New York, 25 September 2017 – The Turkic Council and the United Nations Office for South-South Cooperation (UNOSSC) held an event on the margins of the Seventy-second General Assembly of the United Nations. Entitled South-South in Action: How the Turkic Council Uses South-South Cooperation to Promote Regional and Global Development the event highlighted the importance of this modality for achieving the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development.
The event also featured the launch of a joint Turkic Council-UNOSSC South-South in Action (SSiA) report outlining and celebrating the work of the Turkic Council in this area. The joint report can be accessed at https://www.unsouthsouth.org/library/publications/south-south-in-action-series/.
Since signing a memorandum of understanding in 2016, the Turkic Council and UNOSSC have been working to develop closer ties. This includes working together on the organization of the 2017 Global South-South Development (GSSD) Expo. Hosted by the Government of Turkey, the GSSD Expo is an annual event organized by UNOSSC that is designed to showcase and share proven Southern-grown development solutions. The 2017 Expo will be held in Antalya, Turkey from 27 to 30 November. More information on the Expo can be found at www.expo.unsouthsouth.org.
In his keynote address, Ambassador Ramil Hasanov, Secretary General of the Turkic Council, noted that the Turkic Council is proud to be the first international organization to co-author an SSiA publication. He informed the audience of the many activities the Council is implementing through innovative South-South collaboration. Underlining that the report, with its holistic approach presents a “true summary of the efforts that the Council carries out through the lenses of South-South cooperation”, he expressed that the case studies on tourism, customs, and diplomacy presented in the report are exemplary to this end. Referring also to the ongoing fruitful cooperation of the Council with UNDP, he noted that the report is also a summary of the Turkic Council’s efforts for the achievement of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) putting a special emphasis on SDGs 4, 5, 8, 9, 16 and 17. Lastly, Secretary General Hasanov expressed full support for the success of the GSSD Expo 2017, during which the Council will jointly organize a solution forum with UNDP.
In his keynote address, Mr. Jorge Chediek, Envoy of the United Nations Secretary-General on South-South Cooperation and Director, UNOSSC praised the work of the Turkic Council. He noted that regional organizations such as the Turkic Council are of utmost importance for achieving the 2030 Agenda, since they bring together countries and peoples who share socio-economic, historic, and linguistic ties. He praised the Turkic Council as a great example of countries of the South coming together to take charge of their own development and development priorities. In the address, he noted a continuing lack of South-South reports and publications, arguing that “one of our challenges is making available Southern knowledge, so that countries from the South can learn from each other”. Mr Chediek emphasized that UNOSSC is facilitating a process through which Southern knowledge, like that generated by the Turkic Council, will be channeled into the second High-level United Nations Conference on South-South Cooperation, which United Nations Member States have decided to convene to mark the 40th anniversary of the Buenos Aries Plan of Action (BAPA) in March 2019.
H.E. Mr. Nassir Abdulaziz Al-Nasser, High Representative for the United Nations Alliance of Civilizations, congratulated the two organizations on the launch of the report.
Representatives from the Member States of the Turkic Council – Azerbaijan, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, and Turkey – and other United Nations Member States including Thailand participated in the event.
Closing remarks were provided by Ms. Cihan Sultanoğlu, Assistant Administrator and Director of the Regional Bureau for Europe and the Commonwealth of Independent States, UNDP. Ms. Sultanoğlu praised the two organizations for the joint report. She noted that for UNDP “South-South cooperation is no longer theoretical – it is our modus operandi and is integrated into everything we do”. She called for a similar UNDP-UNOSSC-Turkic Council joint event to be organized annually on the sidelines of the United Nations General Assembly.
The Turkic Council, an intergovernmental organization based in Istanbul, serves as a regional instrument for advancing international cooperation across the Eurasian continent, particularly in Central Asia and Caucasus through promoting deeper relations and solidarity among its Member States as well as in the region.
The United Nations Office for South-South Cooperation was established by the United Nations General Assembly in 1974 with a mandate to advocate for and coordinate South-South and triangular cooperation on a global and United Nations system-wide basis.
For more information:
Mr. Mithre Sandrasagra
Strategic Communications Advisor, UNOSSC
Ms. Pelin Musabay Baki
Project Director, Turkic Council