Scaling-up South-South Cooperation for Sustainable Development

2017-05-16, by Xiaojun Grace Wang, Shams Banihani, from United Nations Development Programme (UNDP)

Executive Summary:

South-South and triangular cooperation has emerged as an important vehicle to accelerate human development and it is set to assume greater importance in the future. This paper intends to provide a framework of better understanding South-South cooperation and its role in supporting the implementation of the sustainable development agenda. South-South cooperation contributes to liberating and strengthening productive capacity, bringing back the necessary focus on basic infrastructure for development, lowering the costs of skills and technology transfer, sharing more relevant and adaptable public policies for developing countries, enabling countries to develop joint solutions to common development challenge, and facilitating common agenda setting and joint advocacy. Despite all the success South-South cooperation has achieved, five major and inter-connected bottlenecks are hindering the full potential of South-South and Triangular cooperation at present, including complexity, asymmetry, externalities, scale and sustainability. Such bottlenecks can be addressed through changing the mind-set, adopting systematic approaches, maximizing the development benefit from various modalities, and developing capacity of both state and non-state actors to achieve truly equal partnerships.

This article was originally the conference paper for Silk Road Forum 2015 and has been granted authorization to use by UNDP.

Executive summary is based on the article. Copyright © UNDP. All rights reserved.