Ms. Yuefen Li, Head of the Debt and Development Finance Branch of UNCTAD, made a presentation on the economic rationale of the Principles and emphasized that the objectives of the Principles mirror an important part of COSEFIN’s mandate.
She recalled the transparent and inclusive multi-stakeholder process in the development of the Principles and the increasing support given to the Principles by Member States of the United Nations, civil society and academic circles.
She also highlighted that UN General Assembly resolutions and the outcome of UNCTAD XIII encouraged UNCTAD to keep working on the initiative and promoting international consensus around the Principles.
Participants at the COSEFIN session included Mr. Edgar Ayanes, Minister of Finance of Costa Rica; Mr. Carlos Caceres, Minister of Finance of El Salvador; Mr. Daniel Toribio, Minister of Finance of Dominican Republic; Mr. Jose Dorval Carias; Minister of Public Finance of Guatemala; Mr. Hector Guillen Gomez, Minister of Finance of Honduras; Mr. Ivan Acosta Montalvan, Minister of Finance and Public Credit of Nicaragua; and Mr. Dario Espinosa, General Director of Public Credit of Panama.
The current President of COSEFIN, Minister Hector Guillen Gomez of Honduras, stated that the UNCTAD Principles are important in light of the increasing public debt burden of some countries in the region. For this reason, the Principles would contribute to fostering economic development of the region, he said.
While announcing Honduras’s support to the Principles, he invited other countries of the region to do likewise. On behalf of COSEFIN, he thanked the United Nations for inviting COSEFIN to be part of the process and hoped to closely work together in the endorsement and implementation process of the Principles in the region.
The COSEFIN session was held back to back with the eleventh Regional Conference for the countries of Central America, Panama and the Dominican Republic (CAPDR) organized by the International Monetary Fund (IMF).
The Central Bank of the Dominican Republic, as the hosting organization, stated in a press release that financial institutions in the region continue to face the effects of the slow economic recovery in the United States, the precarious situation of the financial markets, and the debt crisis in Europe.
Under the current international economic situation, characterized by moderate growth in the global economy, high prices of oil and persistent risk in global financial markets, the regional conference was therefore important for considering the linkage of these issues with fiscal adjustment and macro-financial stability, it said.
The COSEFIN is a permanent forum of Ministers of Finance of Central America, Panama and the Dominican Republic, which meets regularly to discuss issues associated with harmonization, alignment, development and coordination of fiscal policies. The COSEFIN first met on 28 June 2006 in the city of Antigua, Guatemala, under the purview of the provisions of the Central American Integration System - SICA.