On June 1, 2018, Mr. Jorge Chediek, Envoy of United Nations Secretary-General on South-South Cooperation and Director of United Nations Office for South-South Cooperation (UNOSSC), visited Langrun Garden of Peking University to speak on "South-South Cooperation and the United Nations", and signed on behalf of UNOSSC a Memorandum of Understanding with Institute of South-South Cooperation and Development (ISSCAD) at Peking University.
Present at the event were Prof. Justin Yifu Lin, Dean of ISSCAD, Dean of the Institute of New Structural Economics (INSE), and Honorary Dean of National School of Development, Prof. Yao Yang, Executive Dean of ISSCAD, and Dean of National School of Development, Prof. Fu Jun, Academic Dean of ISSCAD, Ms. Eliza Liu, Administrative Director of ISSCAD, Ms. Grace Xiaojun Wang, UNOSSC Deputy Director for Programmes and Operations, and Ms. Dingding Sun, UNOSSC Programme Coordination Specialist.
According to Prof. Yao Yang who moderated the lecture, Mr. Jorge Chediek has been Director of the UNOSSC leading the promotion and coordination of South-South Cooperation since October 2015. In March 2016, Mr. Chediek was appointed by the United Nations Secretary-General as his Envoy on South-South Cooperation.
Prof. Yao Yang, Executive Dean of ISSCAD, and Dean of National School of Development
Mr. Chediek first reviewed the landmark events and the efforts of the UN in the past development of and in advancing South-South Cooperation. From his perspective, the experience of Western developed countries may not apply to Southern developing countries whose development is still at a lower level. However, the similarity of problems faced by Southern countries leaves room for them to share solutions with each other to boost economic growth. ISSCAD offers an excellent platform for Southern countries to learn from China's experience in reform and opening up. In the future, South-South Cooperation will be enhanced and furthered. The Second UN High-Level Conference on South-South Cooperation to be held in Argentina in March 2019 will draw voices from the people of developing countries to better its strategies for promoting South-South Cooperation and Development.
Mr. Jorge Chediek, Envoy of United Nations Secretary-General on South-South Cooperation and Director of United Nations Office for South-South Cooperation
Prof. Justin Yifu Lin commended Mr. Chediek for his illuminating lecture and the UN's role in economic development of the South. At the UN High-Level Roundtable on South-South Cooperation on September 26, 2015, President Xi Jinping announced the establishment of Institute of South-South Cooperationand Development and thus started a new chapter of China's effort in South-South Cooperation. A crucial mission of the UN is to help developing countries achieve inclusive and sustainable economic development, which is of vital importance to countries of the South.
Prof. Justin Yifu Lin, Dean of ISSCAD, Dean of the Institute of New Structural Economics (INSE), and Honorary Dean of National School of Development
However, even though international organizations have provided substantial aid to developing countries after World War II, the outcome is unsatisfactory, with poverty and various social problems remaining. Economic transformation and development cannot be achieved without transformation of ideas, whose value has been well proved by the epoch-making changes of China that came along with the reform and opening up. Now that existing theories of developed countries hardly dovetail with the various situations of developing countries, those from developing countries provide common inspirations for their counterparts. This is what ISSCAD envisaged when it was established: to achieve joint prosperity of countries of the South by sharing China's experiences.
Prof. Fu Jun pointed out that ISSCAD, on the one hand, opens advanced courses for students to master the relevant theories of national development, and, on the other hand, arranges field trips for better understanding of the respective roles of both government and market in national development. In the past two years, students of ISSCAD had seen the fruits of the take-off of China's special economic zones and the transformation of its labor-intensive industry, and felt the vitality of China's high-tech enterprises including Huawei and Tencent. In the future, ISSCAD will continue to orient students to topics related to UN's Sustainable Development Goals such as climate change and population growth and health and place the economic growth of their own countries in a bigger framework of development.
Prof. Fu Jun, Academic Dean of ISSCAD
“Seeking truth from facts”. ISSCAD students in front of Deng Xiaoping's portrait
ISSCAD students experiencing BYD skyrail
ISSCAD students visiting a toy factory
Prof. Yao Yang highlighted that students of ISSCAD will soon head for Shanghai, Hangzhou and other cities in the Yangtze River Delta, one of the liveliest and most prosperous regions of China, to acquire first-hand experience of China's economic growth. He hoped that China's development mode could inspire fellow countries in the South and looked forward to UN's prominent role in this respect.
After the lecture, Prof. Justin Yifu Lin, on behalf of ISSCAD, and Mr. Chediek, on behalf of UNOSSC, signed a Memorandum of Understanding at the Conference Room of Zhifuxuan. Both parties agreed to cooperate in the following areas of activity:
Article by Alice Zhang
The United Nations Office for South-South Cooperation (UNOSSC), hosted by UNDP since 1974, was established by the UN General Assembly with a mandate to advocate and coordinate efforts relevant with South-South Cooperation on a global and UN system-wide basis. UNOSSC receives policy directives and guidance from the General Assembly and through its subsidiary body, the High-level Committee on South-South Cooperation. Platforms UNOSSC hosts and holds include South-South Cooperation Global Thinkers, Global South-South Development Expo, etc. Learn more about UNOSSC at www.unsouthsouth.org.