To help five LDCs in Asia and the Pacific enhance their ability to achieve structural economic and social progress, and to use the milestone of graduation from LDC status as an opportunity to find new avenues for international support to their further development efforts.
The economies of graduating LDCs, while demonstrating forms of structural economic progress, often remain little diversified and dependent on a small number of products or commodities for export. The transformation these countries aim to achieve or pursue implies a range of structural economic changes, notably from lower to higher levels of productivity and value addition. Most graduating countries with an agenda for such progress will need post-LDC support measures, possibly new forms of special treatment after LDC status.
The context of reclassification from LDC status is an opportunity, for these countries, to step up their plea for alternative support measures after graduation, with a view to maintaining their momentum of progress. In short, making the most of LDC benefits while these are still available, then achieving a smooth transition to post-LDC status with some alternative support measures is a broad agenda of these States, an agenda they expect UNDESA and UNCTAD to help them bring to fruition. The project offers the two organizations and the five recipients a practical framework for achieving this goal.
Key stakeholders under the project are government officials in the ministries associated with LDC graduation and its implications: Foreign Affairs, Planning, Finance, Trade and Commerce.
The project will enhance the capacities of selected officials within these ministries to: (i) better understand the implications of graduation from LDC status; (ii) incorporate policies aimed at mitigating vulnerability and building resilience into planning documents; (iii) formulate and enact smooth transition strategies; and (iv) keep up with changing international trade requirements.
Preparation of three vulnerability profiles and three ex-ante impact assessments for the benefit of Bangladesh, Lao PDR and Myanmar.
Preparation of two smooth transition strategies for the benefit of Bhutan and Vanuatu.
Strengthened capacity, among government officials in recipient countries, to mainstream resilience-building, and smooth transition strategies into national policy-making.
Improved capacity, in LDCs, to access and share information about new product requirements in export markets, and utilize the information to promote exports.
Building productive capacities critical for least developed countries
COVID-19 has heightened the need to boost productive capacities for socioeconomic recovery in the world’s poorest nations.
Foreign investment flows to structurally weak economies remain fragile in 2020
Foreign direct investment remains stable in least developed countries, but contracts severely in landlocked developing nations and small island developing states.
EU renews support for UNCTAD’s work on productive capacities in Angola
The European Union has approved additional funds for a project supporting the African nation’s quest to diversify exports and reduce its dependency on oil for economic growth.
Building productive capacities can avert a lost decade in the poorest countries
By Perks Master Ligoya, Ambassador of Malawi, and Paul Akiwumi, Director for Africa and Least Developed Countries, UNCTAD
Vanuatu graduates from least developed country status
Despite setbacks due to repeated natural disasters, the island nation has enjoyed steady economic growth since the mid-2000s.
Improve productive capacities in the world’s poorest countries for stronger recovery, UNCTAD says
The COVID-19 economic crisis is forecast to reverse years of painstaking development progress in education and nutrition, and to pull 32 million people back into extreme poverty.
Boosting incomes and reducing vulnerabilities of maize farmers in Laos
A recent UNCTAD study identifies three ways smallholder farmers in the landlocked southeast Asian nation can boost earnings from their harvests.
COVID-19 and beyond: What role for LDCs?
By Paul Akiwumi, Director for Africa and Least Developed Countries, UNCTAD
Betting on the untapped potential of Angolan honey
The government sees honey as a product that could help diversify the country’s oil-dependent economy and is working with UNCTAD and the European Union to improve production and boost exports.
PartnersUNCTAD and DESA, in cooperation with UNDP, ECA and ESCAP
DonorsUnited Nations Development Account
Bangladesh, Bhutan, Lao PDR, Myanmar and Vanuatu