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Kenya committed to Monterrey Consensus

NAIROBI, November 29 – President Mwai Kibaki has reassured the international community that Kenya remains dedicated to the commitments of the Monterrey Consensus.

Speaking in Doha, Qatar at the official opening of the International Conference on Financing for Development, the President intimated that Kenya had developed the Vision 2030, which is aimed at transforming the nation into a newly industrialised, middle income economy.

President Kibaki explained that the Vision was extremely expensive and said his government was exploring innovative ways of mobilising resources. He welcomed support from development partners in order to realise success.

“While significant steps have been taken on debt relief much more needs to be done. Kenya, like other developing countries, can only be on a sustained growth path if increased development assistance and debt relief, supplement our efforts,” he said.

President Kibaki reminded delegates that at the last meeting in Monterrey Mexico in 2002, both the developed and developing countries agreed to forge a new partnership for development.

“In the Consensus that was reached, developing countries took primary responsibility for their development through the mobilisation and appropriate utilisation of domestic resources. On the other hand, developed countries pledged to promote an international environment conducive for the development of poor nations and to increase Official Development Assistance to enable them achieve the Millennium Development Goals, among other things,” said President Kibaki.

However, the Head of State said some regions, particularly in sub-Saharan Africa, are clearly not on track and expectations under the Monterrey Consensus have not been met.

“Moreover, the commitment to increase Official Development Assistance has not been achieved as expected.  While levels of ODA, including new commitments, rose after 2002, they fell beginning 2006.  Indeed, the sustained increases in aid required to meet targets agreed at Monterrey have not materialised.”

The President further added that the commitment to create an international environment conducive to the growth of developing countries has remained elusive following the collapse of the Doha World Trade Organization negotiations.

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The President noted that in recent times, the situation in most developing countries had been worsened by the challenges of climate change, high costs of food and energy as well as the current global financial crisis. 

“These dynamics, and the overall situation in most developing countries, underline the need for a review of the Monterrey Consensus and the strengthening of the international partnership on development.”

The four-day Doha conference has been touted by UN Secretary General Ban Ki Moon as ‘a vital opportunity to plan a globally coordinated response to the financial crisis to ensure the well-being of millions worldwide and especially the poor’.
 
Mr Ban told a news conference in the Qatari capital on the eve of the Review Conference that such a response can protect developing countries, underpin a drive to a green economy, and stimulate a commitment to a renewed multilateralism on Financing for Development.

The meeting will focus on ensuring sufficient financing to meet key development goals amid mounting concern about the impact of the current global economic slowdown on poor nations.

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