Jan Kregel of the UN Department of Economic and Social Affairs, explained that the idea of national development strategies was to move away from the “simple poverty reduction focus of the MDGs” towards embracing the full range of UN “core issues” such as gender, environment and social development. Poverty reduction strategy papers should similarly take into consideration this broader range of issues. Countries have been given a deadline of end 2006 to prepare these strategies.
Rick Rowden of ActionAid International USA said that under current fiscal and monetary targets, countries would be unable to meet MDGs or even spend additional resources received from increases in overseas development assistance. Rowden said that the three year nature of the Fund’s poverty reduction and growth facility proscribed embarking on longer-term national development strategies, citing Mozambique as an example.
Vinay Bhargava of the World Bank said that the Bank was helping countries to create both realistic scenarios and “scaling-up scenarios”, and that they would help countries in their dialogues with donors to achieve the latter.