India has slammed the advanced world for paying mere “lip service” to the needs of developing countries, while not doing much in reality to give them finances and transfer technology to help them pursue high growth while protecting the environment.
“Lot of lip service has been paid and is being paid by the developed countries to the idea that we are living in an increasingly inter-dependent world and that the developed countries have an obligation to help the developing countries. In practice, the overall situation on the ground, as I have pointed out in my speech at the Rio Conference, is not very flattering,”
Prime Minister Manmohan Singh told reporters on way back home after attending G 20 Summit in Mexico and the Earth Summit in Brazil.
The poor countries need more money, more capital to sustain high growth rates for their economies, Singh said, adding, “they also need increased flow of technologies on favourable terms to accelerate the process of their economic growth.”
Taking a dig at the developed countries, the prime minister said international gatherings are an essay in persuasion.
In the Rio+20 Summit, also called as the Earth Summit, the prime minister had said, “Many countries could do more (in terms of sustainable development), if additional finance and technology were available. Unfortunately, there is little evidence of support from the industrialised countries in these areas.”
The ongoing economic crisis, he had said, has made matters worse.
However, the Rio declaration does talk about old commitments of developed countries for funding and transferring technology to the emerging market economies and the poor countries to help them go green while pursuing developmental goals.
“We call for the fulfilment of all official development assistance commitments, including the commitments by many developed countries to achieve the target of 0.7 per cent of gross national product to developing countries by 2015, as well as a target of 0.15 to 0.20 per cent of gross national product to least developed countries,” the draft says. The draft also says donor countries should take all necessary and appropriate measures to raise the rate of aid disbursements to meet their existing commitments.
Manjit Singh Puri, India’s deputy permanent representative to the United Nations, told reporters there has been a great deal of efforts to dilute the Rio principles at the negotiating stage. “The idea was that you should perhaps walk away from them, or you should substitute it with the south-south cooperation. However, this conference has reaffirmed validity of Rio principles,” he said.
To get these paragraphs of old commitment of 0.7 per cent of GNP in negotiations was itself a great deal of task, he said. “These are reiterations to hold people on their old commitments.
It was itself a great deal of achievement on the part of developing countries,” Puri added.