COVID-19: ECLAC Countries Call For Unprecedented Cooperation

Representatives of ECLAC countries at the thirty-fifth session of the Commission’s Committee of the Whole
Representatives of ECLAC countries at the thirty-fifth session of the Commission’s Committee of the Whole | Photo: Twitter/ @eclac_un

Representatives of Latin American and Caribbean countries urged for a paradigm shift in international financing for immediate responses to the effects of COVID-19.

August 4 (teleSUR) Representatives of the Economic Commission for Latin America and the Caribbean (ECLAC) member countries met on Tuesday at the thirty-fifth session of the Commission’s Committee of the Whole, in which Costa Rica received from Cuba the regional organization’s Presidency Pro Tempore for the next two years.

During the virtual meeting, the participants urged for a paradigm shift in international financing that would allow immediate responses to the effects of the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic and for sustainable development to be achieved in the region.

The Minister of Foreign Trade and Foreign Investment of Cuba, Rodrigo Malmierca, and ECLAC’s Executive Secretary, Alicia Bárcena, co-chaired the meeting in which Malmierca gave an account of the activities led by the Caribbean island in the last two years.

He highlighted his country’s commitment to a renewed multilateralism as for facing the challenges for the implementation of the 2030 Agenda, especially in the new scenario of international economic crisis derived from the Covid-19 pandemic.

“The central value of our presidency was to further, through frank and open dialogue, the goals of putting an end to poverty and achieving zero hunger, where each person would have access to universal health services and each child would have access to an education system that contributes to closing the profound existing gaps that entrench inequality and foster a culture of privilege,” Rodrigo Malmierca stated.

On her side, Alicia Bárcena stressed the importance of collective cooperation more than ever and the role of International Financial Institutions for the region’s post-COVID-19 recovery.

She also emphasized that promoting equality is critical for controlling the pandemic and ensuring a sustainable and green economic recovery. She underscored that to build back better; comprehensive fiscal policies will be needed, maintaining fiscal stimulus and avoiding austerity measures.

More progressive and efficient taxation systems are also needed to eliminate evasion along with new fiscal and social compacts, she expressed.

The senior United Nations official highlighted the role of Cuba as Chair of ECLAC and welcomed Costa Rica, which will organize the thirty-eighth session of ECLAC, scheduled to take place on October 26-28, 2020, via virtual means.

Meanwhile, the Minister of Foreign Affairs and Worship of Costa Rica, Rodolfo Solano, in his country’s capacity as the new Chair of ECLAC, emphasized that given the magnitude of the pandemic’s effects in the region, “only by working together will we be able to ensure better results, leaving no one behind.”

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