Statement by Norway
Thank you, Madam President,
First of all, Norway wishes to thank the panellists for their valuable contributions.
The Declaration on the Right to Development offers hope to the millions of people around the world who live in abject poverty. Indeed, the aspiration to make the right to development a reality for all is the foundation for the quest to achieve the Millennium Development Goals.
For Norway it is important that the right to development is strongly linked to a development path in which governments are obliged to ensure that human rights are progressively realised. When development is seen as a human right, it obligates the authorities to fulfil their duties to respect and protect this right.
The adoption of redistributive, pro-poor policies follows from this obligation. We call on developing countries to mobilise more of their domestic resources, by broadening the tax base, by fighting corruption and by increasing transparency and improving accountability.
The effective implementation of the right to development requires meaningful global partnerships for development as well as human rights-based policy coherence and coordination at all levels.
Although the world’s rich and poor are becoming increasingly intertwined in a complex global economy, the wealth remains unevenly distributed. In line with the Declaration on the Right to Development, Norwegian policy is designed to challenge the unequal distribution of power within and between countries, as well as the conditions that underpin injustice, oppression and discrimination.
More than one per cent of Norway’s gross national income is allocated to developing assistance. And Norway is committed to retaining this level. We encourage other countries to follow our example in this respect. Many have the capacity to do so, even in these difficult economic times.
In closing we would like to honour the memory of late professor Arjun Kumar Sengupta, who served as the chair of the working group on the right to development, and welcome the ambassador of Sri Lanka as the new chairperson of the Working Group.
We look forward to the Working Group’s meeting in November and would like to underline the importance of building on the excellent work done by the high level task force. On the basis of their recommendations we hope we will be able to identify areas where the right to development can complement other human rights and development instruments and become more operational.