South-South cooperation continues to feature as one of the international community’s primary priorities for inclusive development. Highlighting global action that puts the economic, social, and political equality of developing countries at the forefront, South-South cooperation emphasizes solidarity and mutual benefit through collaborative initiatives. As such, AIPR marks the date of September 12 as the United Nations Day for South-South Cooperation, recognizing the critical role played by developing countries on the global stage.
Initially celebrated on December 14 (and later moved to September 12 in honor of the 1978 Buenos Aires Plan of Action for Promoting and Implementing Technical Cooperation among Developing Countries), the annual UN Day for South-South Cooperation was established by the UN General Assembly through Resolution 58/220 on December 23, 2003. The observance serves as a platform for the international community to celebrate recent achievements, share best practices, and identify new avenues for collaboration between the countries of the Global South.
On the occasion of the 2015 United Nations Day for South-South Cooperation, UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon remarked that:
Despite ongoing challenges, developing countries have become critical actors in the global socioeconomic landscape. A majority have joined the middle-income club, and some have attained impressive economic growth, high savings and investment rates, and a larger share of trade in goods and services.
As we embark on efforts to achieve the Sustainable Development Goals, we need to accelerate development momentum across the South, including by building resilience and mitigating risk. This will require attention to the needs of the most vulnerable by enhancing the productive capacities of Least Developed Countries and improving access to environmentally sound technologies, education, essential medicines and credit.
The United Nations Office for South-South Cooperation (UNOSSC), established in 1974 to “promote technical co-operation among developing countries”, now also works to “coordinate and support South-South and triangular cooperation” within the UN System and around the world. In May of 2016, the High-level Committee on South-South Cooperation met for their 19th Session at the United Nations Headquarters in New York. As outlined by the Outcome Document, the Session allowed Committee members to review and follow-up on actions and goals produced by previous events.
In recognizing the importance of continuing to institutionalize advances made in the name of South-South cooperation, the Auschwitz Institute urges the international community to increase its support for these efforts, which contribute towards durable peace and development. Furthermore, AIPR reaffirms its own commitment to continue facilitating cooperative arrangements between States of the Global South. Eugenia Carbone, Director of AIPR’s Latin American Program commented on the importance of this initiative:
In this context, AIPR is proud to be able to channel, through its Africa and Latin American Programs, concrete efforts for interaction and the exchange of experiences and best practices between public officials in both regions. In particular, the Raphael Lemkin Seminar for the Prevention of Genocide and Mass Atrocities allows us to promote South-South cooperation as an effective platform for the construction of peace and stability.