United Nations Conference on Trade and Development (UNCTAD)

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United Nations Conference on Trade and Development (UNCTAD) is the principal organ of the United Nations General Assembly dealing with trade, investment, and development issues. It was established in 1964 as a permanent intergovernmental body. The organization’s goals are to: “maximize the trade, investment, and development opportunities of developing countries and assist them in their efforts to integrate into the world economy on an equitable basis.

UNO declared 1960-70 as the development decade. In 1961, UNO attempted to increase the income of developing countries with the growth rate of 5% p.a. during that development decade. In July 1960, a conference of developing countries was held in Cairo which resolved to convene a world conference for this purpose. Economic and Social Council of UNO organize a World Trade and Development Conference from March 31, 1964, to July 16, 1964. A worldwide International Trade Policy was determined in this conference. Various issues related to the extension of international trade of developing countries were also discussed in that conference. The conference came to be known as UNCTAD-I.

Presently, it has become a permanent organization for promoting international trade with its headquarter at Geneva (Switzerland), Mr. Allec Irwin is its present Chairman. Generally, it has its session after four years. IMF has got the permanent representation in all its bodies. This is the reason why IMF includes all United Nations Conference on Trade and Development (UNCTAD) proposals in its policies. Its recommendations are only suggestions and no country can be compelled to accept them.

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The details are as follows:

UNCTAD I Cairo Mar 31 – June 16, 1964
UNCTAD II New Delhi Feb – March 1968
UNCTAD III Santiago (Chile) April – May 1972
UNCTAD IV Nairobi (Africa) May 1976
UNCTAD V Manila (Philippines) May 7 – June 2, 1979
UNCTAD VI Belgrade (Yugoslavia) June 6 – July 3, 1983
UNCTAD VII Geneva (Switzerland) 1987
UNCTAD VIII Cartegina DE Indias (Colombia) 1992
UNCTAD IX Midrand (Africa) April 27 – May 11, 1996
UNCTAD X Bangkok (Thailand) Feb 12 – Feb 19, 2000
UNCTAD XI Sao-Paulo (Brazil) June 13 – June 18, 2004
UNCTAD XII Accra (Ghana) April 20 – April 25, 2008
UNCTAD XIII Doha (Qatar) 21 – 26 April 2012
UNCTAD XIV Nairobi (Kenya) 17 to 22 July 2016

 

Objectives of United Nations Conference on Trade and Development

  1. To promote international trade especially with the view to accelerating the economic development of underdeveloped countries.
  2. To determine policies and principles for international trade and economic development.
  3. To propose the strategy for implementing pre-approved principles and policies.
  4. To assist Economic and Social Council of the UNO.
  5. To provide a suitable platform for trade dialogues.

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Members of United Nations Conference on Trade and Development

Though it is functioning as a permanent agency of the UNO, but its membership is fully optional. Any country may join or quit. The functions of the United Nations Conference on Trade and Development is that on democratic principles every member has only one voting right. For general disputes, the simple majority among present members but the two- third majority is needed for important issues.

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Important Funding Agencies of the World

The International Fund for Agricultural Development (IFAD)