Statement by Ms. O. ENKHTSETSEG,

Director, Department of Multilateral Cooperation,

Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Mongolia

 

Preparations for the International Ministerial Conference

on Transit Transport Cooperation

 

October 3, 2002

 

 

Mr. Chairman,

 

At the outset, I wish to extend my delegations high appreciation to the Under-Secretary-General, High Representative for LDCs, LLDCs, and SIDS Ambassador Anwarul K. Chowdhury for his lucid presentation of the agenda item 84(f). We also thank UNCTAD and Division for Development Policy Analysis for their introduction.

 

My delegation will confine its intervention today to the agenda item 84(f) on preparations for the International Ministerial Conference on Transit Transport Cooperation. 

We would like to associate ourselves to the statements made by the distinguished Representative of Venezuela on behalf of Group 77 and China and by the distinguished Representative of the Lao People’s Democratic Republic on behalf of the Group of Land-locked Developing Countries. 

The lack of a territorial access to the sea, compounded by remoteness and isolation from the world markets constitute a major obstacle to the development efforts of land-locked developing countries. Land-locked developing countries, which are largely commodity exporters, depend heavily on the reliable and efficient transit transport services. As estimated, on average, the landlocked developing countries spend two times more of their export earnings for the transport and insurance services as compared to the other developing countries and three times more than the average of developed countries. While also levied by tariffs entering foreign markets, the exports from these countries are heavily hampered by much higher transport costs thus further reducing their trade gains and competitive edge. Moreover, great distances from world markets and underdeveloped transit transport infrastructure tend to frighten FDI flows to this group of disadvantaged countries. Hence, my delegation along with the other like-minded fellow members attach particular importance to the upcoming International Ministerial Conference on Transit Transport Cooperation scheduled for 2003 in Kazakhstan. Effectively addressing the special needs of LLDCs will undoubtedly contribute to the national efforts of these countries to attain the MDGs.

 

We look forward to the International Ministerial Conference on Transit Transport Cooperation to result in a global program of action with specific commitments as envisaged in the Ministerial Communique of the Third Ministerial Meeting of LLDCs of 17 September 2002. To this end, we expect that the relevant draft resolution sponsored by the group of LLDCs would command the broadest possible support of this Committee in the coming weeks.

 

Mr. Chairman,

 

My delegation wishes to add its voice to the appeal made by the Under-Secretary-General Anwarul K. Chowdhury to actively participate in the campaign launched recently by the High Representative together with the Secretary-General of UNCTAD to mobilize voluntary resources to facilitate the preparatory process for the International Ministerial Conference. In this regard, my delegation wishes to pledge its full support to the office of the High Representative for LDCs, LLDCs and SIDS and express its high appreciation to the Under-Secretary-General Anwarul K. Chowdhury for his energetic efforts to actively engage all the relevant stakeholders in the Ministerial Conference and its preparatory process.

 

My delegation wishes to take this opportunity to express its gratitude and appreciation to UNCTAD for its continued support of the efforts of LLDCs in general, and of our endeavors, in particular, to develop a trilateral Framework Agreement on transit transportation between Mongolia, the People’s Republic of China and the Russian Federation, which we expect to be finalized, hopefully, prior to the International Ministerial Conference.

 

Thank you.