SESSION OF THE UN GENERAL ASSEMBLY
6 October 2009
STATEMENT BY MRS. ONON SODOV,
DIRECTOR, DEPARTMENT OF INTERNATIONAL ORGANISATIONS OF
THE MINISTRY OF FOREIGN AFFAIRS AND TRADE OF MONGOLIA
ON AGENDA ITEM 63 - SOCIAL DEVELOPMENT
Allow me to join the previous speakers in extending my delegation’s sincere congratulations to you and other colleagues in the Bureau on your unanimous election. I am confident that under your skillful leadership we will have constructive deliberations leading to the fruitful and successful work of the Committee. I pledge my delegation’s full support in discharge of your important duties.
My delegation wishes also to associate itself with the statement made yesterday by the distinguished representative of Sudan on behalf of the Group 77 and China.
My delegation commends the reports submitted by the Secretary-General under this item of the agenda,
Mongolia took an active part in the Copenhagen World Summit on Social Development in 1995 and stands fully committed to continue its cooperation with the Member States, with the UN system and all other stakeholders towards achieving the goals of the Summit of a people-centered approach to development.
The relevance of the World Summit on Social Development commitments on poverty eradication, full employment and social integration remains of utmost importance today. Global financial, food and fuel crises pose tremendous challenges to income security, employment and social protection. Climate change in its turn affects the livelihoods of many people, especially in developing countries.
According to the report on the world economic situation and prospects as of mid-2009, the Department of Economic and Social Affairs estimates that between 73 and 103 million more people will remain poor or fall into poverty in comparison with a situation in which pre-crisis growth continued. The Food and Agriculture Organisation estimates that hunger will reach more than 1 billion people in 2009. The ILO forecasts that continued labour market deterioration around the world in 2009 will produce an estimated increase in global unemployment of between 39 and 61 million workers relative to 2007, which could result in global unemployment ranging from 219 to 241 million – the highest level ever on record. These figures are alarming. The current global crises are reversing progress that has been achieved so far towards the internationally agreed development goals including MDGs.
The President of Mongolia in his statement at the General debate of the current session of the UN General Assembly highlighted that “in all our policies and actions we need to focus on people, on human costs of overcoming the dire consequences of multiple crises”.
It is acknowledged that cooperatives play an important role in socio-economic development. Cooperatives are particularly relevant in difficult economic times and instances of market failures. As rightly pointed out in the Secretary-General’s report on Cooperatives in Development, cooperatives promote and support entrepreneurial development, creating productive employment, raising incomes and helping to reduce poverty while enhancing social inclusion, social protection and community-building.
Moreover cooperatives make a difference in the lives of the impoverished and the marginalized. The advantages of cooperatives, however, go far beyond the eradication of poverty and an increase in household income. The cooperative model of business allows people to assert greater control over their livelihoods and to promote full participation of many, including women, youth, older persons and people with disabilities in economic and social development.
The history of cooperatives movement development in Mongolia goes back to early 1920-s. However, cooperatives have been transformed into autonomous, voluntarily united associations jointly owned and democratically controlled by their members in 1990-s when the country started its transition from a centrally-planned to a market economy system.
Over the past years the Government of Mongolia has undertaken a number of measures aimed at creating a sound legislative and regulatory framework and ensuring an enabling environment for further development of the cooperatives.
In 1995 the Parliament of Mongolia adopted a new Law on Cooperatives which was subsequently amended in 1998, 2003 and 2006. In addition to that, a Law on Customs and Value Added Tax Exemption was amended in July this year. The law envisages tax exemption on equipment and spare parts for small and medium enterprises including cooperatives.
Recently the Government of Mongolia has also approved a “National Programme on Cooperatives’ Development for the period 2009-2017”. The Programme aims at
· supporting cooperatives by creating more favourable legal environment,
· providing economic, financial and investment support,
· increasing participation of relevant stakeholders in cooperatives’ development,
· creating marketing network and,
· promoting training and advertising of cooperatives.
The above-mentioned measures led to the growth of cooperatives. As of 2008, there are approximately 1700 cooperatives with over two hundred thousand members in Mongolia today. It is estimated that cooperatives account for about 50 thousand jobs in agriculture and hunting sector, forestry. wholesale and retail trade, manufacturing and service sector.
The delegation of Mongolia welcomes and is encouraged by the broad support of Member States and ICA members participated in a survey to determine the desirability and feasibility of proclaiming an International Year of Cooperatives. I wish to refer to the recommendation under para.69 (a) of the Secretary-General’s report on Cooperatives in Social Development. The recommendation invites Governments and International organizations, in partnership with cooperatives and cooperative organization to approve and support the proposed International Year of Cooperatives as a global initiative to promote cooperatives and raise awareness of their socio-economic contributions.
In this regard Mongolia being an initiator of the Resolution on Cooperatives in Social Development appeals to the Member States to support proclaiming of the IYC in 2012.
Thank you for attention.