Further initiatives for social development
1. Five years have passed since the World Summit for Social Development, which marked the first time in history that heads of State and Government had gathered to recognize the significance of social development and human well-being for all and to give these goals the highest priority into the twenty-first century. The Copenhagen Declaration on Social Development /1 and the Programme of Action of the World Summit for Social Development /2 established a new consensus to place people at the centre of our concerns for sustainable development and pledged to eradicate poverty, promote full and productive employment, and foster social integration to achieve stable, safe and just societies for all.
2. We, the representatives of Governments, meeting at this special session of the General Assembly at Geneva to assess achievements and obstacles and to decide on further initiatives to accelerate social development for all, reaffirm our will and commitment to implement the Copenhagen Declaration and Programme of Action, including the strategies and agreed targets contained therein. The Copenhagen Declaration and Programme of Action will remain the basic framework for social development in the years to come.
3. Since the Summit, recognition of the imperative of social development requiring an enabling environment has spread and strengthened. Furthermore, there is a growing awareness of the positive impact of effective social policies on economic and social development. Our review and appraisal has shown that Governments, relevant international organizations as well as actors of civil society have made continued efforts to improve human well-being and eradicate poverty. However, further actions are needed for the full implementation of the Copenhagen Declaration and Programme of Action. It has also become clear that there is no single universal path to achieving social development and that all have experience, knowledge and information worth sharing.
4. Globalization and continuing rapid technological advances offer unprecedented opportunities for social and economic development. At the same time, they continue to present serious challenges, including widespread financial crises, insecurity, poverty, exclusion and inequality within and among societies. Considerable obstacles to further integration and full participation in the global economy remain for developing countries, in particular the least developed countries, as well as for some countries with economies in transition. Unless the benefits of social and economic development are extended to all countries, a growing number of people in all countries and even entire regions will remain marginalized from the global economy. We must act now in order to overcome those obstacles affecting peoples and countries and to realize the full potential of opportunities presented for the benefit of all.
5. We therefore reiterate our determination and duty to eradicate poverty, promote full and productive employment, foster social integration and create an enabling environment for social development. The maintenance of peace and security within and among nations, democracy, the rule of law, the promotion and protection of all human rights and fundamental freedoms, including the right to development, effective, transparent and accountable governance, gender equality, full respect for fundamental principles and rights at work and the rights of migrant workers are some of the essential elements for the realization of social and people-centred sustainable development. Social development requires not only economic activity but also reduction in the inequality in the distribution of wealth and more equitable distribution of the benefits of economic growth within and among nations, including the realization of an open, equitable, secure, non-discriminatory, predictable, transparent and multilateral rule-based international trading system, maximizing opportunities and guaranteeing social justice, and recognizing the interrelationship between social development and economic growth.
6. Full and effective implementation of the Copenhagen Declaration and Programme of Action is necessary at all levels. We reaffirm that while social development is a national responsibility it cannot be successfully achieved without the collective commitment and efforts of the international community. We invite Governments, the United Nations and other relevant international organizations, within their respective mandates, to strengthen the quality and consistency of their support for sustainable development, in particular in Africa and the least developed countries, as well as in some countries with economies in transition, and to continue coordinating their efforts in this regard. We also invite them to develop coordinated and gender-sensitive social, economic and environmental approaches in order to close the gap between goals and achievements. This in turn requires not only renewed political will but also the mobilization and allocation of additional resources at both the national and international levels. In this connection, we will strive to fulfil the yet to be attained internationally agreed target of 0.7 per cent of gross national product of developed countries for overall official development assistance as soon as possible.
7. We recognize that excessive debt-servicing has severely constrained the capacity of many developing countries, as well as countries with economies in transition, to promote social development. We also recognize the efforts being made by indebted developing countries to fulfil their debt-servicing commitment despite the high social cost incurred. We reaffirm our pledge to find effective, equitable, development-oriented and durable solutions to the external debt and debt-servicing burdens of developing countries.
8. The fight against poverty requires the active participation of civil society and people living in poverty. We are convinced that universal access to high-quality education, including opportunities for the acquisition of skills required in the knowledge-based economy, health and other basic social services, and equal opportunities for active participation and sharing the benefits of the development process are essential for the achievement of the objectives of the Copenhagen Declaration and Programme of Action. Recognizing the primary responsibility of Governments in this regard, we acknowledge the importance of strengthening partnerships, as appropriate, among the public sector, the private sector and other relevant actors of civil society.
9. We reaffirm our pledge to place particular focus on, and give priority attention to, the fight against the worldwide conditions that pose severe threats to the health, safety, peace, security and well-being of our people. Among these conditions are: chronic hunger; malnutrition; illicit drug problems; organized crime; corruption; natural disasters; foreign occupation; armed conflicts; illicit arms trafficking; trafficking in persons; terrorism; intolerance and incitement to racial, ethnic, religious and other hatreds; xenophobia; and endemic, communicable and chronic diseases, in particular the human immunodeficiency virus/acquired immunodeficiency syndrome (HIV/AIDS), malaria and tuberculosis.
10. We reiterate our resolve to reinforce solidarity with people living in poverty and dedicate ourselves to strengthening policies and programmes to create inclusive, cohesive societies for all - women and men, children, young and older persons - particularly those who are vulnerable, disadvantaged and marginalized. We recognize that their special needs will require specific targeted measures to empower them to live more productive and fulfilling lives.
11. Enhanced international cooperation is essential to implement the Copenhagen Declaration and Programme of Action as well as the further actions and initiatives adopted at the current special session, and to address the challenges of globalization. We recognize the need to continue to work on a wide range of reforms for a strengthened and more stable international financial system, enabling it to deal more effectively and in a timely manner with new challenges of development. We acknowledge the need for a coordinated follow-up to all major conferences and summits by Governments, regional organizations and all the bodies and organizations of the United Nations system, within their respective mandates.
12. Determined to give new momentum to our collective efforts to improve the human condition, we here set out further initiatives for the full implementation of the Copenhagen Declaration and Programme of Action. At the dawn of the new millennium, aware of our responsibilities towards future generations, we are strongly committed to social development, including social justice, for all in a globalizing world. We invite all people in all countries and in all walks of life, as well as the international community, to join in renewed dedication to our shared vision for a more just and equitable world.
1. One of the most important developments since the World Summit for Social Development in March 1995 is the increased priority which social development has been given in national and international policy objectives. The Summit also signified a recognition by States of the importance of making social improvement an integral part of development strategy at the national and international levels, as well as placing people at the centre of development efforts. The review and appraisal of the implementation of the outcome of the Summit shows that many new national policies and programmes have been initiated. The Summit has clearly also had an impact on the United Nations system, leading to a refocusing of its activities and galvanizing action. However, it is equally clear that national and international policy responses have been uneven. Despite some advances, there has been little progress in some key areas and regress is evident in others. As noted in one of the key issues of the analytical report of the Secretary-General,/3 one major development since the Summit is that inequality within and among States continues to grow. Achieving the goals agreed upon at the Summit will require much stronger and more comprehensive action and new, innovative approaches (see sect. III below) by all actors, national and international, governmental and non-governmental, taking into account the outcomes of the relevant United Nations conferences and summits.
2. Since the Summit, globalization has presented new challenges for the fulfilment of the commitments made and the realization of the goals of the Summit. Globalization and interdependence have provided many beneficial opportunities but have also involved potential damage and costs. If anything, these forces have accelerated and often strained the capacity of Governments and the international community to manage them for the benefit of all. Economic growth has been impressive in some places and disappointing in others. Current patterns of globalization have contributed to a sense of insecurity as some countries, particularly developing countries, have been marginalized from the global economy. The growing interdependence of nations, which has caused economic shocks to be transmitted across national borders, as well as increased inequality, highlight weaknesses in current international and national institutional arrangements and economic and social policies, and reinforce the importance of strengthening them through appropriate reforms. There is wide recognition of the need for collective action to anticipate and offset the negative social and economic consequences of globalization and to maximize its benefits for all members of society, including those with special needs. For most developing countries, the terms of international trade have worsened and inflows of concessional financial resources have declined. The high debt burden has weakened the capacity of many Governments to service their increasing external debt and eroded resources available for social development. Inappropriate design of structural adjustment programmes has weakened the management capacity of public institutions as well as the ability of Governments to respond to the social development needs of the weak and vulnerable in society and to provide adequate social services.
3. Since the Summit, policies and programmes to achieve social development have been implemented within the context of national economic, political, social, legal, cultural and historical environments. There has been an increasing interest in strengthening an enabling environment for sustainable development through the interaction of economic and social development and environmental protection. However, these national environments have been increasingly affected by global influences and forces beyond the control of individual Governments. Serious impediments to social development, many of which were identified by the Summit, still persist, including chronic hunger; malnutrition; illicit drug problems; organized crime; corruption; foreign occupation; armed conflicts; illicit arms trafficking; terrorism; intolerance and incitement to racial, ethnic, religious and other hatreds; xenophobia; endemic, communicable and chronic diseases, in particular HIV/AIDS, malaria and tuberculosis; and economic sanctions and unilateral measures at variance with international law and the Charter of the United Nations.
4. The ultimate goals of development are to improve living conditions for people and to empower them to participate fully in the economic, political and social arenas. Some Governments, in partnership with other actors, have contributed to an enabling environment for social development through efforts to ensure democracy and transparency in decision-making; the rule of law; accountability of government institutions; empowerment of women; and gender equality. Efforts have also been made to promote peace and security; respect for all human rights and fundamental freedoms, including the right to development; and tolerance and respect for cultural and ethnic diversity. However, progress in all these areas has been uneven and requires further effort.
5. At the Summit, quantitative targets were adopted and reaffirmed in the areas of basic social services and official development assistance. Out of thirteen targets, for the following nine areas the target date set was the year 2000: education; adult illiteracy; improved access to safe water supply and sanitation; malnutrition among children under five years of age; maternal mortality; infant mortality and the under-five mortality; life expectancy; malaria mortality and morbidity; and affordable and adequate shelter for all. Available data indicate that progress in these areas remains unsatisfactory. In the field of education, for example, there are still twenty-nine countries which have enrolment rates of less than 50 per cent, instead of the target of 80 per cent of children attending primary school.
6. Gender mainstreaming is widely accepted, but in some parts of the world the implementation of this concept has often not started. In many countries, women continue to suffer from discrimination with regard to the full enjoyment of all human rights.
7. The compilation by national Governments of broad-based and disaggregated data, both qualitative and quantitative indicators, to evaluate progress in the areas covered by the targets, has presented an important challenge. In this regard, Governments may, as appropriate, seek assistance from international organizations. Since the Summit, efforts have been made to improve the quality, timeliness and country coverage of data.
8. Given the nature and the broad scope of many of the goals and targets set in Copenhagen and the inevitable lag between the initiation of policies and measurable results, a comprehensive evaluation of the impact of new policies and programmes will take time. However, it is possible to make the following early assessments.
9. One of the most significant outcomes of the World Summit for Social Development has been to place the goal of eradicating poverty at the centre of national and international policy agendas. At the international level, development targets adopted at Copenhagen have increasingly influenced the policies and planning of bilateral and multilateral development partners. Many Governments have set national poverty reduction targets and formulated poverty eradication plans and strategies, including by promoting employment and developing or reinforcing tools to evaluate progress. Some have further developed existing poverty eradication plans, programmes and measures. Microcredit and other financial instruments have received increasing attention as effective means of empowering the poor, and many countries have expanded access to such programmes. Many countries have achieved improvements in literacy, life expectancy, school enrolment and the availability of basic social services, and have enhanced social protection systems and reduced infant mortality. However, progress has been uneven, revealing continuing disparities in access to basic social services, including a lack of access to quality education. Of particular concern in this regard is the increasing feminization of poverty and the uneven access to education for girls. For example, while countries in East Asia and the Pacific have achieved enrolment rates similar to those in developed countries, almost one third of school-age children in Africa are still without access to any form of education. In South Asia, it is estimated that fifty million children are out of primary school. Also, enrolment rates in some economies in transition have been declining. Groups with special needs are also affected by social exclusion and by poverty in different manners. In many countries, there are insufficient measures for improving their situation.
10. Progress in eradicating poverty has been mixed. In many countries, the number of people living in poverty has increased since 1995. In many developing countries, social service provision has deteriorated, leaving many without access to basic social services. Lack of resources, inadequate levels of economic development and in most cases the worsening terms of international trade, as well as weak infrastructures and inefficient administrative systems, have all undermined measures to eradicate poverty. Demographic changes in many parts of the world have led to new challenges and caused new obstacles in eradicating poverty. In Africa and the least developed countries, economic growth has barely resumed. Also, in some countries with economies in transition, economic reform has been slow and social security arrangements have weakened. In several developed countries, economic growth and rising incomes have improved the living conditions of many people. In some developed countries, however, unemployment has contributed to situations of inequality, poverty and social exclusion. Countries affected by the recent international crises have experienced a sharp increase in poverty, especially among women and groups with special needs, and unemployment. Although there are now some signs that growth is resuming, the sharp reversal in this area has pushed back their progress in poverty reduction and employment by several years.
11. At the Summit and at the Fourth World Conference on Women held in Beijing, the international community recognized expressly that women and men experience poverty differently and unequally and become impoverished through different processes, and that if those differences are not taken into account the causes of poverty cannot be understood or dealt with by public actions. Persistent discrimination against women in the labour market, the existing gap in their wages, unequal access to productive resources and capital as well as education and training, and the sociocultural factors that continue to influence gender relations and preserve the existing discrimination against women continue to hinder women's economic empowerment and exacerbate the feminization of poverty. Equality between women and men is widely accepted as essential for social development, but its implementation, including by mainstreaming a gender perspective into all policies and programmes aimed at eradicating poverty and the empowerment of women, has been slow.
12. While overall progress since the World Summit for Social Development in reducing unemployment has been slow and uneven, there has been increased attention by Governments as well as civil society, including the private sector, to the goal of full employment and to policies aimed at employment growth, as well as a renewed perception that full employment is a feasible goal. Employment promotion has increasingly been put at the centre of socio-economic development, in recognition of the central importance of employment to poverty eradication and social integration.
13. The international community has also recognized the need to promote employment that meets labour standards as defined by relevant International Labour Organization and other international instruments, including prohibitions on forced and child labour, guarantees of the rights of freedom of association and bargaining collectively, equal remuneration for men and women for work of equal value and non-discrimination in employment. This is reflected in the adoption of the International Labour Organization Declaration on Fundamental Principles and Rights at Work and its Follow-up,/4 and in the unanimous adoption of International Labour Organization Convention No. 182 concerning the Prohibition and Immediate Action for the Elimination of the Worst Forms of Child Labour./5 While some progress has been made in this respect, universal ratification of the relevant International Labour Organization conventions has not yet been achieved.
14. Many developed countries have strengthened their active employment promotion measures, including by the introduction of programmes to create jobs in social services and the provision of other public goods. These activities are sometimes relatively labour-intensive and also meet a growing demand for personal services, particularly for the elderly. In developing countries and those with economies in transition, labour-intensive public works programmes, in particular infrastructure investments in rural access roads, including farm-to-market roads, environmental rehabilitation, irrigation and urban regeneration schemes, have proven to be effective means of promoting employment and stimulating people-centred sustainable development. The important role of education and of vocational and skills development training at all levels in promoting employment, particularly in the long term, is increasingly recognized.
15. While in most countries the employment of women has increased steadily, gender inequalities, reflected in particular in the wage gap and a disproportionate share of family responsibilities, have remained obstacles to women's equal access to and participation in the labour market. Furthermore, in countries experiencing a lack of adequate employment and/or declining employment rates, women are often disproportionately affected and forced into the low-paid informal sector and out of social safety nets. In many parts of the world, this situation has also led to poverty and social exclusion, with inhuman consequences, such as forced prostitution, trafficking in women and children for the purposes of prostitution and sexual and other forms of exploitation, and the worst forms of child labour. At the same time, women's unpaid work remains unrecognized and unaccounted for in national accounts. To date, no universal measurement tools have been developed to evaluate women's unpaid work.
16. There has been an increase in casual and informal employment since the Summit. Casual employment arrangements have tended to spread in industrialized economies, with increasingly flexible labour markets and new mechanisms for subcontracting. In developing countries, the lack of growth of employment in the formal sector, among other factors, has led many people, especially women, into informal sector work and has increased migration to more attractive labour markets in other countries. While employment growth still remains the most effective means of reducing poverty, there appears to be a growing number of employed and underemployed persons, particularly women, with little employment security, low wages and low levels of social protection. In a number of countries, considerable attention has been focused on this issue in recent years, including the development of new initiatives. In some countries with economies in transition, there has been extensive growth of the shadow economy.
17. As a means of combating social exclusion, there have been efforts to integrate income support policies with active labour market policies for those marginalized from the labour market. It is increasingly being recognized that these policies are an important tool to reduce the dependency of individuals on social assistance and to reintegrate them into the world of work and into society.
18. In a number of countries, social dialogue among employers, employees and Governments has contributed to social and economic development. Social integration
19. Social integration is a prerequisite for creating harmonious, peaceful and inclusive societies. Promotion and protection of all human rights and fundamental freedoms, promotion of a culture of peace, tolerance and non-violence, respect for cultural and religious diversity, elimination of all forms of discrimination, equal opportunities for access to productive resources and participatory governance are important for social integration. Governments have developed new policy instruments, set up institutional arrangements, strengthened participation and dialogue with all social actors, and launched programmes to foster social cohesion and solidarity. However, lack of access to education, the persistence of poverty and unemployment, and inequitable access to opportunities and resources have caused social exclusion and marginalization. A growing number of people are afflicted by poverty because of the inequitable distribution of opportunities, resources, incomes and access to employment and to social services. In many countries, there is a growing schism between those in high-quality, well-paid employment and those in poorly remunerated, insecure jobs with low levels of social protection. Owing to continued discrimination and exclusion, women and girls face particular disadvantages in this regard.
20. Governments have made progress in promoting more inclusive societies. The adoption of democratic forms of government by an increasing number of countries offers opportunities for all to participate in all spheres of public life. The devolution of political power, the decentralization of administration and the development of local and municipal authorities have sometimes contributed to the creation of inclusive and participatory societies. In some countries, there are also consultative arrangements that enable wider involvement in the planning and evaluation of policies. In those countries, Governments as well as civil society, including the private sector, are involved in these processes. An encouraging development has been the strengthening of civil society, including non-governmental organizations and volunteers. In many countries, this provides the means for people to work together through partnerships with Governments, thereby promoting and protecting common interests and complementing the action of the public sector. The promotion and protection of all human rights, including the right to development, is an important element in the promotion of social integration. In this context, it is noted that the overall level of ratification of international human rights instruments has increased considerably since the World Summit for Social Development; however, universal ratification has not yet been achieved.
21. Governments have implemented a wide range of policies and programmes to respond to the special needs of vulnerable and disadvantaged groups and to strengthen their participation in development processes through the provision of, inter alia, social services, employment opportunities, credit, skill development and training. However, further efforts in this area are required.
22. The protection of immigrants and migrant workers required the adoption of a broad range of targeted policies. Governments were urged to ensure the protection of the human rights and dignity of migrants, irrespective of their legal status. Governments were also urged to intensify efforts to provide basic social services, facilitate family reunification of documented migrants, promote social and economic integration of documented migrants, and ensure their equal treatment before the law. There has not been enough accession and ratification of the International Convention on the Protection of the Rights of All Migrant Workers and Members of Their Families /6 for it to come into force. Since the Summit, progress in implementing international instruments on the protection of migrants has been limited and problems concerning the violation of the human rights of migrants have persisted. In many parts of the world, migrants have been subjected to discrimination and documented migrants have not received adequate social protection.
23. Despite attempts to address the causes leading to and the pressures resulting from the movement of refugees and displaced persons, many countries, especially those hosting large refugee populations, have required international support to provide basic social services.
24. While there has been incremental but uneven movement towards equality and equity between women and men in all regions of the world, the fact remains that women are the most affected in times of crisis and economic restructuring. Whereas many countries have adopted national strategies on the implementation of the Beijing Declaration /7 and Platform for Action,/8 including general policy recommendations and specific plans of action, concrete progress in improving the status of women and promoting gender equality has been slow and uneven. All forms of violence against women and girls remain a persistent problem for all countries and create obstacles to social integration, hindering the advancement of gender equality and the full enjoyment of human rights by women.
25. There has been continued recognition that the family is the basic unit of society and that it plays a key role in social development and is a strong force of social cohesion and integration. In different cultural, political and social systems, various forms of the family exist.
26. The increase in violent conflicts, including those around issues of local autonomy and ethnic identity, as well as conflicts over the distribution of resources, have hampered social integration and diverted attention and resources from social and economic development to conflict management. This development has underlined the importance of social integration and access to basic social services as preventive measures against crises. Access to basic social services in conflict situations and social integration in post-conflict situations have also been underlined as important preventive tools.
27. The obstacles to the realization of the right of peoples to self-determination, in particular of peoples living under colonial or other forms of alien domination or foreign occupation, have continued to adversely affect the achievement of their social and economic development.
28. In some countries, social development is adversely affected by unilateral measures at variance with international law and the Charter of the United Nations that create obstacles to trade relations among States, impede the full realization of social and economic development and hinder the well-being of the population in the affected countries.
29. At the World Summit for Social Development, Governments committed themselves to accelerating the economic, social and human resources development of Africa and the least developed countries. Many of the objectives undertaken at the Summit have yet to be fulfilled by the countries concerned and their international partners, although in this regard donors continue to support the efforts by Africa and the least developed countries.
30. The deteriorating social and economic condition of the least developed countries requires priority attention to the many international development commitments towards those countries which have not been met. Many least developed countries have seen their share of official development assistance decrease, and progress has not been achieved in fulfilling the agreed target of earmarking 0.15 to 0.20 per cent of gross national product as official development assistance for the least developed countries. Technical cooperation provided by the United Nations and its affiliated agencies has been cut back since the Summit.
31. African countries have made real efforts to implement the commitments made at Copenhagen, but internal and external constraints continue to make progress extremely difficult. The mobilization of resources at the national and international levels to accelerate the economic and social development of Africa and the least developed countries through a holistic approach is needed for the full implementation of the commitments. Equitable access to education and health services, income-earning opportunities, land, credit, infrastructure and technology, as well as official development assistance and debt reduction, are vital to social development in Africa and the least developed countries.
32. Social indicators in Africa show that the continent falls dramatically short of the targets set at the Summit five years ago. About 90 per cent of countries in sub-Saharan Africa will not meet the year 2000 goals on child mortality. Life expectancy remained lower than sixty years in forty-one of the fifty-three countries during the period 1995 - 2000. The HIV/AIDS pandemic is having severe social, economic, political and security impacts in some of the hardest hit countries.
33. Progress has been achieved in the development of democratic institutions in a number of countries. Further progress needs to be made in Africa and the least developed countries in strengthening institutions which are transparent and accountable in order to achieve faster economic and social development.
34. In a rapidly globalizing economic world, Africa continues to be marginalized. A persistent decline in the international terms of trade for commodities exported from African countries has reduced real national income and savings to finance investment. The external debt burden has drastically reduced resources available for social development. Furthermore, promises made to provide official development assistance to developing countries in general and the least developed countries in particular have not been fulfilled. More concerted efforts and an internationally enabling environment are necessary to integrate Africa as well as the least developed countries into the world economy.
35. The mobilization of domestic and international resources for social development is an essential component for the implementation of the commitments made at the World Summit for Social Development in Copenhagen. Since the Summit, reforms to promote the effective and efficient utilization of existing resources have received increasing attention. However, inadequate national revenue generation and collection, combined with new challenges regarding social services and social protection systems due, for instance, to demographic changes and other factors, jeopardize the financing of social services and social protection systems in many countries. New budgeting and accounting techniques have been adopted in several countries. The involvement and cooperation of local authorities, civil society and beneficiary communities have been found to be valuable in raising efficiency in the delivery of services.
36. In several countries and for various reasons, a shift has been occurring in the modalities for financing social protection away from universal, publicly provided coverage to income-based, targeted assistance. Among those reasons are stagnant or declining public revenues or the need to reduce fiscal deficits as well as changing priorities for public expenditures. Also, the need to create new employment opportunities and to provide incentives for the unemployed or underemployed and coverage for new social problems as well as to address the specific needs of disadvantaged and marginalized populations has motivated changes in social protection systems. In some countries, the principle of universal free provision of services, such as health care, education and water supply, has been replaced by user fees and privatization and by more targeted social service provision. However, in many countries, the impact of such measures, especially on the poor and vulnerable, remains to be seen.
37. Despite the renewed commitment at the Summit by donor countries to meet the agreed target of 0.7 per cent of their gross national product for official development assistance, overall official development assistance has continued to decline. Only four countries now meet the agreed target, with one more country about to reach it. In the meantime, the relative role of official development assistance within various forms of financing for development has also been declining. As a result of the Summit, however, earmarking of funds for social development has been formulated more explicitly in official development assistance policy. Official development assistance has been found to be more effective when countries are committed to growth-oriented strategies combined with poverty eradication goals and strategies. Poverty eradication through sustainable development is seen by most donor countries as the main objective of development cooperation. The Bretton Woods institutions have also begun to pay more focused attention to the social development dimension in their structural adjustment programmes and lending policies. This process is currently being further strengthened.
38. The 20/20 initiative has encouraged interested Governments and donors to increase the amount of resources earmarked for basic social services and to enhance equity and efficiency in their use. It has also emphasized the need for additional resources in order to pursue effectively the social development agenda, while highlighting the difficulties and limitations of many countries, in particular developing countries, in raising or reallocating domestic resources.
39. There is greater acceptance that the increasing debt burden faced by the most indebted developing countries is unsustainable and constitutes one of the principal obstacles to achieving progress in people-centred sustainable development and poverty eradication. For many developing countries, as well as countries with economies in transition, excessive debt servicing has severely constrained their capacity to promote social development and provide basic services. Although the Heavily Indebted Poor Countries Debt Initiative has the potential to reduce debt-servicing costs significantly for the countries it covers, the fact remains that it has so far benefited only a few of them. This initiative has recently been strengthened to provide faster, deeper and broader debt relief, in the context of poverty reduction strategies in which Governments and civil society cooperate to make commitments to utilize the financial benefits to alleviate poverty. A few lender countries have adopted bilateral debt-cancellation initiatives which go beyond the Heavily Indebted Poor Countries Debt Initiative.
40. Microcredit and other financial instruments provide financial and other services to people who are often overlooked by the traditional banking sector, thus trying to reach the poorest families. Women play a very important role in such initiatives. Experience shows that women are creditworthy and when they earn an income they are able to contribute more directly to the economy.
41. Since the Summit, the external debt problems of the middle-income developing countries have crippled their social development efforts. A need has arisen for concerted national and international action to address effectively the debt problems of middle-income developing countries with a view to resolving their potential long-term debt-sustainability problems.
42. Capacity-building is an important means of creating a national political, socioeconomic and legal environment conducive to development and social progress. Member States have taken a number of actions to enhance their capacities to achieve the goals of the World Summit for Social Development, including adopting long-term strategies for social development; conducting national assessments of their institutional capacities; taking legislative action to create an enabling environment; establishing partnerships with civil society; involving people in the management of their local affairs; mainstreaming a gender perspective into policies and programmes; improving transparent and accountable governance; strengthening the implementation, monitoring and evaluation of social policies, programmes and projects; and providing technical cooperation. However, the years since the Summit have also been marked by growing constraints on the capacity for public action. In some countries, increased constraints, including fiscal and political ones on Governments, have resulted in a reduction of the programmes and activities of the State.
43. The State has an important role in the provision of basic social services. However, in several countries, the State is no longer the sole provider of social services but rather the enabler of an overall favourable environment for social development, with increased responsibility for ensuring equitable delivery of and access to quality social services. This development has increased the need for stronger public institutions to provide an effective framework to ensure an equitable provision of basic social services for all. It is also recognized that an effective and accountable public sector is vital to ensuring the provision of social services.
44. International cooperation has been a critical element in the efforts of Governments towards capacity-building for social development. Technical cooperation, including that provided by the United Nations, has been supportive of such efforts by Governments, although in many areas such cooperation should be strengthened and broadened.
1. Governments should adopt an integrated focus in order to ensure that social development objectives are incorporated in all areas of governmental decision-making. In this connection, the General Assembly recommends taking the following further initiatives at the local, national, regional and international levels for the further implementation of the ten commitments adopted at the World Summit for Social Development as contained in the report of the Summit.1
2. Governments, while designing and implementing their development policies, should ensure that people are placed at the centre of development. Therefore, people must have the right and the ability to participate fully in the social, economic and political life of their societies. Our global drive for social development and the recommendations for action contained in the present document are made in a spirit of consensus and international cooperation, in full conformity with the purposes and principles of the Charter of the United Nations, recognizing that the formulation and implementation of strategies, policies, programmes and actions for social development are the responsibility of each country and should take into account the diverse economic, social and environmental conditions in each country, with full respect for the various religious and ethical values, cultural backgrounds and philosophical convictions of its people, and in conformity with all human rights and fundamental freedoms. In this context, international cooperation is essential for the full implementation of social development programmes and actions.
3. Make a renewed commitment to effective, transparent and accountable governance and democratic institutions that are responsive to the needs of people and enable them to take an active part in decision-making about priorities, policies and strategies.
4. Reaffirm the crucial role of Government in advancing people-centred sustainable development through actions to develop and maintain increased equality and equity, including gender equality; markets which function efficiently within a framework of ethical values; policies to eradicate poverty and enhance productive employment; universal and equal access to basic social services; social protection; and support for disadvantaged and vulnerable groups.
5. Reaffirm, promote and strive to ensure the realization of the rights set out in relevant international instruments and declarations, such as the Universal Declaration of Human Rights,/9 the International Covenant on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights,/10 and the Declaration on the Right to Development,/11 including those relating to education, food, shelter, employment, health and information, particularly in order to assist people living in poverty and to ensure the strengthening of national and local institutions in charge of their implementation.
6. Urge the international community, particularly creditor and debtor countries and pertinent international financial institutions, to identify and implement development-oriented and durable solutions to external debt and debt-servicing problems of developing countries, which constitute an element affecting the development efforts and economic growth, inter alia, through debt relief, including the option of debt cancellation within the framework of official development assistance, and thereby strengthen the efforts of the Governments of such countries to attain the full realization of the economic, social and cultural rights of their people.
7. Enhance positive interaction among environmental, economic and social policies as also being essential for the successful attainment of Summit goals, by promoting the coordinated and simultaneous consideration of this objective in the process of policy formulation and recognizing continuously the impact of social, economic and financial policies on employment and sustainable livelihoods, poverty and social development.
8. Institute systems for ensuring the ex ante assessment and continuous monitoring of the social impact of economic policies at both the international and national levels, with a particular focus on the formulation of macroeconomic policies for dealing with financial crises and the design of economic reform programmes.
9. Develop national and, where appropriate, regional guidelines, taking into account broad definitions of productivity and efficiency, in order to undertake comprehensive assessments of the social and economic costs of unemployment and poverty to facilitate appropriate strategies for employment generation and poverty eradication.
10. Acknowledging that there is no single universal path to achieving social development, and recognizing the importance of Member States sharing information on their national experiences and best practices in social development on the basis of equality and mutual respect, request the Economic and Social Council to consider, through the Commission for Social Development, ways of sharing these experiences and practices to assist Member States in the development of policies to promote the goals of the Summit.
11. Strengthen the capacities of developing countries and countries with economies in transition to address the obstacles that hinder their participation in an increasingly globalized economy by:
- Stimulating and strengthening the industrialization process in developing countries;
- Facilitating the transfer to developing countries and countries with economies in transition of appropriate technology, know-how, knowledge and information, including for social development and capacity-building, complementing efforts of these countries in this regard through enhanced international cooperation, including technical cooperation and adequate financial resources;
- Increasing and improving access of products and services of developing countries to international markets through, inter alia, the negotiated reduction of tariff barriers and the elimination of non-tariff barriers, which unjustifiably hinder trade of developing countries, according to the multilateral trading system;
- Increasing and improving access of products and services of countries with economies in transition to international markets;
- Attaining, according to existing multilateral trading rules, greater universality of the multilateral trading system and accelerating the process directed towards the further accession to the World Trade Organization of developing countries and countries with economies in transition;
- Providing technical assistance bilaterally and through the auspices of the World Trade Organization, the United Nations Conference on Trade and Development, the International Trade Centre and other organizations to developing countries and countries with economies in transition for capacity-building and to address the ability to trade, as well as to participate effectively in international economic forums, and in international trade negotiations, including the dispute settlement mechanism of the World Trade Organization.
12. Take steps with a view to the avoidance of and refrain from any unilateral measure at variance with international law and the Charter of the United Nations that impedes the full achievement of economic and social development by the population of the affected countries, in particular women, children and persons with special needs, that hinders their well-being and that creates obstacles to the full enjoyment of their human rights, including the right of everyone to a standard of living adequate for their health and well-being and their right to food, medical care and the necessary social services. Ensure that food and medicine are not used as tools for political pressure.
13. Reduce negative impacts of international financial turbulence on social and economic development, inter alia, by:
- Improving preventive and other measures and early-warning capabilities to address the excessive volatility of short-term capital flows, including consideration, inter alia, of a temporary debt standstill;
- Enhancing institutional capacities at the national and international levels to improve transparency of financial flows, and developing, strengthening and enforcing regulatory frameworks for monitoring operations, inter alia, to reduce the potential negative impact of financial operations;
- Where appropriate, establishing or strengthening at the regional level intergovernmental coordination mechanisms in economic, financial and social fields to promote economic and financial stability and social development at that level;
- Providing technical assistance to developing countries and countries with economies in transition to strengthen their domestic capital markets and to ensure their proper regulation by national Governments;
- Taking measures to protect basic social services, in particular education and health, in the policies and programmes adopted by countries when dealing with international financial crises;
- Acting to strengthen national institutions and consultative mechanisms for economic policy formulation, involving improved transparency and consultation with civil society;
- Encouraging international financial institutions and other related mechanisms to be vigilant about potential financial crises in countries, and assist countries in developing their capacities to forestall and mitigate crises with a view to providing a timely and effective response.
14. Ensure the effective involvement of developing countries and countries with economies in transition in the international economic decision-making process through, inter alia, greater participation in international economic forums, ensuring transparency and accountability of international financial institutions to accord a central position for social development in their policies and programmes.
15. Enhance development cooperation in order to augment the productive potential of people in developing countries and to build the capacity, among others, of the private sector to compete more effectively in the global marketplace in order to create the basis for generating greater resources for social development.
16. Support the Cologne initiative for the reduction of debt, particularly the speedy implementation of the enhanced Heavily Indebted Poor Countries Debt Initiative, and welcome commitments to ensure that additional financing is mobilized to fully fund debt relief to heavily indebted poor countries over the longer term and the provision that funds saved should be used to support anti-poverty programmes and social development.
17. Bearing in mind that corporations must abide by national legislation, encourage corporate social responsibility so that it contributes to social development goals, inter alia, by:
- Promoting increased corporate awareness of the interrelationship between social development and economic growth;
- Providing a legal, economic and social policy framework that is just and stable to support and stimulate private sector initiatives aimed at achieving these goals;
- Enhancing partnerships with business, trade unions and civil society at the national level in support of the goals of the Summit.
18. Take further effective measures to remove the obstacles to the realization of the right of peoples to self-determination, in particular peoples living under colonial and foreign occupation, which continue to adversely affect their economic and social development and are incompatible with the dignity and worth of the human person and must be combated and eliminated.
19. Enhance international cooperation, including burden-sharing, and coordination of humanitarian assistance to countries affected by natural disasters and other humanitarian emergencies and post-conflict situations in ways that will be supportive of recovery and long-term development.
20. Create and improve conditions to allow for the voluntary repatriation of refugees in safety and dignity to their countries of origin, and the voluntary and safe return of internally displaced persons to their places of origin and their smooth reintegration into their societies.
21. Encourage relevant bodies of the United Nations system to address the issue of corruption which undermines the efforts made and efficient use of resources for social development, and in that context take note of the recommendation of the Commission on Crime Prevention and Criminal Justice that the General Assembly adopt a resolution to start the elaboration of an effective international legal instrument against corruption,/12 and encourage relevant bodies of the United Nations system to give it serious consideration.
22. Encourage the ongoing work on a draft convention against transnational organized crime and the additional protocols thereto, with a view to the speedy finalization of this work.
23. Give proper consideration to urgent and effective measures regarding the issue of the social and humanitarian impact of sanctions, in particular on women and children, with a view to minimizing social and humanitarian effects of sanctions.
24. Support countries with economies in transition to establish effective regulatory environments, including adequate legal frameworks and institutions, to develop progressive and efficient tax systems to provide adequate resources for social development, and to better utilize existing material and labour resources, inter alia, by implementing measures to reduce the social costs of transition, in particular in order to reverse the trend of cuts in public spending for social services, and encouraging efforts to integrate non-governmental organizations, trade unions, employer organizations and other organizations of civil society into the operation of social policy.
25. Place poverty eradication at the centre of economic and social development and build consensus with all relevant actors at all levels on policies and strategies to reduce the proportion of people living in extreme poverty by one half by the year 2015 with a view to eradicating poverty.
26. Urge countries that have not yet done so to incorporate goals and targets for combating poverty into their national strategies for socio-economic development and to adjust their national strategies, as appropriate to the country context, by striving to establish or strengthen institutional mechanisms that ensure a multisectoral approach to poverty eradication, and enhancing the capacity of local government to address poverty while maintaining accountability, both to the central Government for funds allocated by it and to the constituents concerning the use of those funds.
27. In the context of comprehensive national strategies on poverty eradication, integrate policies at all levels, including economic and fiscal policies, capacity-building and institution-building, giving priority to investments in education and health, social protection and basic social services, in order to help to empower people living in poverty, by:
- Promoting coherence between national and international strategies and programmes to combat poverty at all levels;
- Assisting developing countries in improving capacities for poverty-related data collection and analysis, which is necessary for formulation of poverty reduction policies;
- Ensuring that macroeconomic policies reflect and fully integrate, inter alia, employment growth and poverty reduction goals;
- Encouraging Governments to re-evaluate, as appropriate, their national fiscal policies, including progressive tax mechanisms, with the aim of reducing income inequalities and promoting social equity;
- Restructuring public expenditure policies to make them more efficient, transparent and with clear lines of accountability to maximize their impact on poverty eradication;
- Improving access for people living in poverty to productive resources by implementing measures, such as skills training and microcredit schemes;
- Using employment policies, including self-employment, to reduce poverty;
- Encouraging the growth of small and medium-sized enterprises by formulating a consistent, long-term policy to support such enterprises, and by, inter alia, furthering access to capital and credit, promoting training opportunities and appropriate technology, reducing bureaucratic regulations, promoting gender equality and labour standards, and fostering improved access of small and medium-sized enterprises to contracts for infrastructure projects;
- Devising ways and means to allow for better acknowledgement of the nature of the informal sector so as to evaluate its share in the national economy and, where appropriate, to improve its productivity by increasing training and access to capital, including microcredit, to progressively improve working conditions through respect for basic workers' rights, to enhance social protection and to facilitate its eventual integration into the formal economy;
- Establishing, strengthening and expanding microcredit and other financial instruments adapted to the needs and potentials of marginalized people and vulnerable groups in order to make microcredit available to a greater number of people, particularly women, and disadvantaged groups, especially people living in poverty, and to make information and training on its effective operation and benefits widely available;
- Encouraging and facilitating the development of cooperatives, where appropriate;
- Encouraging sustainable rural development, especially in areas low in agricultural potential;
- Expanding advisory services and technical assistance in the areas of agriculture, including animal husbandry and fisheries, and promoting small businesses and self-employment for rural workers, in particular women, in the light of increasing rural poverty, landlessness and rural-urban migration, and, similarly, promoting industrialization in rural areas for employment generation;
- Developing and promoting institutional capacities (e.g., by management training);
- Ensuring a gender equality perspective at all levels and taking measures to counteract the feminization of poverty, keeping in mind the potential role of women and girls in poverty eradication;
- Promoting participatory poverty assessments as well as social impact assessments which include sex, age and relevant socio-economic categories, defining, inter alia, the extent and localization of poverty and the groups most severely affected, in order to design anti-poverty strategies;
- Targeting the special needs of vulnerable and disadvantaged groups;
- Supporting initiatives that help to empower people living in poverty, especially female heads of households, and promote their capacities for self-organization to enable them to better utilize available opportunities, basic social services and productive resources;
- Ensuring community participation in the formulation and implementation of poverty reduction strategies and programmes with a view to increasing people's self-reliance and promoting a holistic approach to the various needs of the people. Civil society can play an important role in cooperation with national Governments in planning, organizing and providing basic social services;
- Ensuring access for all to basic social services, even during financial crises;
- Using health policies as an instrument for poverty eradication, along the lines of the World Health Organization strategy on poverty and health, developing sustainable and effectively managed pro-poor health systems which focus on the major diseases and health problems affecting the poor, achieving greater equity in health financing, and also taking into account the provision of and universal access to high-quality primary health care throughout the life cycle, including sexual and reproductive health care, not later than 2015, as well as health education programmes, clean water and safe sanitation, nutrition, food security and immunization programmes;
- Encouraging decentralization in the delivery of basic social services as a means of responding more efficiently to the needs of the people.
28. Develop and implement sustainable pro-poor growth strategies that enhance the potential and increase the ability of women and men living in poverty to improve their lives; such strategies could include improving access to productive resources and microfinance and establishing programmes to raise productivity and improve knowledge, skills and capabilities.
29. Share best practices on how to establish or improve social protection systems covering risks that cannot be mastered by the beneficiaries themselves and trap people into poverty, ensuring access to social protection, including social safety nets, for people living in poverty, and promoting the role of systems of self-help and mutual benefits, including small, community-based innovative schemes, thereby supporting social cohesion and contributing to more universal and comprehensive systems of protection, taking into account country-specific circumstances, by:
- Exploring ways and means, supported by resources, including, as appropriate, through the reallocation of resources and financial assistance from donors, to develop social protection systems for vulnerable, unprotected and uninsured people, and in this context call upon the International Labour Organization and other relevant international organizations, within their mandates, to render technical assistance to developing countries and countries with economies in transition, upon their request;
- Developing, as required, new mechanisms to ensure the sustainability of these systems in the appropriate country context, especially that of ageing populations and increased unemployment.
30. Improve national capacity to address hunger, malnutrition and food insecurity at the household level, in cooperation with the World Food Programme, the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations and other concerned agencies, in particular by recognizing and supporting women in their pivotal role in providing food security. In this regard, call upon Governments which have not done so to place food security as an essential element of their poverty eradication strategies and social policies.
31. Encourage international support to countries with economies in transition in order to assist them in:
- Combining universal coverage of social services, with targeted assistance to the most vulnerable groups to ease the pain of transition;
- Implementing policies to involve those individuals marginalized by the transition and to overcome exclusion and further deprivation;
- Maintaining adequate social programmes.
32. Reassess, as appropriate, their macroeconomic policies with the aim of greater employment generation and reduction in the poverty level while striving for and maintaining low inflation rates.
33. Create an enabling environment for social dialogue by ensuring effective representation and participation of workers' and employers' organizations in order to contribute to the development of policies for achieving broad-based social progress.
34. Expand opportunities for productive employment, including self-employment, with particular focus on small and medium-sized enterprises, by investing in the development of human resources, entrepreneurship and employability, especially through education, vocational and management training, occupational safety and health, and by, inter alia, strengthening technical cooperation and cooperation with the private sector in this area.
35. Support the comprehensive International Labour Organization programme on decent work, which includes promoting equal opportunities for all women and men, including persons with disabilities, to obtain decent and productive work, with full respect for the basic rights of workers as defined by relevant International Labour Organization and other international instruments, including prohibitions on forced labour and child labour, safeguarding of the rights of freedom of association and collective bargaining, equal remuneration for women and men for work of equal value, and non-discrimination in employment, and improving social protection and promoting social dialogue.
36. Recognize the need to elaborate a coherent and coordinated international strategy on employment to increase opportunities for people to achieve sustainable livelihoods and gain access to employment, and in this connection support the convening of a world employment forum by the International Labour Organization in 2001.
37. Invite the International Labour Organization to facilitate a coordinated exchange of best practices in the field of employment policies to stimulate and expand employment generation, reduce unemployment, enhance the quality of work and improve labour-market and employment services.
38. Improve the quality of work and level of employment, inter alia, by :
- Making continued efforts towards ratifying - where they have not done so - and fully implementing the International Labour Organization conventions concerning basic rights of workers, namely, freedom of association and the effective recognition of the right to organize and bargain collectively, the elimination of all forms of forced or compulsory labour, the effective abolition of child labour and the elimination of discrimination in respect of employment and occupation;
- Strongly considering the ratification and full implementation of other International Labour Organization conventions concerning the employment rights of minors, women, youth, persons with disabilities, migrants and indigenous people;
- Respecting, promoting and realizing the principles contained in the International Labour Organization Declaration on Fundamental Principles and Rights at Work and its Follow-up;
- Supporting and participating in the global campaign for the immediate elimination of the worst forms of child labour, including by promoting universal ratification and implementation of International Labour Organization Convention No. 182 concerning the Prohibition and Immediate Action for the Elimination of the Worst Forms of Child Labour;
- Promoting safe and healthy settings at work in order to improve working conditions and to reduce the impact on individuals and health-care systems of occupational accidents and diseases.
39. Ensure effective and comprehensive action to eliminate harmful child labour, inter alia, by designing and implementing national plans of action; ensuring access to basic education; strengthening employment and income-earning opportunities for families of child workers; giving special attention to the girl child; promoting cooperation among Governments, employers' and workers' organizations, families of child workers and civil society; and stressing the need for close cooperation among the International Labour Organization, the United Nations Children's Fund, the World Bank and other relevant actors.
40. Call upon relevant organizations of the United Nations system to provide national Governments with technical assistance in a coordinated manner in order to help them in their efforts to promote social development and achieve the goals of poverty eradication, full employment and social integration, including gender equality.
41. Encourage the private sector to respect basic worker rights as reaffirmed in the International Labour Organization Declaration on the Fundamental Principles and Rights at Work and its Follow-up.
42. Improve methods for collection and analysis of basic employment data, disaggregated by, inter alia, age, sex and relevant socio-economic categories, as appropriate in the country context, including with regard to the informal, agricultural and service sectors and new forms of employment, and assess the feasibility of developing and improving mechanisms to measure unremunerated work.
43. Consider the possibility of a major event on the informal sector in the year 2002, to be organized by the International Labour Organization.
44. Invite the International Labour Organization to help Member States, upon their request, to extend a range of support measures to informal sector workers, including legal rights, social protection and access to credit.
45. Devise and strengthen the modalities of coverage of social protection systems, as appropriate, to meet the needs of people engaged in flexible forms of employment.
46. Wherever appropriate, adopt and/or strengthen legislation or other mechanisms for determining minimum wages.
47. Ensure that migrant workers benefit from the protection provided by relevant national and international instruments, take concrete and effective measures against the exploitation of migrant workers, and encourage all countries to consider the ratification and full implementation of the relevant international instruments on migrant workers, including the International Convention on the Protection of the Rights of All Migrant Workers and Members of their Families.
48. Undertake appropriate measures, in cooperation with employers' and workers' organizations, as well as other relevant actors of civil society, to address the specific employment issues of youth, ageing workers, persons with disabilities, single parents and long-term unemployed, with particular regard to women, including:
- Improving access to new technologies, vocational training and counselling, implementing programmes for job placement and facilitating the acquisition of work experience, including on-the-job training, as well as by the recognition of work experience acquired through voluntary activities and unpaid work;
- Promoting lifelong learning and access to labour market information, and tailoring programmes to meet the specific needs of those groups in the acquisition of skills required in the knowledge-based economy;
- Involving the private sector in skill training programmes;
- Adapting and improving access of youth to technical, secondary and higher education curricula, to meet the needs of a rapidly changing labour market, and easing transition between learning and work;
- Enabling older workers to remain and actively participate in working life.
49. Promote gender equality and eliminate gender discrimination in the labour market by:
- Promoting the principles of equal remuneration and the elimination of discrimination, and strongly considering ratifying International Labour Organization Conventions No. 100 concerning Equal Remuneration for Men and Women Workers for Work of Equal Value,/13 and No. 111 concerning Discrimination in Respect of Employment and Occupation /14 and fully implementing them once ratified;
- Ensuring the right to equal pay for equal work or work of equal value for women and men;
- Assisting women and men in reconciling employment and family responsibilities, inter alia, by flexible working arrangements, including parental voluntary part-time employment and work-sharing, as well as accessible and affordable quality child-care and dependant-care facilities, paying particular attention to the needs of single-parent households.
50. Strengthen mechanisms for the participation of all people, and promote cooperation and dialogue among all levels of government and civil society as contributions to social integration.
51. Strengthen support for civil society, including community organizations working with groups with special needs, and accelerate the implementation of United Nations instruments relating to those groups, encouraging sustained investment in social institutions and social capital and enhancing social networks, particularly with respect to people living in poverty and other marginalized groups.
52. Ensure an enabling environment for civil society organizations, inter alia, to facilitate their participation in the delivery of social services in a coordinated, democratic, transparent and accountable manner. Efforts should also be made to facilitate the contribution of civil society organizations, particularly from developing countries, to relevant international forums.
53. Promote the effective participation and contribution of disadvantaged and vulnerable groups and persons when drawing up legislation and programmes for poverty eradication and social inclusion.
54. Promote the contribution that voluntarism can make to the creation of caring societies as an additional mechanism in the promotion of social integration. The Commission for Social Development is invited to consider the issue in 2001, the International Year of Volunteers.
55. Promote the involvement of volunteers in social development, inter alia, by encouraging Governments, taking into account the views of all actors, to develop comprehensive strategies and programmes, by raising public awareness about the value and opportunities of voluntarism, and by facilitating an enabling environment for individuals and other actors of civil society to engage in voluntary activities and for the private sector to support such activities.
56. Recognize that the family is the basic unit of society and that it plays a key role in social development and is a strong force of social cohesion and integration. In different cultural, political and social systems, various forms of the family exist. Further recognize that equality and equity between women and men and respect for the rights of all family members are essential for family well-being and for society at large, and promote appropriate actions to meet the needs of families and their individual members, particularly in the areas of economic support and provision of social services. Greater attention should be paid to helping the family in its supporting, educating and nurturing roles, to the causes and consequences of family disintegration, and to the adoption of measures to reconcile work and family life for women and men.
57. Encourage the media, including via the Internet and other forms of information technology, to contribute to the promotion of social integration by adopting inclusive and participatory approaches in the production, dissemination and use of information, including by its accessibility to disadvantaged and marginalized groups.
58. While recognizing the positive role of the media and information technology, including the Internet, identify and take measures to counter the increasing dissemination of child pornography and other obscene materials, intolerance, including religious intolerance, hatred, racism, discrimination based on sex and age and the incitement to violence through the media and information technology, including the Internet.
59. Ensure that education at all levels promotes all human rights and fundamental freedoms, tolerance, peace, understanding of and respect for cultural diversity and solidarity in a globally interdependent world, as expressed in the Declaration and Programme of Action on a Culture of Peace,/15 as well as in the context of the United Nations Year of Dialogue among Civilizations (2001), the United Nations Decade for Human Rights Education and the Third Decade to Combat Racism and Racial Discrimination.
60. Eliminate all forms of discrimination, including racial discrimination, xenophobia and related intolerance, and in this context support the implementation of the International Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Racial Discrimination /16 and the convening of the World Conference against Racism, Racial Discrimination, Xenophobia and Related Intolerance, to be held in South Africa in 2001.
61. Ensure continued and intensified action to combat all forms of gender-based violence, and recognize that violence against women, whether in private or public life, both violates and impairs or nullifies the enjoyment by women of their human rights and fundamental freedoms.
62. Recognize the contribution of indigenous people to society, promote ways of giving them greater responsibility for their own affairs, inter alia, by:
- Seeking means of giving them effective voice in decisions directly affecting them;
- Encouraging United Nations agencies within their respective mandates to take effective programmatic measures for engaging indigenous people in matters relevant to their interests and concerns.
63. Encourage the ongoing work on a draft declaration on the rights of indigenous people with the aim of achieving completion prior to the conclusion of the International Decade on the World's Indigenous People in 2004, and support the establishment of a United Nations permanent forum to discuss indigenous issues, within the mandate of the Economic and Social Council, relating to economic and social development, culture, the environment, education, health and human rights.
64. Exchange views and information on national experience and best practices in designing and implementing policies and programmes on ageing, and in promoting full integration and continued participation of older persons in society as full actors in the development process, and in this context support the convening of the Second World Assembly on Ageing, to be held in Spain in the year 2002.
65. Support, on an urgent basis, research on the actual and projected situation of older persons, particularly in developing countries, especially on their productive role and contributions to development, in order to contribute significantly to the revision of the International Plan of Action on Ageing /17 at the Second World Assembly on Ageing.
66. Expand the range of policies and measures, inter alia, by promoting the implementation of the Standard Rules on the Equalization of Opportunities for Persons with Disabilities,/18 to empower persons with disabilities to play their full role in society. Special attention should be given to women and children with disabilities and to persons with developmental, mental and psychiatric disabilities.
67. Ensure access to employment for persons with disabilities through the organization and design of the workplace environment, and improve their employability through measures which enhance education and acquisition of skills, through rehabilitation within the community wherever possible and other direct measures, which may include incentives to enterprises to employ people with disabilities.
68. Intensify efforts to ensure the protection of the human rights and dignity of migrants irrespective of their legal status, the social and economic integration of documented migrants, the provision of effective protection for migrants, particularly by implementing the relevant provisions of the Vienna Convention on Consular Relations,/19 the provision of basic social services, the facilitation of family reunification of documented migrants and their equal treatment under the law.
69. Promote measures, at the national and international levels, to prevent trafficking and illegal transport of migrants and trafficking in persons, particularly women and children, for the purposes of prostitution, economic exploitation and any other form of exploitation, such as domestic servitude and bonded labour. Develop clear penalties for trafficking in persons and trafficking and illegal transport of migrants, backed by effective administrative procedures and laws, ensuring the punishment of those who have been convicted of such crimes.
70. Finalize as soon as possible the trafficking and smuggling protocols which are currently being negotiated in Vienna by the Ad Hoc Committee on the Elaboration of a Convention against Transnational Organized Crime.
71. Support the efforts of the United Nations International Drug Control Programme to implement its mandate, within the framework of international drug control treaties and the outcome of the twentieth special session of the General Assembly devoted to combating the world drug problem,/20 in a balanced and comprehensive approach, which includes reducing demand, fighting trafficking and reducing the supply of narcotic drugs and psychotropic substances.
72. Recognize that stable, supportive and nurturing family relationships, supported by communities and, where available, professional services, can provide a vital shield against substance abuse, particularly among minors. Schools and the media, inter alia, through the use of information technologies, including the Internet, should be encouraged to provide young people with information on the dangers of substance abuse and addiction and on how to seek help.
73. Recognize that the consumption of tobacco and the abuse of alcohol, especially by young women and men, pose a major threat to health, and support the development in each country of comprehensive programmes to reduce the consumption of tobacco, exposure to environmental tobacco smoke and the abuse of alcohol.
74. Further strengthen the effectiveness of organizations and mechanisms working for the prevention and peaceful resolution of conflicts and to address their social roots and consequences.
75. Strengthen the capability of relevant United Nations bodies, within their respective mandates, to promote measures for social integration in their post-conflict management strategies and activities, including in their research, analyses, training and operational activities, so as to better address trauma recovery, rehabilitation, reconciliation and reconstruction in post-conflict situations, inter alia, by promoting participatory development initiatives. Greater attention should be given to children, including unaccompanied refugee minors, displaced children, children separated from their families, those acting as soldiers and those involved in armed conflicts.
76. Promote the full enjoyment of all human rights and fundamental freedoms by all women and girls as one of the prerequisites of gender equality. Governments should ensure that the human rights of women and girls are respected, protected and promoted through the development, implementation and effective enforcement of gender-sensitive policies and legislation.
77. The elimination of discrimination against women and their empowerment and full participation in all areas of life and at all levels should be priority objectives at the national as well as at the international levels and an intrinsic part of social development. Equitable social development requires full respect for human dignity, equality and equity between women and men, and the mainstreaming of gender considerations in all levels of policy-making and in the planning of programmes and projects. Despite some progress, gender mainstreaming is not yet universal, and gender-based inequality continues in many areas of most societies.
78. Take fully into account and implement the outcome of the twenty-third special session of the General Assembly entitled "Women 2000: gender equality, development and peace for the twenty-first century"./21
79. Ensure gender mainstreaming in the implementation of each of the further initiatives related to each of the commitments made at the World Summit for Social Development, considering the specific roles and needs of women in all areas of social development, inter alia, by evaluating the gender implications of proposals and taking action to correct situations in which women are disadvantaged. The use of positive or affirmative action and empowerment programmes is commended to both Governments and international organizations.
80. Strengthen national efforts, including with assistance from the international community, to promote the empowerment of women, inter alia, by:
- Closing the gender gap in primary and secondary education by 2005 and ensuring free compulsory and universal primary education for both girls and boys by 2015;
- Increasing the access of women and girls to all levels and forms of education;
- Achieving a 50 per cent improvement in levels of adult literacy by 2015, especially for women;
- Increasing the participation of women and bringing about a balanced representation of women and men in all sectors and occupations in the labour market and closing the gender gap in earnings;
- Ensuring the reduction of maternal morbidity and mortality as a health sector priority;
- Eliminating all forms of violence against women, in the domestic as well as in the public sphere;
- Promoting programmes to enable women and men to reconcile their work and family responsibilities and to encourage men to share equally with women household and child care responsibilities.
81. Promote international cooperation to support regional and national efforts in the development and use of gender-related analysis and statistics, inter alia, by providing national statistical offices, upon their request, with institutional and financial support in order to enable them to respond to requests for data disaggregated by sex and age for use by national Governments in the formulation of gender-sensitive statistical indicators for monitoring and policy and programme impact assessment, as well as to undertake regular strategic surveys.
82. Support Governments in their efforts to institute action-oriented programmes and measures to accelerate the full implementation of the Copenhagen Programme of Action/2 and the Beijing Platform for Action,/8 with time-bound targets and/or measurable goals and evaluation methods, including gender-impact assessments, with the full participation of women for measuring and analysing progress.
83. Consider signing and ratifying the Optional Protocol to the Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Discrimination against Women./22
84. Increased efforts are needed to provide equal access to education, health, and social services and to ensure the rights of women and girls to education and the enjoyment of the highest attainable standard of physical and mental health and wellbeing throughout the life cycle, as well as adequate, affordable and universally accessible health care and services, including as regards sexual and reproductive health, particularly in the face of the HIV/AIDS pandemic; they are also needed with regard to the growing proportion of older women.
85. Ensure that the reduction of maternal morbidity and mortality is a health sector priority and that women have ready access to essential obstetric care, well-equipped and adequately staffed maternal health-care services, skilled attendants at delivery, emergency obstetric care, effective referral and transport to higher levels of care, when necessary, post-partum care and family planning, in order to, inter alia, promote safe motherhood, and give priority attention to measures to prevent, detect and treat breast, cervical and ovarian cancer and osteoporosis, and sexually transmitted infections, including HIV/AIDS.
86. Recognize the primary responsibility of Governments for providing or ensuring access to basic social services for all; develop sustainable, pro-poor health and education systems by promoting community participation in planning and managing basic social services, including health promotion and disease prevention; and diversify approaches to meet local needs, to the extent possible, utilizing local skills and resources.
87. Ensure appropriate and effective expenditure of resources for universal access to basic education and primary health care, within the country context, in recognition of the positive impact this can have on economic and social development, with particular efforts to target the special needs of vulnerable and disadvantaged groups.
88. Improve the performance of health-care systems, in particular at the primary health-care level, by broadening access to health care.
89. Make basic health services available to all members of society and, where appropriate, explore the possibility of promoting non-profit community-based health insurance programmes among possible methods to support the Government in the promotion of accessible primary health care for all.
90. Encourage new action at the international level, including examining the feasibility of proclaiming a United Nations literacy decade, to support national efforts to achieve universal access to basic education and primary health services for all by the year 2015.
91. Invite international organizations, in particular the international financial institutions, according to their mandates, to keep in mind the overall objective of facilitating long-term development to support national health and education programmes.
92. Reaffirm the Dakar Framework for Action on Education for All, adopted at the World Education Forum, held in Dakar from 26 to 28 April 2000,/23 to develop or strengthen national strategies or action plans at the appropriate level to promote its goals: to ensure that by 2015 all children, particularly girls and children in difficult circumstances or with special needs, including children with disabilities, have access to and complete free and compulsory primary education of good quality; to improve early childhood care and education; to ensure access to appropriate learning, life skills and citizenship programmes; to achieve a 50 per cent improvement in levels of adult literacy; to improve the quality of education; and to take action to eliminate gender disparities and to ensure that girls and women have full and equal access to education.
93. Recognize that achieving education for all will require additional financial support by countries and increased development assistance and debt relief for education by bilateral and multilateral donors, estimated to cost on the order of $8 billion a year. It is therefore essential that new, concrete financial commitments be made by national Governments and also by bilateral and multilateral donors, including the World Bank and the regional development banks, by civil society and by foundations.
94. Take measures to better acknowledge and support the work of teachers and other educational personnel, including, where appropriate, improved compensation and benefits, relevant training and retraining programmes, human resource and career development strategies, and measures to encourage teachers' sustained contributions to quality education.
95. Encourage and assist developing countries and others in need in building capacities for secondary and tertiary education, as well as in training students in the skills and technologies necessary for effective participation in the modern, knowledge-based global economy, and promote international exchanges in the field of education so as to foster greater self-reliance in meeting the challenges of social and economic development and to increase sensitivity for and better understanding of all cultures and awareness of global issues.
96. Take all appropriate measures to ensure that infectious and parasitic diseases, such as malaria, tuberculosis, leprosy and schistosomiasis, neither continue to take their devastating toll nor impede economic and social progress; and strengthen national and international efforts to combat these diseases, inter alia, through capacity-building in the developing countries with the cooperation of the World Health Organization, including support for research centres.
97. Take multisectoral measures at the national level to enable all women and men, including young people, to protect themselves and others against, and be protected from, HIV infection in order to counteract the devastating impact of the epidemic on personal, social and economic development. It is particularly important to protect the dignity and the human rights of and improve the quality of life for people living with HIV/AIDS. Measures to enhance prevention and address the consequences of the transmission of HIV/AIDS and other sexually transmitted infections may include:
- Strengthening health-care services, including sexual and reproductive health;
- Strengthening information, education and communication campaigns to raise awareness of HIV/AIDS and to promote safe and responsible sexual behaviour, in full partnership with youth, parents, families, educators and health-care providers;
- Training health-care providers in all areas of prevention and control of HIV/AIDS and sexually transmitted infections, and giving special attention to the avoidance of contaminating equipment and blood products, the need to ensure a safe blood supply and the avoidance of reusing or sharing needles among injecting drug users;
- Developing and implementing strategies to prevent mother-to-child transmission;
- Promoting analyses of the political, cultural, social, economic and legal aspects of HIV/AIDS in order to develop strategies and measures to address the epidemic and its impact on national development;
- Providing social and educational support to communities, households, orphans and children affected by HIV/AIDS.
98. Strengthen political commitment and efforts at the international and national levels against HIV/AIDS, with a focus on developing countries and countries with economies in transition, through partnership among the Joint United Nations Programme on Human Immunodeficiency Virus/Acquired Immunodeficiency Syndrome (HIV/AIDS) and its co-sponsors, bilateral donors, Governments and nongovernmental organizations, including youth organizations, and the private sector, based on a multisectoral approach encompassing, among other things, education and prevention programmes and services, care, including prenatal care, access to affordable medications and other pharmaceutical agents, and support for people living with HIV/AIDS, including home-based care, family planning programmes and the empowerment of women.
99. Provide 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.
100. Encourage, at all levels, arrangements and incentives to mobilize commercial enterprises, especially in pharmaceuticals, to invest in research aimed at finding remedies that can be provided at affordable prices for diseases that particularly afflict people in developing countries, and invite the World Health Organization to consider improving partnerships between the public and private sectors in the area of health research.
101. Recognize the right of everyone to the enjoyment of the highest attainable standards of physical and mental health as contained in relevant international human rights instruments as well as in the Constitution of the World Health Organization. Further recognize the critical importance of access to essential medicines at affordable prices. Acknowledge the contribution of intellectual property rights to promote further research, development and distribution of drugs, and the fact that these intellectual property rights should contribute to the mutual advantage of producers and users of technological knowledge and in a manner conducive to social and economic welfare. Agree that Member States may freely exercise, consistent with national laws and international agreements acceded to, in an unrestricted manner, the options available to them under international agreements to protect and advance access to life-saving, essential medicines.
102. Invite the World Health Organization, in collaboration with the United Nations Conference on Trade and Development, the World Trade Organization and other concerned agencies, to help to strengthen the capacities of the developing countries, particularly the least developed countries, to analyse the consequences of agreements on trade in health services for health equity and the ability to meet the health needs of people living in poverty, and to develop policies to ensure the promotion and protection of national health services.
103. Invite the World Health Organization to cooperate with Governments, at their request, and with international organizations, in monitoring and analysing the pharmaceutical and public health implications of relevant international agreements, including trade agreements, so that Governments can effectively assess and subsequently develop pharmaceutical and health policies and regulatory measures that address their concerns and priorities, and can maximize the positive and mitigate the negative impact of those agreements.
104. Invite the organizations of the United Nations system to cooperate with the World Health Organization to integrate the health dimension into their policies and programmes, in view of the close interdependence between health and other fields and the fact that solutions to good health may often be found outside of the health sector itself; such cooperation may build on initiatives undertaken in one or more of the following areas: health and employment, health and education, health and macroeconomic policy, health and environment, health and transport, health and nutrition, health and food security, health and housing, development of more equitable health financing systems, and trade in health goods and services.
105. Invite the United Nations system to support national efforts, where appropriate, to build on initiatives undertaken in one or more of the above-mentioned fields.
106. Encourage concerted national and international efforts to promote an integrated approach to people-centred sustainable development.
107. Make concerted national and international efforts for promoting an enabling environment that will facilitate the integration of Africa and the least developed countries into the global economy and promote their participation in the multilateral trading system, inter alia, by:
- Implementing appropriate debt-relief initiatives that can lead to a sustainable solution to their debt burden;
- Improving market access for export products of Africa and the least developed countries, including through tariff- and quota-free treatment for essentially all products originating in least developed countries on as broad and liberal a basis as possible;
- Supporting programmes to assist them in taking full advantage of the multilateral trading regime, both on a bilateral basis and through multilateral efforts, inter alia, through the World Trade Organization, the International Trade Centre, United Nations Conference on Trade and Development and other relevant regional and subregional economic organizations;
- Pursuing structural adjustment programmes relevant to the needs of these countries by supporting growth-enhancing, poverty-reducing economic reforms;
- Supporting, inter alia, initiatives in the development of venture capital funds for investment in these countries in fields conducive to sustainable development.
108. Assist Governments in Africa and the least developed countries in enhancing the productive capacity and competitiveness of their countries through, inter alia, policies and programmes to support agricultural and industrial diversification, the establishment of cooperative business networks, public and private systems for sharing information, promoting technology and encouraging domestic and foreign investment, especially in the field of technology.
109. Call upon donor Governments and international organizations to encourage investment in critical infrastructure services, including reconstruction in post-conflict and natural disaster situations, and invite Governments in Africa and the least developed countries to utilize infrastructure investments to also promote employment.
110. Encourage interested Governments to consider the establishment of a world solidarity fund to be financed on a voluntary basis in order to contribute to the eradication of poverty and to promote social development in the poorest regions of the world.
111. Call upon the World Food Programme and other concerned agencies to strengthen food-for-work activities in low-income food-deficit countries, in particular in Africa, as an important measure to expand or rehabilitate needed community infrastructure, create employment and enhance household food security.
112. Strengthen support for South-South cooperation as a means to promote development in Africa and the least developed countries by enhancing investment and transfer of appropriate technology through mutually agreed arrangements, as well as promoting regional human resource development and development of technology through, inter alia, technology-promotion centres.
113. Support increased efforts of Governments to promote and strengthen human-resource development in Africa and the least developed countries, in partnership with civil society, to achieve quality basic education for all, while at the same time continuing to invest in secondary and tertiary education, and with enhanced cooperation of the international community.
114. Support the efforts of Governments to allocate additional resources to education and the management capacities of the educational sector, and improve enrolment ratios, particularly for girls and women.
115. Support steps taken by Governments to encourage skilled and highly educated Africans to remain in the region and to utilize and further develop their skills.
116. Urge developed countries to strive to fulfil as soon as possible the agreed target of earmarking 0.15 to 0.20 per cent of gross national product as official development assistance for the least developed countries.
117. Accord priority to the least developed countries by the international community, including by United Nations funds and programmes, as well as international and regional financial institutions, in the allocation of resources on concessional terms for economic and social development.
118. Encourage the United Nations and its affiliated agencies to enhance the provision of technical cooperation to the least developed countries. In this context, call for the strengthening of the integrated framework for trade-related technical assistance to the least developed countries./24
119. Encourage creditor countries to implement bilateral debt relief arrangements for the African and the least developed countries and stress that debt relief should contribute to national development objectives, including poverty eradication.
120. Give special attention to the least developed countries, in particular those in sub-Saharan Africa, in the implementation of the 20/20 initiative in cooperation with civil society in order to ensure access to basic social services for all.
121. Support the recommendations contained in the report of the Secretary-General/25 and in that context await the outcome of the open-ended ad hoc working group on the causes of conflict and promotion of durable peace and sustainable development in Africa.
122. Encourage the twenty-five African countries most affected by HIV/AIDS to adopt time-bound targets for reducing infection levels, such as a target for reducing infection levels in young people by 25 per cent by 2005, and invite the Joint United Nations Programme on HIV/AIDS, in conjunction with its co-sponsoring agencies, to prepare and propose means for implementing a strategy for achieving this target.
123. Support African Governments in expanding and strengthening programmes related to young people and HIV/AIDS by developing a collective strategy with the donor community, international organizations and non-governmental organizations, facilitated by the establishment of national young people's task forces, in order to ensure the necessary multisectoral response and the interventions to raise the awareness and address the needs of young people, as well as the needs of those living with HIV/AIDS and children orphaned by AIDS.
124. Invite the Joint United Nations Programme on HIV/AIDS and its co-sponsors, as part of the International Partnership Against AIDS in Africa, to support countries most affected by the HIV/AIDS pandemic, upon request, in their efforts:
- To allocate adequate resources, in particular financial resources, as well as wider access to quality medication by ensuring the provision and affordability of drugs, including a reliable distribution and delivery system; implementation of a strong generic drug policy; bulk purchasing; negotiation with pharmaceutical companies; appropriate financing systems; and encouragement of local manufacturing and import practices consistent with national laws and international agreements acceded to;
- To develop a strategy for resource mobilization for programmes on young people with their full involvement;
- To consolidate resources by creating or strengthening technical resource networks and identifying best practices at the country and regional levels;
- To develop a core set of indicators and tools to monitor implementation of youth programmes and progress towards achievement of the target to reduce infection levels in young people by 25 per cent by 2005.
125. Support African Governments and civil society organizations, inter alia, through the International Partnership Against AIDS in Africa and national programmes, in the provision of key services linked to social security, care and support, prevention and treatment of sexually transmitted infections, reduction of mother-to-child transmission, access to voluntary and confidential counselling and testing, and support of behavioural change and responsible sexual behaviour in order to scale up significantly efforts in Africa to curtail the spread of HIV, reduce the impact of HIV/AIDS and halt the further reversal of human, social and economic development.
126. Support and assist research and development centres in Africa and the least developed countries in the field of vaccines, medicine and public health, thereby strengthening training of medical personnel and counsellors, improving control and treatment of communicable and infectious diseases, such as HIV/AIDS, malaria and tuberculosis, as well as assisting in making vaccines and medicines for the control and treatment of these diseases widely available at affordable prices.
127. Encourage the international community to give its full support to an effective and successful outcome of the Third United Nations Conference on the Least Developed Countries to be held in Brussels in 2001.
128. Encourage international financial institutions and national Governments to adopt the principle of integration of social as well as economic aspects in the design of structural-adjustment as well as reform programmes.
129. Adjustment programmes to address economic crises, including those negotiated between national Governments and the International Monetary Fund, should strive to ensure that this process does not lead to a severe drop in economic activity or sharp cuts in social spending.
130. Encourage Governments and international financial institutions to improve the ongoing dialogue on the design, implementation and reform of structural adjustment programmes, ensuring the full integration of social and economic frameworks for protecting social policies and programmes so that such programmes are genuinely nationally owned and driven; such dialogue would benefit from consultations by Governments with relevant actors and organizations of civil society. Encourage the international financial institutions to take into account the specific circumstances of countries concerned in providing support to their structural adjustment programmes.
131. Encourage the development of nationally owned poverty reduction strategies as a way to facilitate the dialogue of Governments with development partners and as a tool for the integration of social goals in national development strategies.
132. Design national policies, taking into account concerns of people living in poverty, by incorporating social development goals in the formulation of structural adjustment programmes, including poverty reduction strategies, in consultation with civil society, with a particular emphasis on:
- Designing economic policies for more equitable and enhanced access to income and resources to promote sustained economic growth and sustainable development, taking fully into account economic and social programmes aimed at poverty reduction;
- Protecting core social development expenditures identified by individual Governments from budgetary cuts, especially in times of crises, and encouraging international development banks to support national efforts in this regard;
- Ensuring that public services reach people living in poverty and vulnerable groups as a matter of priority, particularly through strengthening existing social programmes;
- Implementing adjustment and stabilization policies in ways that protect people living in poverty as well as vulnerable groups;
- Preserving and enhancing the social capital and strengthening the social fabric of society;
- Taking into account the evolving concept of poverty reduction strategy papers.
133. Ensure transparency and accountability by both Governments and international financial institutions for improved efficacy of structural adjustment programmes and fulfilment of social development goals.
134. Establish participatory mechanisms to undertake assessment of the social impact of structural adjustment programmes and reform packages before, during and after the implementation process with a view to mitigating their negative impact and developing policies to improve their positive impact on social development goals. Such assessments might involve the support and cooperation of the United Nations system, including the Bretton Woods institutions, regional development banks and organizations of civil society.
135. Improve information-sharing and coordination between the Economic and Social Council and the relevant organizations of the United Nations system, including the Bretton Woods institutions, with a view to promoting social development and exploring ways and means to reduce the negative effects and improve the positive impact of structural adjustment programmes.
136. Ensure that gender issues are taken into account in the formulation and implementation of structural adjustment programmes.
137. Recommend that the high-level intergovernmental event on financing for development, to be held in 2001, consider the mobilization of national and international resources for social development for the implementation of the Copenhagen Declaration and Programme of Action.
138. With the assistance of the international community, upon request, strengthen national information systems to produce reliable and disaggregated statistics on social development in order to assess the impact of social policies on economic and social development as well as to ensure that economic and social resources are used efficiently and effectively.
139. Undertake efforts to mobilize domestic resources for social development in accordance with national priorities and policies, inter alia, by:
- Reallocating public resources for investment in social development, inter alia, through the appropriate reduction of excessive military expenditures, including global military expenditures and the arms trade, and investments for arms production and acquisition, taking into consideration national security requirements;
- Endeavouring to enhance the cost-effectiveness of social spending;
- Strengthening mechanisms and policies to attract and manage private investment, thus freeing and also increasing public resources for social investments;
- Facilitating ways and means for the involvement and active partnership of civil society in the provision of social services.
140. Taking into account the challenges of globalization facing developing countries, support Governments, at their request, in the establishment of guidelines for policies aimed at generating domestic revenue to pay for social services, social protection and other social programmes, inter alia, by:
- Promoting equitable and progressive broadening of the tax base;
- Improving the efficiency of tax administration, including tax collection;
- Seeking new sources of revenue which simultaneously may discourage public bads;
- Undertaking various forms of public borrowing, including issuance of bonds and other financial instruments to finance capital works.
141. Promote, through national action, the mobilization of new and additional resources for social development, inter alia, by:
- Extending access to microcredit and other financial instruments to people living in poverty, particularly women;
- Supporting community participation in the planning, provision and maintenance of local infrastructure, through mechanisms such as community contracting of labour-based works;
- 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;
- 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, as well as repatriating these funds to their countries of origin.
142. Promote, through international action, the mobilization of new and additional resources for social development, inter alia, by:
- Developing appropriate means of international cooperation in tax matters;
- Exploring methods for dividing the liability of multinational corporations to pay taxes on profits among the various jurisdictions in which they operate;
- Exploring ways to combat the use of tax shelters and tax havens that undermine national tax systems;
- Improving the existing mechanisms for helping to stabilize commodity export earnings so as to respond to the real concerns of developing country producers, taking into account the fact that commodity price instability has remained extremely high, with declining trends for a number of commodities;
- Preventing tax avoidance and promoting treaties for avoiding double taxation;
- Exploring ways and means to increase and widen flows of public and private financial resources to developing countries, especially least developed countries;
- Conducting a rigorous analysis of advantages, disadvantages and other implications of proposals for developing new and innovative sources of funding, both public and private, for dedication to social development and poverty eradication programmes;
- Exploring ways and means of promoting the micro- and small enterprise sector whereby it becomes a possible vehicle for a new development model.
143. Urge international action to support national efforts to attract additional resources for social development, in several important areas:
- Encouraging creditor countries and institutions to take action to achieve rapid progress towards faster, broader and deeper debt relief as agreed under the enhanced Heavily Indebted Poor Countries Debt Initiative, which already considers increased flexibility with regard to eligibility criteria and through other means, to help to alleviate the debt burdens of those countries covered by the Initiative, stressing that debt relief should contribute to development objectives, including poverty reduction, and in this regard urging countries to direct those resources freed through debt relief, in particular through debt cancellation and reduction, towards these objectives, consistent with General Assembly resolution 54/202 of 22 December 1999;
- Strengthening the institutional capacity of developing countries in debt management, calling upon the international community to support the efforts towards this end, and in this regard stressing the importance of such initiatives as the Debt Management and Financial Analysis System and the debt-management capacity-building programme;
- Calling for concerted national and international action to address effectively debt problems of low and middle-income developing countries with a view to resolving their potential long-term debt-sustainability problems through various debt-treatment measures, including, as appropriate, orderly mechanisms for debt reduction, and encouraging all creditor and debtor countries to utilize to the fullest extent possible, where appropriate, all existing mechanisms for debt reduction;
- Calling for continued international cooperation, including the reaffirmation to strive to fulfil the yet to be attained internationally agreed target of 0.7 per cent of the gross national product of developed countries for overall official development assistance as soon as possible, thereby increasing the flow of resources for social development;
- Encouraging donor and recipient countries, based on mutual agreement and commitment, to implement fully the 20/20 initiative, in line with the Oslo and Hanoi Consensus documents,/26 to ensure universal access to basic social services;
- Providing concessional financing for social development programmes and projects to support the efforts of developing countries to achieve social development goals and targets;
- Providing landlocked countries and transit developing countries with appropriate technical and financial assistance in their efforts to implement the outcome of the Summit, particularly in addressing their special needs and problems;
- Implementing the commitments regarding the special needs and vulnerabilities of the small island developing States, in particular by providing effective means, including adequate, predictable, new and additional resources for social development programmes, in accordance with the Programme of Action for the Sustainable Development of Small Island Developing States /27 and the results of the twenty-second special session of the General Assembly/28 and on the basis of the relevant provisions of the Programme of Action.
144. Promote greater efficiency and effectiveness in the use of resources for social development.
145. Invite Governments to consider sector-wide approaches for the achievement of social development goals, in accordance with overall national development goals and priorities.
146. Develop, strengthen and make more effective indicators at the national level for assessing and guiding social development, in collaboration with research institutions and civil society, as appropriate. These could include quantitative and qualitative indicators for assessing, inter alia, the social and gender impact of policies. Also develop and strengthen national information systems to produce reliable statistics on social and economic development. The relevant bodies of the United Nations and other relevant institutions should support, upon request, these national efforts.
147. Invite the Statistical Commission, with the assistance of the Statistics Division of the Department of Economic and Social Affairs of the Secretariat and in close cooperation with other relevant bodies of the United Nations system, including the Administrative Committee on Coordination, and, as appropriate, other relevant international organizations, to review, with a view to facilitating future consideration by the Economic and Social Council, the work undertaken in harmonizing and rationalizing basic indicators in the context of follow-up to United Nations conferences and summits, taking fully into account the decisions taken in other functional and regional commissions, and in that process to identify a limited number of common indicators from among those currently accepted and widely used by the States Members of the United Nations in order to lessen the data-provision burden on Member States, bearing in mind the work done so far in this area.
148. Strengthen cooperation at the regional level, which might include:
- Promoting dialogue among regional and subregional groups and organizations;
- Encouraging regional commissions to initiate or continue evaluation of the implementation of the Copenhagen Declaration and Programme of Action and the further initiatives contained in the present document;
- Encouraging the implementation of regional social development agendas where they exist; encouraging recipient countries, donor Governments and agencies and multilateral financial institutions to take greater account of the regional social development agenda of regional commissions and regional and subregional organizations, including in their funding policies and programmes.
149. Further strengthen the Economic and Social Council as the body primarily responsible for coordinating international action in follow-up to United Nations conferences and summits, which could include:
- Fostering a closer working relationship with the United Nations funds and programmes and the specialized agencies;
- Supporting continuing existing cooperation between the Economic and Social Council and the Bretton Woods institutions and joint meetings with the World Bank and the International Monetary Fund, so that the objectives and policy approaches of the United Nations conferences and summits are given due consideration by those institutions.
150. Promote South-South cooperation, particularly in terms of economic and technical cooperation, and support triangular mechanisms whereby donors would provide appropriate support.
151. Promote the full realization of the right to development and the elimination of obstacles to development through, inter alia, the implementation of the provisions of the Declaration on the Right to Development11 as reaffirmed by the Vienna Declaration and Programme of Action adopted by the World Conference on Human Rights on 25 June 1993./29
152. Continue work on a wide range of reforms to create a strengthened and more stable international financial system, enabling it to deal more effectively and in a timely manner with the new challenges of development.
153. Consider the establishment, as appropriate, of national mechanisms, where they do not already exist, for the implementation of the Copenhagen Declaration and Programme of Action and the further initiatives contained in the present document.
154. Invite parliamentarians to continue to adopt legislative measures and to expand awareness-raising, necessary for implementing the commitments of the World Summit for Social Development and the further initiatives contained in the present document, and encourage the contribution of the Inter-Parliamentary Union in this effort.
155. Invite the Economic and Social Council to consolidate the ongoing initiatives and actions established in the Copenhagen Declaration and Programme of Action, the first United Nations Decade for the Eradication of Poverty (1997 - 2006) and the recommendations contained in the present document with a view to launching a global campaign to eradicate poverty.
156. Commit ourselves and encourage the United Nations system and all other relevant actors to take further determined sustained action to implement the commitments of the Copenhagen Declaration and Programme of Action and the results of the current special session of the General Assembly, entitled "World Summit for Social Development and beyond: achieving social development for all in a globalizing world", and request the Economic and Social Council to assess regularly, through the Commission for Social Development, the further implementation of the Copenhagen commitments and the outcome of the special session, not excluding the possibility of bringing together, at the appropriate time, all parties involved to evaluate progress and to consider new initiatives.