UNDP, China Lay Plans for Expanded Partnership

28 Nov 2009

Beijing – United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) Administrator Helen Clark, accompanied by Senior UNDP Officials, completed her three-day China visit today in which she met with state leaders and senior government officials to lay the groundwork for a new era of cooperation with China. This new strategic partnership could facilitate the sharing of China’s development experiences with lesser developed countries. The trip commemorated the 30th anniversary of UNDP’s very successful cooperation with the Government of China.

Participants gather at South-South conference                                      in ChinaMiss Clark’s meeting with Premier Wen Jiabao took stock of UNDP’s work with China over the past three decades. They discussed lifting the long-time development relationship to a new level of a strategic partnership in which China and UNDP could work together to carry out trilateral development cooperation for the benefit of other countries, particularly in Africa. China’s relevant experiences in poverty reduction, clean energy, green economy, and climate adaptation could constitute priority areas for such South-South partnership.

“China has lifted hundreds of millions of people out of poverty in the last twenty years, and will very likely meet all the Millennium Development Goals by 2015,” said Miss Clark. “We need to build on and expand the remarkable successes of China’s development experience and help overcome remaining social and economic disparities. UNDP also looks forward to working closely with China as it plays an ever more important part in sharing China’s experience to benefit global development,” she said.

Miss Clark also met with prominent women leaders, including Madame Chen Zhili, Vice Chairperson of the Standing Committee of the National People’s Congress and President of the All-China Women’s Federation. They discussed areas of work of the Women’s Federation which include promotion of micro-credit schemes for women, medical check-ups for rural women, and advocating for women in science and technology, and in top levels of decision-making. Miss Clark underscored that a much greater focus on gender is needed to help meet the Millennium Development Goals globally.

Two photo exhibitions were featured at a celebration of 30 years of UNDP in China. One showcased UNDP’s work in China over the past three decades, and the other presented China’s participation in the Greater Tumen Initiative on regional cooperation for Northeast Asia. Over the past 30 years, the Government of China and UNDP have carried out 900 joint initiatives with resources amounting to US $1 billion.

During the meeting with the Minister of Commerce, Mr. Chen Deming stressed a new strategic partnership between UNDP and China for trilateral cooperation to support developing countries, particularly in Africa. This partnership could focus on synergies in technical assistance, knowledge sharing, and other forms of collaboration such as improving basic service delivery capacities, adapting to and mitigating the impact of climate change, meeting the clean energy needs of Africa, and fostering small and medium sized enterprises as part of the overall agenda to achieve the MDGs.

Discussions with the Vice Minister of Foreign Affairs, He Yafei, centered on poverty reduction, the role of the UN and the G20, and the climate agenda in the lead-up to the Copenhagen climate change summit. The Vice Minister of Finance, Mr. Ding Xuedong, spoke with Miss Clark about building capacities of low income countries to access climate financing. Mr. Zhou Shengxian, Minister of Environmental Protection, expressed a readiness to work with UNDP in sharing with other countries available environmentally friendly technologies. The meeting also noted continued partnership with UNDP in further strengthening institutional capacities of the recently formed Ministry. Miss Clark emphasized that China’s recent announcement on cutting its carbon intensity and Premier Wen Jiabao’s participation in Copenhagen has put momentum into the climate talks.

Miss Clark took part in a high-level dialogue on China and the World, met with women leaders and visited selected UNDP project sites. One of these was the Migrant Workers Legal Aid Station in Beijing. To date, the project has provided free legal aid service to 370,000 migrant workers in 15 provinces in China.

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