For Immediate Release
World Leaders Reach Development Agreement at UN Summit
ADDIS ABABA, ETHIOPIA - Heads of state and high-level government officials reached a global development agreement during the Third Annual Financing for Development Conference. Negotiations reached a sticking point over a global tax body that would propose global tax policies to assist the developing world in raising new revenues. The agreement does focus on significantly curbing corruption and tax evasion by 2030. Governments finally negotiated a deal Wednesday after three days of marathon meetings to approve the agreement text. The agreement will be formally adopted on Thursday in a vote at the UN Economic Commission for Africa.
"The final negotiations were challenging," said Eric LeCompte, who participated in the summit as the Executive Director of the religious development group Jubilee USA Network. "But now we have an agreement and we need to keep working together because people's lives hang in the balance."
The ten paragraphs focused on debt reached Addis Ababa already agreed upon by the negotiators. These issues were also central to past Financing for Development agreements, as negotiators argue that strengthening these polices can raise billions of dollars a year for the developing world. Central debt issues include improving debt restructuring, promoting transparency in lending and borrowing and stopping so-called "vulture funds."
"Consensus came quickly during earlier negotiations in New York on a menu of options to stop predatory hedge funds," said LeCompte, who serves on UN expert groups that have long sought to tackle this type of investment behavior. "World leaders unanimously condemn these actors who take advantage of countries facing financial crisis."
LeCompte is scheduled to appear on the final official UN round table on Thursday to discuss follow-up on debt, trade, tax and other "systemic issues" from the outcome document.
"We can only end poverty if we address the systems that perpetuate poverty," said LeCompte. "That's why world leaders focus so specifically on debt, tax and trade policies."
Read more about the Third Financing for Development Conference.
See the schedule for the final round table: Ensuring policy coherence and an enabling environment at all levels for sustainable development.
Read Eric LeCompte's speech on solutions for "vulture funds" during UNCTAD's side event, Dealing with Uncooperative Creditors in Sovereign Debt Workouts.
THE LAST FIREWALL AGAINST THE LIES
Independent media has become the last firewall against government and corporate lies. Yet, with frightening regularity, independent media sources are losing funding, closing down or being blacked out by Google and Facebook. Never before has independent media been more endangered. If you believe in Common Dreams, if you believe in people-powered independent media, please support our critical Winter campaign now and help us fight—with truths—against the lies that would smother our democracy. Please help keep Common Dreams alive and growing.