Tuesday, 01 July 2014 00:00

The Road to Busan

The global community will be meeting in Busan-South Korea in November 2011. The purpose of this meeting will be to conduct a review on the progress of implementation of AAA (Accra Agenda for Action) and the Paris Declaration.

 Background

This decade has witnessed dramatic changes in Africa, in particular sub Saharan Africa particularly in the area of development finance and the aid architecture. The changes have resulted from the need of the world to achieve the Millennium Development Goals as well as the need to make aid more effective.

The ensuing changes have been characterized by the demand for aid to be delivered in more quantities and better quality than before. There has also been an increased call for more voice for civil society organizations and parliament on aid effectiveness. The demand for more reforms in the way aid is managed and utilized from both the donor and the recipient is supported by Monterrey consensus, the Millennium Development Goals, the Paris declaration and the Accra Agenda for Action.  There is some hope that a new set of principles can be realized. This new set of principles should reflect the demands of development effectiveness in the context of strengthening and deepening the outcomes of the current principles for the next international development finance architecture in Busan.

Although development aid continues to dwindle in the light of the current financial and climatic crisis, ODA is and will remain one of the most important sources of development financing for Africa. It is with this in mind that review of reforms aimed at improving ownership, harmonization, coordination, management for results need intensified to inform the next set of Action beyond Busan. Increasing political pressure to implement the already agreed targets while negotiating for a better more effective aid architecture in Busan must remain a priority for Africa. The objective must be to increase the effectiveness of development aid.

Bolder steps and action must be taken if the overall effect on poverty reduction is to be realized and the path to sustainable development established. Key challenges still exist in this regard that is,  the donors have not matched their rhetoric with action in terms of additional resources, aid is still volatile, and donor conditionality still remain a key impediment to the achievement of real development effectiveness. From the African side, there still exists weak leadership and ownership of development programs, as well as slow pace of reforms in the systemic issues in the public finance management and budget making process.

For Busan to realize its key objectives, its outcome must address the development needs of people living in poverty by reducing their vulnerability. The outcome document must facilitate the realization of the rights of the poor, and their access to basic social services, including education, and health services are guaranteed. As a result there must be a change in the widening gap in class, gender, and ethnic relations in Sub Saharan Africa.

Rationale

Preparations are under way in many parts of the world towards Busan. While other regions including Latin America have adopted a regional as well as national approach in their preparation, Africa’s preparation remains at best at the national level and within the relevant ministry. At worst, a total lack of preparation. At the global level, the international community has only committed resources through the OECD to facilitate the participation of African countries to HLFIV. What is lacking is a process that facilitates a dialogue and consensus building across the continent. It is with this in mind that the three main regional organizations i.e. the African Forum and Network o Debt and Development, FEMNET and Reality of Aid Africa Network have teamed up to host a pan African Multistakeholder conference on Consolidation the African Position Towards Busan.

The upcoming Pan African conference will enable African stakeholders to exchange experiences and share lessons for cross learning on evidence emanating from the African case studies conducted by the hosting organisations. The case studies results highlighted some of the fundamental issues that impede aid effectiveness despite the efforts to work within the framework of the (PD) and AAA over the past years.

The results of the case studies will form an important part of the core evidence in consolidating the African position, drawing on good practices for policy advocacy.  The conference will provide a major opportunity for Africa further to work towards an agreed common position on financing for development effectiveness, thus continue to chart a sustainable trajectory for the Continent.

Core Objectives

The overall objective of the Pan African conference is to consolidate key messages from Africa on Aid Effectiveness and Development Effectiveness to the 4HLF for a final Position focusing on;

Consolidating positions from various research work done of the status of the PD and AAA agenda and the thematic groups and sub regions declarations/statements into one African multistakeholder position

Provide a multistakeholder based African input into the Busan Outcomes document;

Strategize on consolidating Africa’s participation and voice on Development Effectiveness at the HLF4;

Identify explicit strategic positions that Africa will champion for proper integration in enhancing development Effectiveness,

Meeting Methodology

The Pan African conference will have presentations, panel sessions and plenary on both technical and strategic issues.  A draft annotated agenda will be shared in advance for multi-stakeholder input.

Participation

Approximately 90 participants, representing African governments, regional bodies and civil society who have been selected to go to Busan, are expected at this high level pan African meeting.   

Language

The meeting will be conducted in English and French.

Duration and Venue

The meeting will take place over a course of two (2) days, proposed for 25-26 October 2011. 

 Source of Funding for Forum and Related Activities

As of today, the engagement will be funded through contributions from the hosting organizations with the possibility of further support from other partners.

 


In recent decades, African countries have had the highest levels of inequality in income, according to a 2005 study by the UN Department of Economic and Social Affairs (DESA), The Inequality Predicament. The continent in the periods of 80s and 90s a double growth in the number of people with less than a dollar a day Their numbers climbed from 288 million in 1981 to 516 million in 2001.

The Evaluation of Paris Declaration, May 2011point out that “Donor countries and agencies need to harness at high level political level instruments of constructive peer pressure for better collective performance”

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