New York, 23 March 2022 – The United Nations Office for South-South Cooperation (UNOSSC), in partnership with the Pan American Health Organization (PAHO), the United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF) and the United Nations Population Fund (UNFPA), launched the publication “Good Practices in South-South and Triangular Cooperation: Delivering on the Sustainable Development Goal on Good Health and Well-being” as one in a series of Global South-South Development (GSSD) Expo pre-launch activities.
Part of UNOSSC’s Good Practices flagship publication series, the new volume compiles around 40 good practices on the role and potential of South-South and triangular cooperation in delivering on SDG 3. The launch of the publication was marked by the screening of a short animated video, followed by presentations of good practices from the publication by country representatives from Argentina, Bosnia & Herzegovina and Nigeria, who shared their success stories and experiences with the participants.
The new thematic volume supports and promotes South-South and triangular cooperation (SSC & TrC) through country-to-country learning with regard to Sustainable Development Goal 3 (Good Health and Well-being). It focuses on primary health care (PHC); reproductive, maternal, newborn, and child health (RMNCH); the elimination of mother-to-child transmission of HIV & Syphilis (EMTCT); and the overarching framework of Universal Health Coverage (UHC) and strengthening of health systems. It.
Despite the unprecedented health crisis resulting from COVID-19, countries from the global South have continued to make progress and produce innovative solutions and home-grown good practices towards the achievement of SDG3, said Mr. Andrés Franco, Deputy Director for the Multilateral Partnerships, Public Partnerships Division at UNICEF. He also emphasized that this publication provides evidence of the existing capacity and resilience of communities as well as their commitment to the achievement of the 2030 Agenda. He highlighted successful experiences from China, Africa and Thailand and how South-South cooperation is supporting exchanges of knowledge and successful experiences in PHC and RMNCH.
”“With our specific focus on child rights and well-being of children, UNICEF will respond and is responding. to the call of the Secretary-General and UN Member States to do more to support South-South cooperation, and we are committed to support the implementation of the UN System Wide Strategy on South-South and Triangular Cooperation”, said Mr. Andrés Franco.
Mr. Bobby Olarte, the Senior Adviser for Inter-country Cooperation at UNFPA, thanked the panelists and the participants for their participation and spoke of the contribution of South-South and triangular cooperation toward the achievement of SDG3. Mr. Olarte highlighted that UNFPA has responded to calls from UN member states to strengthen and leverage SSC & TrC for the implementation of the SDGs. He added that UNFPA recognizes the power of SSC & TrC in bringing effective development solutions that are well-contextualized in the global South, and cost-effective in their implementation. UNFPA, therefore, is mainstreaming SSC & TrC in their country’s regional and global programming, raising the capacity of the organization in facilitating SSC & TrC and monitoring closely the investments and results of its programme implementation.
”“Together, we should work to mobilize the immense resources, knowledge and ingenuity of the countries of the global South for the benefit of all,” said Mr. Bobby Olarte.
Mr. Godfrey Xuereb, Head of the Office of Country and Subregional Coordination at PAHO/WHO also welcomed the participants and thanked the organizers. He highlighted that, although the COVID-19 challenges continue to be daunting, PAHO has made great efforts to overcome the situation and defeat this pandemic, together with the commitment of the Member States. PAHO/WHO technical cooperation has contributed to increasing the vaccine rollout in all countries of the Americas. This has resulted in more than 1.7 billion doses of the COVID-19 vaccines being administered in Latin America and the Caribbean, with 679 million people have completed their vaccination series.
”“South-South cooperation plays an even more important role in the post COVID-19 world: to help reduce inequities and strengthen governance. Over the past decade, strong political backing from Member States has pushed South-South and triangular cooperation to the center stage of development as an important mechanism for the achievement of the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development,” said Mr. Godfrey Xuereb.
Mr. Xuereb further highlighted that PAHO/WHO has promoted and facilitated cooperation among countries and horizontal partnerships and has been actively advocating to tackle critical issues in an attempt to ensure that these efforts reach and benefit the most vulnerable populations. He also highlighted impactful examples of SSC, such as an initiative between Peru and Bolivia, where access to oxygen for COVID-19 patients was improved through benchmarking and experience-sharing between the countries; and how Argentina has shared its laboratory capacity in the field of anti-microbial resistance with countries of the Caribbean.
In her closing remarks, Ms. Xiaojun Grace Wang, Deputy Director at UNOSSC, highlighted that health has been an essential element and foundation of all efforts towards achieving the SDGs.
”“The COVID-19 pandemic has put a test on the resilience of our health systems, scientific research, and public health management. It rings an alarming call for even more elevated support to health system building and enhanced global cooperation among countries, to address common challenges,” said Ms. Xiaojun Grace Wang, Deputy Director at UNOSSC.
Reflecting on the good practices shared during the event, Ms. Wang highlighted that SSC has a variety of modalities and is open to all partners – Regional and subregional mechanisms play a key role; digital platforms can help take South-South knowledge, exchange of expertise, and capacity building programmes up to a scale that would benefit more countries and people; and SSC can help health partners to set standards collectively that benefit from ingenuity, and diverse knowledge from the developing countries.
Ms. Wang concluded the event by reiterating the need for all partners to continue sharing knowledge, including through the UN system-wide knowledge sharing and partnership brokering platform, South-South Galaxy.