International Day For South-South Cooperation

  • The countries of the South have contributed to more than half of the world’s growth in recent years.
  • Intra-south trade is higher than ever, accounting for more than a quarter of all world trade.
  • The outflows of foreign direct investment from the South represent a third of the global flows.

UND - South-South Cooperation

The best example of solidarity among countries

South-South cooperation is a manifestation of solidarity among peoples and countries of the South that contributes to their national well-being, their national and collective self-reliance and the attainment of internationally agreed development goals, including the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development.

Taking into account the current pandemic, these types of collaborations are now more important than ever. Several countries of the global South have already demonstrated effective responses to contain the outbreak and mitigate its impact. Apart from the immediate demand that is already being expressed by countries from their partners of the South, going forward, least developed countries (LDCs) and other less developed countries of the South will want to learn and exchange lessons with countries that have demonstrated efficient health systems, effective governance mechanisms, leadership, coordination, communication, and community cohesion during the crisis.

Examples of this collaborative spirit can be found in the response of the United Nations Office for South-South Cooperation (UNOSSC), the UN focal point for promoting and facilitating South-South and triangular cooperation for development on a global and United Nations system-wide basis. The Office is supporting the countries of the Global South to fight the pandemic and its social and economic fallout through the modalities of South-South and triangular cooperation. For example, the India-UN Development Partnership Fund, managed by UNOSSC, is working rapidly to support projects that respond to COVID-19 across the Global South. Another example is the India, Brazil and South Africa Facility for Poverty and Hunger Alleviation, which supported an e-Learning project to improve health-care coverage and quality in Viet Nam that has proven to be successful in reaching health-care workers in remote medical settings, and is now being used to respond to COVID-19. The Office is also engaging with other partners such as the Islamic Development Bank to respond to the COVID-19 crisis in different regions of the South. In the spirit of South-South solidarity and cooperation, developing countries are helping each other to bridge unprecedented gaps in capacity, and sharing lessons on how to flatten the growth curve of the virus.

It is clear that South-South cooperation is and will be more important than ever before. For that reason, the United Nations Day for South-South Cooperation is spreading awareness of the economic, social and political developments made recently by regions and countries in the South and highlights United Nations efforts to work on technical cooperation among developing countries.

United Nations Day for South-South Cooperation will host a virtual high-level event 2 days prior to the observance and ahead of the celebration of the 75th anniversary of the United Nations. It will provide an opportunity to reflect on the vital role of international solidarity, while effectively responding to the global COVID-19 crisis. During the event, participants will be invited to highlight the role of South-South and triangular cooperation as an important element of their strategies.

The event will also feature the launch of the publication “Good Practices in South-South and Triangular Cooperation for Sustainable Development – Vol. 3.” The new volume features more than 200 good practices presented by 35 Member States, 23 United Nations entities and many other development partners including civil society organizations and the private sector.


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