Excerpts from the Statement by
Permanent Representative of Mongolia
to the United Nations on Agenda item entitled
"Implementation of the outcome of the World Summit for social development"
52nd Session of UNGA,
Mongolia attaches great importance to the consideration by the Plenary of the Agenda item entitled "Implementation of the World Summit for Social Development".
Peaceful advancement of the humankind and its safe livelihood can no longer be sustained in a world impregnated by abject poverty, external debt burden, growing technological and economic gap between the rich and the poor, wide-spread hunger and malnutrition, violence and discrimination, drugs and infectious diseases.
Cognizant of the urgency to adequately address these problems, the international community has taken in the early 1990s various actions, through inter alia, organizing a series of world summits and conferences, proclaiming and observing UN decades and international years on specific social issues and target groups.
The agreements reached at these conferences form a strong basis for development cooperation and for the United Nations' future role in these areas. It is to be pointed out that development cooperation has been given a people-centered, sustainable, gender-sensetive and social dimentions.
In order to consolidate the basis for development cooperation, all have to come to realize that we all depend on one another for sustained development and progress. Coordination of policies and joint decision-making at the global level are required if we wish to move closer to the aim of securing the life of dignity for humankind now and in the future. Effective action to realize the undertakings agreed upon require both the means as well as streamlining of efforts and activities.
The Copenhagen Declaration on Social development and Programme of Action of the World Summit for Social Development envisage both national and international developmental efforts, recognizing that while social development remains a national responsibility, the support, collective commitment and efforts of the international community are essential for achieving the goals set out in Copenhagen.
Mongolia welcomes the Secretary General's Report on "Implementation of the outcome of the World Summit for Social Development" containing rich information on the implementation of the outcome of the Copenhagen Summit. It is gratifying to note the growing initiatives undertaken at the national, regional and international levels.
The Micro Credit Summit, which was held in Washington D.C. last February, and attended from by representatives of 137 countries, including Mongolia, recognized and practice has confirmed, that building institutions capable of providing micro finance services was one the viable strategies in eradicating poverty and promoting small businesses.
Mongolia strongly believes that the implementation of the Summit decisions calls for serious political commitment on the part of the international community to substantially increase resources for sustainable human development.
Mongolia welcomes also the Report on the World Social Situation - 1997,prepared by the former UN Department for Economic and Social Information and Policy Analysis (DESIPA) , the first report after the Copenhagen Summit. Its coverage of outstanding social issues are broader and extensive, giving clear picture of the world social situation.
The Government of Mongolia considers that one of the practical ways to raise living standards of the population and to reduce poverty is to increase employment opportunities. Therefore, the Government is actively pursuing policy of human resource development. As pointed out in the Secretary General's Report "Implementation of the outcome of the World Summit for Social Development", the Mongolian National Pogramme on Poverty Alleviation (NPPA) had been launched in 1994. Its major aim is to promote employment and income generation opportunities, especially in rural areas and among disadvantaged women, create social safety nets for the poor and seek incorporation of poverty alleviation goals in all aspects of policy making. The NPPA is carried out in conjunction with the Population Policy of Mongolia, and the National Programme of Advancement of Women, and is also to be assisted by a National Programme on Employment Generation now under active consideration.
The NPPA's overall aim is to reduce the number of people in poverty from 26 percent of the population to 10 percent by the year 2000. It focuses on strengthening the institutional capacities of the government at both central and local levels, on policy management and poverty monitoring, promoting human resources development through providing better access to health and education opportunities, on alleviating rural poverty, on good governance and developing and strengthening the basic social safety net.
The Government of Mongolia is committed to pursue this policy by allocating 20 per cent of its annual budget as well as 20 per cent of all foreign aid and assistance to social development activities, by adopting the 20/20 formula agreed at the World Summit. At the same time, the Government is working to create the conditions for everyone to complete education and training as well as to ensure that those engaged in productive labour receive sufficient social guarantee to meet their health and other requirements. The Government intends to meet these goals by the year 2000.
Mongolia is aware that without visible socio-economic progress, the process of democratization, especially when it is carried out simultaneously with the economic transition, as is the case with Mongolia, can face the difficult challenges of social instability. Following the Washington Micro Credit Summit, late last June the Government has organized a national forum on small credits which discussed the ways in which the poor and the disadvantaged can be given greater access to productive assets and resources.
The Mongolian Human Development Report has been launched recently in cooperation with UNDP, which identified and established the social benchmarks against which actions aimed at social development can be assessed. This report is the first assessment of Mongolia's human development situation. All national development efforts need a vision - a focal point to make co-ordinated and sustained improvements - supported by political will, people's participation and solid organizational and financial backings.
I would like to underline that Mongolia's interaction with the United Nations, its agencies and other international organizations, as well as our bilateral cooperation with the member-states have and continue to play a valuable role in overcoming underdevelopment, the hardships inherent to transitional period as well as meeting the pressing socio-economic challenges. In this connection, I would like to express the gratitude of my Government to the donor countries, the United Nations and other international institutions for their continued support and assistance extended to my country.
In conclusion, I wish to express my delegation's sincere hope that the ongoing deliberations on the implementation of the outcome of the Social Summit will help generate renewed political will at the national, regional and international levels to attain the noble objectives of the sustainable human development.