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Istanbul Programme of Action for the LDCs (2011–2020)

Monitoring Deliverables, Tracking Progress – Analytical Perspectives

image of Istanbul Programme of Action for the LDCs (2011–2020)

Ambitious in nature, the Istanbul Programme of Action (IPoA) for the Least Developed Countries (LDCs) adopted by the Fourth United Nations Conference on the LDCs (UN LDC IV) in 2011, sets out a development path for LDCs for the coming decade. Successful implementation of the IPoA requires identification of delivery tools for specific targets, provision of necessary financial and non-financial resources, and a strengthened monitoring mechanism. LDC IV Monitor, an independent partnership of eight interested organisations, aims to add value by enhancing transparency, accountability and efficiency of the official monitoring and review mechanism of the IPoA.

LDC IV Monitor’s first set of two reports, produced outside of the official intergovernmental process, provide credible, evidence-based and policy-oriented assessment of the delivery status of the promises contained in the IPoA. The Synthesis Report, derived from the critical analyses of the state of play concerning the IPoA, presents the broad messages and key recommendations. The volume on Analytical Perspectives addresses a wide spectrum of issues including articulation of a composite IPoA index, building of productive capacity, trade in goods and services, delivery of the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs), flows of different forms of development finance, and consequences of climate change. The publications seek to contribute towards crafting national and international policies to support graduation of the LDCs through structural transformation of their economies.

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Assessing the Prospects of Accelerated Graduation of the LDCs

This chapter provides the first systematic examination of the graduation trends and prospects after the Fourth United Nations Conference on the Least Developed Countries (UN LDC IV) and the adoption of the Istanbul Programme of Action (IPoA). A major statement of the IPoA is ‘the aim of enabling half the number of least developed countries to meet the criteria for graduation by 2020’. This goal has been referred to or reiterated in several official UN documents (UN Resolutions of December 2012). While considered at the time of the Istanbul Conference as moderately realistic, it has shown a change in international attitudes towards graduation. Graduation has been considered less as a threat for development of the graduating countries, and more as the signal that these countries were reaching a new phase of development. After Istanbul, the fear of graduation has been dampened by the General Assembly resolution on ‘Smooth transition’ adopted in December 2012 (and following the report of an ad hoc working group of the General Assembly on this topic).

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