Accra – Much of the media present at the launch of UNCTAD’s Least Developed Countries Report 2012 in Accra were very much interested in issues such as the relationship between diaspora and the global economic down turn, the mechanisms put in place by the UN to retain skilled personnel in their home country and what the UN is doing to ensure that the recommended policies in the report are implemented b LDCs.
The media seemed to agree to the report’s findings that there is high remittances from immigrants to their home countries and they were burnt on finding out how best these remittances can be harnessed by the LDCs.
According to the LDCs report 2012 remittances constitute a significant source of external financing for LDCs, and should be mobilized for expansion and diversification of productive capacities. However, remittances cannot be considered as a substitute for FDI, ODA, debt relief, domestic resource mobilization, or other sources of finance for development; nor should they be seen as a panacea for LDCs investment gap or economic problems.
The report thus argues that more systematic policy action is needed in order to enhance the contributions of diasporas to development of their home countries.
The launch in Accra was performed jointly by Ambassador Kwabena Baah-Duodu, a former Senior Advisor to UNCTAD’s Secretary-General and Chief of Cabinet, who presented an overview of the report, Ms. Dyane Epstein, Chief of Mission of the International Organization for Migration (IOM) and UNDP Country Director Mr. Kamil Kamaluddeen.
The report also brings attention to the role of educated and highly-qualified nationals living in the diaspora and the issue of brain drain.
Full version of the report is available at http://unctad.org/en/PublicationsLibrary/ldc2012_en.pdf