ECLAC Notes Social Gaps before Meeting in Cuba

Santiago, Chile, May 7 (Prensa Latina) The Economic Commission for Latin America and the Caribbean (ECLAC) noted that the social gaps and backwardness affecting the countries of the region have a negative impact.

In a study entitled ‘The Inefficiency of Inequality’, ECLAC referred to the damage caused by those phenomena on productivity, supervision, environmental sustainability and the greater or lesser penetration of the society of knowledge.

Part of the study was made public at the organization’s headquarters in Santiago, on the eve of the 37th Session of that United Nations agency that will open today at Havana’s Convention Center, until May 11.

The meeting will be inaugurated on Tuesday by UN Secretary General Antonio Guterres, with speeches by ECLAC Executive Secretary Alicia Bárcena and Mexican Foreign Minister Luis Videgaray.

The study, which is an essential part of the debates in Havana, stressed that the policies in favor of equality not only have positive effects on people’s wellbeing.

They also contribute to generating an economic system that is more favorable to learning, innovation, increased productivity and environmental protection, ECLAC noted in the study.

The UN agency insisted on the need to move towards a new style of development that will allow achieving a virtuous circle among growth, equality and sustainability for the present and future generations, without leaving anyone behind.

‘Since 2010, ECLAC has considered equality as a fundamental value and an ethical principle based on an approach on rights, placing it in the center of development, in tune with the growing relevance of the issue in citizens’ demands and the debate on policies,’ the study pointed out. On the other hand, it reaffirmed that the region needs to bet on a great environmental impulse as a strategic axis of the industrial and technological policy, the creation of goods and public services, and the transition to less segregated territories and cities.

ECLAC also highlighted the progress towards digital economy and the change in the energy matrix.

‘Political economics in highly unequal societies and the culture of privilege are obstacles to advance towards development with equality,’ the study added.

In that regard, it said that the region has inherited the colonial vestiges of a culture of privilege that naturalizes social hierarchies and the huge asymmetries of access to the fruits of progress, political deliberation and productive assets.

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