences of the paragraph, and favored language stating that the full financing and implementation of the enhanced heavily indebted poor countries (HIPC) initiative, in the context of poverty reduction strategies, are essential for realizing its potential. The US opposed specific references to the HIPC initiative, preferring a more general reference to the debt problems of developing countries. Chair Asadi proposed a reformulation stating that the debt problems of middle-income developing countries also need to be addressed with a view to resolving their potential long-term debt sustainability. These references remain bracketed.

In paragraph 9, Chair Asadi asked delegates to consider his proposed version from 7 April, 6:50 pm, representing a clean version of this text. He noted that the first three sentences were identical in both the 6:45 pm and 6:50 pm versions, while the last two sentences remained bracketed in the earlier version. ALGERIA noted that many had expressed preference to work from the 1:00 pm text, and stated that her delegation had difficulty in principle with working from several different versions. The US said she could accept proposals from either the 6:45 pm or 6:50 pm versions, including: an EU reference to cooperation among governments and other actors, including NGOs; language proposed by Mexico on recognizing the need for reforms for a strengthened and more stable international financial system; and an EU reference on coordinated follow-up to major conventions. The EU also supported the text proposed by Mexico. The G-77/CHINA proposed, and the US opposed, reference to recognizing the need to continue to work on reforms for a transparent, accountable and stable international financial system, including democratization of the Bretton Woods Institutions, to address new challenges of development. The Chair subsequently streamlined the text to differentiate this language from the Mexico/EU/US language on continued work on reforms for a strengthened and more stable international financial system to address new challenges of development, and to identify additional language from Mexico referring to new challenges of social equity and poverty eradication. No agreement was reached and the streamlined text, with alternatives, remains bracketed.

In paragraph 10, on overall commitment to social development, delegates bracketed a Chairs proposal to add a reference to social justice.


Working Groups I and II met throughout the week on Part III of the document. Working Group I, chaired by Cristian Maquieira, discussed Commitments 7-9. Working Group II, chaired by Koos Richelle, debated Commitments 2-6 and 10.

COMMITMENT 1: ENABLING SOCIAL DEVELOPMENT: Delegates did not discuss Commitment 1.

COMMITMENT 2: POVERTY ERADICATION: In the EUs proposal for 27 bis (o), on promoting participatory poverty assessments, the EU, with the US, added language on design of anti-poverty strategies. INDIA emphasized that the G-77/China proposal supported social impact assessment based on statistics. The US added reference to age to both proposals. The references to age and both proposals remain in brackets.

In 27 bis (u), on using health policies as an instrument for poverty eradication along the lines of the WHO strategy on poverty and health, delegates debated Holy See additions on developing sustainable pro-poor health systems that focus on the major diseases affecting the poor, achieving greater equity in health financing and promoting responsible health stewardship. Norway proposed substituting "health problems" for "diseases." Both references are bracketed. The US bracketed promoting responsible health stewardship. He advocated language on the provision of and universal access to primary health care services, including reproductive and sexual health care services. The HOLY SEE preferred an alternative formula referring to provision of and universal access to basic health and social services including sexual and reproductive health and family planning services. These alternative formulas are also bracketed.

In 27 ter (a), on social protection systems, the US proposed, with the EU, reference to making coverage available. The US, with the EU, proposed, and the G-77/CHINA opposed, reference to the support of the ILO, where requested. These proposals remain bracketed.

In 27 ter (b), on developing new mechanisms to ensure the sustainability of social protection systems, CANADA suggested reference to new mechanisms as required. The EU proposed, and SENEGAL agreed, to delete text on including, where relevant, measures to ensure adequate social security contributions, through appropriate policies. The Chair proposed, with agreement from the DOMINICAN REPUBLIC, new text on the sustainability of these systems, in the appropriate country context. The G-77/CHINA included reference to aging populations and increased unemployment, and the paragraph was agreed.

In 27 quat, on improving national capacity to address food insecurity at the household level, the EU added reference to the Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) and amended language to call on governments to place food security as "an essential element" of their poverty eradication strategies. The EU and the HOLY SEE reformulated language to emphasize women's pivotal role in providing food security. The paragraph was agreed.

COMMITMENT 3: EMPLOYMENT: Delegates agreed on paragraph 36, on expanding opportunities for productive employment, including self-employment, with particular focus on small and medium-sized enterprises. In 38(a), the EU supported reference to governments ratifying ILO conventions concerning basic workers rights. The US and the G-77/CHINA preferred "strongly considering ratifying." The text remains bracketed. In 38(b) bis, delegates agreed on respecting, promoting and realizing the principles contained in the ILO Declaration on Fundamental Principles and Rights at Work and its follow-up.

Discussion on paragraph 39, on a multilateral initiative on understanding the social dimensions of globalization, and on 39 ter, on UN institutions and host countries undertaking approaches to promote and realize fundamental principles and rights at work, was referred to small group facilitation. Both paragraphs remain bracketed pending future debate.

After debate on an EU reformulation of paragraph 40, a facilitation group agreed on encouraging the private sector to respect and promote basic workers rights as defined in relevant ILO Conventions and the Declaration on the Fundamental Principles and Rights at Work and, in this context, encouraging business and employers organizations, trade unions and relevant groups in civil society, to contribute to their implementation and cooperate with governments to ensure their implementation. The text remains bracketed pending agreement from Working Group II.

In paragraph 49, on improving methods for collection and analysis of basic employment data disaggregated by, inter alia, gender, race and age, several delegations stressed a reference to race would be contrary to national laws. The EU preferred Beijing Platform for Action (PFA) language referring to age, sex, socioeconomic and other relevant indicators. INDIA questioned the reference to socioeconomic indicators. The US suggested, and the EU agreed, omitting it as other relevant indicators would encompass it. INDIA opposed "indicators" and proposed "other relevant socioeconomic categories." After the HOLY SEE deleted "other," the paragraph was agreed.

In new paragraph 42 (old 49), on considering the need for a major event on the informal sector in 2002, to be organized by the ILO in order to, inter alia, develop job opportunities, the EU suggested ending the paragraph after the reference to the ILO. Delegates agreed to this and a US proposal to refer to "the possibility of" rather than "the need for" the major event.

In paragraph 45, on measures to address employment issues of certain groups, the EU supported, and the HOLY SEE and G-77/ CHINA opposed, qualifying migrants as documented migrants. The reference to documented migrants remains bracketed. The EU withdrew its proposed 45 bis, on taking into account different contexts in developing such measures.

In paragraph 47(a), on ratification and implementation of the ILO conventions concerning equal remuneration for work of equal value and concerning discrimination in respect of employment and occupation, the US proposed language on promoting the principles of equal remuneration and elimination of discrimination and strongly considering ratification of the conventions and full implementation thereafter. Delegates agreed to promoting the principles of equal remuneration and elimination of discrimination and full implementation after ratification. The reference to ratification of ILO conventions remains bracketed.

Delegates accepted 47(b), on ensuring the right to equal pay for equal work or work of equal value for women and men. They agreed to combine elements from 47(c) and 47(e) into a new 47(c). The US proposed text on assisting women and men to reconcile competing demands of work and family by, inter alia, providing workers with the option of greater flexibility. The EU, with NORWAY, suggested replacing reference to the competing demands of work and family with reference to employment and family responsibilities. Chair Richelle, supported by NORWAY, proposed promoting more flexible working arrangements. INDIA, PAKISTAN, EGYPT, LIBYA, and CHINA called for the deletion of all language on flexibility at work, and supported ending the paragraph after reference to employment and family responsibilities. JAMAICA stated that language on work and family responsibilities was agreed in other forums and that provisions for flexibility were included in national labor laws. The EU noted that reference to flexibility was agreed text from paragraph 56(d) of the POA, and inserted text on assisting women and men to reconcile employment and family responsibilities by, inter alia, flexible working arrangements, including parental voluntary part-time employment and work-sharing, and accessible and affordable quality child-care facilities, paying particular attention to the needs of single-parent households. The EU, supported by the US and INDIA, also suggested a reference to dependent care, and the text was agreed.

In 47(d), on adopting innovative arrangements, supported, where necessary, by financial incentives, the US proposed referring to appropriate financial mechanisms instead of financial incentives. After objections from INDIA and LIBYA, delegates agreed to delete the text.

COMMITMENT 4: SOCIAL INTEGRATION: In 55 bis, on recognizing the need for a better definition of the role of non-profit organizations in social integration processes, CUBA, INDIA, PAKISTAN and ALGERIA questioned the reference to non-profit organizations. SENEGAL queried the need for new definitions. The EU, who proposed the text, underscored a reference to partnerships between non-profit organizations and governments. PAKISTAN opposed language on inviting the Commission for Social Development to discuss the issue, noting that such discussions already take place and urging translation of discussions into action. The US, INDIA and ALGERIA also opposed the CSD reference, and the EU withdrew the paragraph.

In paragraph 57, on countering the increasing dissemination of, inter alia, intolerance and racism through the media and information technology, delegates replaced a reference to pornography with "child pornography and other obscene materials," in order to satisfy the requirements of national legal systems. They removed brackets on references to religious intolerance and to discrimination based on sex and age, and the paragraph was agreed.

Old 21 bis (a) and (b) and 21 ter now follow 59 bis. Delegates agreed to 21 bis, on recognizing the contributions of indigenous people, and to 21 bis (a), on giving them an effective voice in decisions directly affecting them. In 21 bis (b), on encouraging UN agencies to develop effective consultation measures to engage indigenous people in relevant matters, INDIA proposed replacing consultative measures with programmatic measures. The text was agreed. In 21 ter, delegates agreed on reformulated language on establishing a permanent forum for indigenous people that reflects the outcome of recent consultations in Geneva. They accepted reference to establishing this forum within the mandate of ECOSOC relating to economic and social development, culture, the environment, education, health and human rights.

The DOMINICAN REPUBLIC proposed, and delegates supported, new 60 bis, on supporting research on the productive role of older persons in developing countries in order to contribute to the revision of the World Plan of Action on Aging. In paragraph 62, on creating conditions for the repatriation of refugees and providing basic social services to refugees and internally displaced persons (IDPs), THAILAND objected to an EU proposal to specify political, legal, material and social conditions. Delegates differed over placement of the phrase "upon request" in a G-77/China proposal. The EU objected to the wording as not appearing in other documents, and the US pointed out that placement suggested seeking the request of IDPs for provision of basic services. CHINA, PAKISTAN, THAILAND, the RUSSIAN FEDERATION and EGYPT supported inclusion of the reference. Delegates agreed to Pakistans proposal that the G-77/China should reformulate the language.

In paragraph 63, on the human rights and dignity of migrants, the US objected to a reference to assistance, even after MEXICO suggested consular assistance. The phrase remains bracketed. Delegates agreed to remove brackets from text on implementing the relevant provisions of the Vienna Convention on Consular Relations.

In 65 bis, a Holy See proposal on substance abuse among young people, delegates agreed on US-amended language on encouraging schools and the media, including through use of information technology and the Internet, to provide information on the dangers of substance abuse and addiction. Delegates did not reach consensus on recognizing that a stable and supportive family life can provide a vital shield against substance abuse. The EU suggested supportive family and community relationships in cooperation with professional services. JAMAICA objected, noting research that proves family life is the key element in substance abuse. PAKISTAN said in the absence of professional services in many areas, the stable family is the only source of assistance. The EU responded that it is important to recognize multiple elements and that substance abuse occurs even in stable families. The US supported the EU, but changed "family" to "home environment," and added language on the consumption of tobacco and the abuse of alcohol. PAKISTAN and the RUSSIAN FEDERATION commented that the text was becoming overburdened and unfocused. EGYPT supported a Holy See reformulation that referred first to families and then to community relationships and professional services. The text remains bracketed.

COMMITMENT 5: GENDER EQUALITY: Delegates did not discuss Commitment 5.

COMMITMENT 6: EDUCATION AND HEALTH: In agreed 74 ter, delegates worked from a Dominican Republic proposal and agreed on references to basic health services and to non-profit community-based health insurance programmes among possible methods to support the government to promote accessible primary health care for all.

In agreed paragraph 75, on taking appropriate measures to combat infectious diseases, delegates accepted Ecuadors proposal to remove brackets from a reference to support for research centers and place it at the end of the paragraph.

In 75 bis, on mitigating the adverse impacts of HIV/AIDS, the HOLY SEE proposed language on enabling everyone to protect themselves and be protected from HIV/AIDS. SOUTH AFRICA suggested reference to "everyone, especially women." Delegates debated whether to delete reference to social and economic inequalities that have resulted from the HIV/AIDS epidemic. PAKISTAN and IRAN stated that this reference shifted the focus of the paragraph. GUATEMALA and NORWAY supported inclusion of this text, noting the need to address social exclusion resulting from HIV/AIDS. The US proposed, with support from PAKISTAN, replacing existing text with language on mitigating the devastating personal, social, and economic impact of HIV/AIDS. No agreement was reached.

Delegates accepted paragraph 77, on providing support to countries with economies in transition to revitalize systems of primary health care and to promote more vigorous campaigns for health education and the promotion of healthy lifestyles.

In paragraph 80, on patent exemptions for medicines essential to public health, NORWAY suggested deleting language on production, export and import, especially by low- and middle-income countries. SOUTH AFRICA called for adding text on, inter alia, intellectual property rights under the Trade-Related Aspects of Intellectual Property Rights Agreement (TRIPs) not taking precedence over the fundamental human right to the highest attainable standard of health care, nor the ethical responsibility to provide life-saving medicines at affordable costs to developing countries and people living in poverty. The paragraph remains bracketed.

In 80 bis, on ensuring food and medicine are not used as tools for political pressure, delegates agreed to the text, and to delete it from Commitment 6, if similar language remains in Commitment 1. Brackets remain on a reference to a United Nations Literacy Decade in paragraph 81, on new international actions to support national efforts to achieve universal education and health services, pending clarification on references in other documents.

COMMITMENT 7: AFRICA AND THE LDCs: In Canadas proposed paragraph 86 bis, on concerted efforts to promote an integrated approach to sustainable development, delegates agreed to a Holy See proposal to refer to people-centered sustainable development. They could not agree on a list of issues comprising development, including, inter alia, pro-poor economic growth, universal access to basic social services and transparent and accountable governance. Both the EU and LIBYA supported retaining the paragraph, while EGYPT, with LIBYA, suggested adding ODA to the list. The EU proposed a reference to encouraging national and international efforts instead of including ODA. EGYPT responded that if "international" covers ODA, then the word "national" would reflect everything else on the list and it should be deleted. Delegates agreed to this formulation.

Delegates worked from a G-77/China proposal for paragraph 87, on international efforts for creating an enabling environment that will facilitate the integration of Africa and the LDCs into the global economy. The text was agreed with EU amendments to refer to national and international efforts and to promoting an enabling environment.

In 87(a), on debt relief initiatives, the G-77/CHINA opposed reference to the HIPC initiative, while the US said it could not agree to its deletion. BANGLADESH, with the EU and ALGERIA, supported combining 87(a) with paragraph 95, on cancellation of bilateral debt. ALGERIA, with EU support, suggested a chapeau on the debt problem and then sub-paragraphs addressing LDCs and the HIPC initiative. Delegates agreed the Chair would draft a new formulation.

Brackets remain on 87(b), on improving market access for exports, after JAPAN said it could not accept a previously negotiated formulation on improving market access, including by eliminating trade barriers and other protectionist measures, inter alia, securing tariff-free treatment. The EU noted that 87(c), on programmes for taking full advantage of the multilateral trading regime, had previously been accepted. Its brackets were dropped. The US supported an EU proposal for 87(e), on encouraging the development of venture capital funds, but objected to a G-77/China amendment referring to international cooperation, pointing out that governments cannot direct the private sector. Delegates agreed to a US proposal to refer instead to initiatives in the development of venture capital funds, and to G-77/ China text on funds in fields conducive to sustainable development.

Delegates confirmed agreement on paragraph 90, on investment in critical infrastructure services. The G-77/CHINA and the US continued to differ over 90 bis, on creation of a world solidarity fund, and it remains bracketed. The US supported the G-77/CHINA and EU on 90 ter, on strengthening food-for-work activities, and the paragraph was agreed.

Paragraph 91, on venture capital funds, was deleted following agreement on 87(e). Delegates confirmed agreement on paragraph 92, on support to South-South cooperation.

Language following paragraph 93, proposed by Norway, was split into two new sub-paragraphs. In new 93 bis, on enhancing the allocation of additional resources to education, delegates agreed to a G-77/China proposal to drop a reference to 7% of GDP, but the EU and US opposed the group's inclusion of a reference to international cooperation. Delegates agreed with an EU proposal to refer to supporting the efforts of governments, in exchange for dropping international cooperation. Similar language was agreed for new 93 ter, along with a G-77/China formulation on encouraging skilled and highly educated Africans to remain in the region and to utilize and further develop their skills.

COMMITMENT 8: STRUCTURAL ADJUSTMENT PROGRAMMES: In paragraph 103, on encouraging policy makers at all levels to reduce the need for structural adjustment programmes (SAPs) by pursuing appropriate and integrated macroeconomic policies aimed at economic expansion and social development, INDIA suggested text on the need to reduce the negative effects of SAPs. The G-77/CHINA proposed deletion. After considering a Chairs reformulation, delegates agreed to delete the paragraph.

In paragraph 104, on design and implementation of adjustment and reform programmes, the EU amended its proposal, with support from the US and JAPAN, to emphasize that governments should dialogue with civil society. The G-77/CHINA favored its formulation, containing reference to international financial institutions (IFIs) developing and maintaining an ongoing dialogue with governments. CUBA and PAKISTAN supported the G-77/China text, but agreed with the US regarding internal domestic dialogue prior to dialogue between governments and IFIs. Chair Maquieira highlighted a two-tier approach whereby governments consult with civil society and then with IFIs, and proposed redrafting the G-77/China text to underscore this double dialogue. He proposed two references: text on encouraging IFIs to develop and maintain a responsive, ongoing dialogue with governments in consultation with civil society; and language on the design, implementation and reform of SAPs through, inter alia, consultation with relevant actors and organizations of civil society. The EU supported, and ALGERIA opposed, the first reference. MEXICO and PAKISTAN supported the second proposal. JAPAN proposed alternative language on encouraging IFIs to take into account the specific circumstances of countries concerned in providing support to SAPs. Chair Maquieira stated that a new formulation would be introduced later.

In 105(c), on ensuring good governance, the G-77/CHINA proposed alternative language on ensuring transparency and accountability by both governments and IFIs for improved efficiency of SAPs. Opposing the language, the US stressed that the chapeau to paragraph 105 confines the ambit of the provision to national policies. The alternatives were left bracketed. The US, reiterating its argument on the scope of 105(c), opposed the G-77/China-proposed 105(g), on considering introduction of a debt relief arrangement as a component of SAPs and implementation of poverty reduction strategies. Supported by the EU and stressing that IFIs are addressed in other provisions, the US preferred Japans language on implementing fully and speedily the enhanced HIPC initiative in order to deliver debt relief to countries implementing poverty reduction strategies, but substituted "effectively" for "speedily." LIBYA stressed the participation of IFIs in SAPs as partners with governments and underscored that limitation to the national level would be problematic and "unjust." The EU proposed deleting 105(g). The alternatives remain bracketed.

COMMITMENT 9: RESOURCE ALLOCATION: Delegates agreed on 110(c), on improving and restructuring, as appropriate, national tax regimes and administration in order to establish an equitable and efficient system that supports social development policies and programmes and, inter alia, take measures to reduce tax evasion. In 110(d), on removing, in all countries retaining them, tax allowances for bribes paid to foreign public officials, and pursuing recovery of assets where funds were illegally acquired, the G-77/CHINA preferred reference to tax allowances for bribes paid to secure foreign contracts. The US preferred referring to bribes paid to foreign public officials, including those to secure foreign contracts. The EU, supported by the US, proposed replacing the paragraph with language from a GA resolution on corruption, requesting the international community to support the efforts of all countries aimed at strengthening institutional capacity for preventing corruption, bribery, money laundering and illegal transfer of funds. Stressing the issue was a fiscal one and not corruption, INDIA favored the G-77/China language over the EU proposal. The Chair, supported by the EU and opposed by LIBYA, proposed alternative language on eliminating tax concessions/deductible expenditures incurred in securing foreign contracts by illegitimate means/payments. The US said the reference to securing foreign contracts was too narrow. With no agreement, the Chair noted he would formulate alternative wording.

In US-proposed text for paragraph 111, on considering, at the international level, further means to mobilize additional resources, INDIA objected to the reference to "considering." The US, with the EU, agreed to insert "promoting." Language on more effective use of existing resources was moved into a sub-paragraph, but INDIA objected to including existing resources in a paragraph on the international level. The EU and SENEGAL suggested that the text should refer to mobilizing both existing and additional resources. The EU, with the US, opposed a Chair's proposal to move the" existing resources" reference to paragraph 110, which addresses the national level. The text remains bracketed. In 111(b), on tax shelters, delegates agreed to a US reformulation on exploring ways to combat the use of tax shelters and tax havens that undermine tax systems.

In 111(c), on stabilization of commodities, the G-77/CHINA reformulated its proposal to take steps for the stabilization of commodity prices in the international market, including by improving existing mechanisms to respond to the real concern of developing countries that are heavily dependent on primary exports. Opposing this language, the EU, supported by the US, preferred agreed UNCTAD language on improving the existing mechanisms for helping to stabilize commodity export earnings so as to respond to such concerns. No agreement was reached.

CANADA, supported by NORWAY and opposed by the US, revised its 111(e) (new 111(e) bis), on further study of the feasibility of a currency transaction tax, to language on further study of the implications of a currency transaction tax, including the potential advantages and disadvantages. The EU indicated its possible support. The G-77/ CHINA preferred to further study the idea of a currency transaction tax, and its potential implications. No agreement was reached.

In 111(f), on repatriation of illegally acquired funds, the EU proposed, and the G-77/CHINA accepted ad referendum, reformulated language on exploring ways and means of preventing and addressing illegal transfers as well as in repatriating illegally transferred funds to their countries of origin and calling upon all countries and entities concerned to cooperate in this regard.

In a Holy See-proposed 111(f) bis, on international cooperation regarding tax issues arising from new economic activities operating beyond the jurisdiction in which they operate, the US, noting this may be covered by other paragraphs, preferred referring to indirect tax and tax administrative issues and adding reference to economic activities that may have effects in jurisdictions beyond the jurisdiction in which the activities occur. After several delegations emphasized the complexity of the issue, the sub-paragraph was deleted.

In 112(c), on reversing the current decline in ODA and reaching 0.7% percent of GNP for overall ODA, the EU supported using language agreed in the draft political declaration on striving to fulfill the yet to be attained internationally agreed target of 0.7% of GNP of developed countries for overall ODA as soon as possible. Stressing the need for action-orientated language, the G-77/CHINA preferred "to fulfill" this target. No agreement was reached.

In G-77/China-proposed 112(e), on giving preferential interest rates for social development programmes and projects as an indication of lending countries' commitment to achieving social development goals and targets, the EU said it could accept the text with reference to concessional financing instead of preferential interest rates. The G-77/ CHINA agreed. JAPAN supported the proposal, but suggested replacing giving with continuing to provide, deleting the reference to commitment, and supporting developing countries' efforts to achieve social development goals and targets. The US requested time to consider the reformulation, and it remains bracketed.

In 112(f), on support to landlocked and transit developing countries, IRAN responded to a US objection to the word "transit" with a reference from GA resolution 54/199. The US requested time to consider, and the sub-paragraph remains bracketed.

COMMITMENT 10: SOCIAL DEVELOPMENT COOPERATION: The EU agreed to withdraw its proposal for 114 ter, requesting the Secretary-General to report to the CSD on the state of ratification of relevant social development instruments, after the US, supported by the G-77/CHINA, observed this was not a new initiative.

Paragraph 116, on inviting the UN to identify common social development indicators, remains bracketed. The EU pointed out that its original formulation for the text addresses the international level, while a G-77/China alternative relates only to the national level. Delegates removed brackets from 117(c), on encouraging implementation of regional social development agendas, after agreeing to EU-text on taking greater account of the agendas of, inter alia, regional commissions, and to a G-77/China proposal to insert "including" before a reference to funding policies and programmes.

In 118(b) and (c), on ECOSOC and the Bretton Woods institutions, delegates suspended discussion pending group positions. In paragraph 121, delegates agreed on: promoting South-South cooperation, particularly in terms of economic and technical cooperation; and supporting triangular mechanisms whereby donors would provide appropriate support. The EU and the US opposed a G-77/China proposal that this include considering the establishment of a generalized trust fund, supported by voluntary contributions. CUBA noted such a fund already exists and discussion was suspended pending information from UNDP.

For paragraph 122, on the right to development, delegates considered seven alternatives proposed by the US, the EU, Japan, Mexico, the G-77/China and the Chair. They agreed to use the Chairs formulation, on promoting the full realization of the right to development as established in the Declaration on the Right to Development and reaffirmed by the Vienna Declaration and Programme of Action, as a basis for future negotiations.

The EU proposed deleting paragraph 123, on reforming the international financial system. NORWAY suggested language based on GA resolution 54/231, referring to continued work on a wide range of reforms to create a strengthened international financial system. Delegates agreed to the Chairs recommendation that the text be addressed in connection with similar language in the draft political declaration.

In paragraph 124, on approaches to development, the EU and the US supported the Chairs proposal, on promoting an integrated approach based on good governance. PAKISTAN, ALGERIA, EGYPT and LIBYA opposed the text, noting objections to, inter alia, prescriptive approaches, a lack of an agreed definition for good governance, and emphasis of good governance over other issues. Delegates agreed to an EU formulation as a basis for negotiations, with amendments that included adding a reference to people-centered sustainable development and inserting an "inter alia" before a list of elements comprising integrated development.


BEIJING +5: The GA Special Session on "Gender equality, development and peace for the 21st century" will be held from 5-9 June 2000, at UN Headquarters in New York. The Special Session will review and assess the progress achieved in the implementation of the Nairobi Forward-Looking Strategies for the Advancement of Women, adopted in 1985, and the Beijing Platform for Action, adopted at the 1995 Fourth World Conference on Women in Beijing. It will also consider future actions and initiatives for the year 2000 and beyond. For more information, contact: UN Division for the Advancement of Women, 2 UN Plaza, DC 2-12th Floor, New York, NY 10017 USA; tel: +1 (212) 963-1234; fax +1 (212) 963-3463; e-mail:; Internet: beijing+5.htm.

WSSD +5: This Special Session of the GA will be held from 26-30 June 2000, in Geneva. For more information, contact: Gloria Kan, Chief, Intergovernmental Policy Branch, Division for Social Policy Development, Department of Economic and Social Affairs, United Nations, Room DC2-1362, NY, NY 10017 USA; tel: +1 (212) 963-5873; fax: +1 (212) 963-3062; e-mail:; Internet: http://

GENEVA 2000 FORUM: Held in conjunction with the Copenhagen+5 Special Session in Geneva, from 26-30 June 2000, the Geneva 2000 Forum aims to enable representatives of non-governmental organizations, parliaments, trade unions, business and industry, professional associations, academic institutions, governmental and intergovernmental organizations, civil society and the media to join in the debate on social development. For more information, contact: The Geneva 2000 Secretariat, c/o Ambassador Daniel Stauffacher, Delegate of the Swiss Government for the Follow-up Conference of the World Summit for Social Development, Geneva 2000, Rue de Varemb 9-11, P.O. Box 125, CH-1211 Geneva 20, Switzerland; tel: +41-22-749-2570; fax:+41-22-749-2589; Internet: http://

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