Free mobility of labour on agenda of Unctad XIII
DOHA THE United Nations Conference on Trade and Investment (Unctad) XIII, to be inaugurated by its Chairman the Emir His Highness Sheikh Hamad bin Khalifa al Thani on Saturday, will discuss, among other issues, whether the global labour flow should be as free as capital.
Unctad Secretary-General’s Inter-regional Advisor Kobsak Chutikul told Qatar Tribune on Thursday, “Developed countries support free flow of capital but have reservations on free flow of labour, an equally important pillar of development.
Therefore, the issue would be discussed threadbare in the Doha session.” “Also, in case of a developmental crisis, these countries try to pass the buck to the World Trade Organisation and the International Monetary Fund. So, the issue of finance-led, market-based versus sustainable development will be discussed”, he said.
Congratulating Qatar for initiating a philosophical and ideological debate on the two models of development at Unctad, Chutikul said, “By bringing together stakeholders in development including governments, civil societies, service providers as well as trade and finance bodies, Qatar has made clear that the conference seeks to have a healthy, open-minded discussion on all issues related to development right from finance and market to environment, unemployment, education and poverty.” Qatar, despite being the country with highest per capita income in the world, has emerged as the voice of the underprivileged and the developing world in the recent times, he added.
“Times are changing.
Countries like Brazil, Russia, India, China and South Africa (BRICS) are emerging as big powers. Today the Gulf countries and BRICS share among them 60-70 per cent of the world’s production. So, who gets to set the rules of the game now becomes a vital question”, he said.
Her Highness Sheikha Moza will also grace the opening ceremony, which would be marked by a scintillating show by Inana, a cultural troupe from Damascus, he said when asked.
“The 60-strong troupe aided by 20 local performers and 23 children will stage a ballet highlighting the past and present of the Arab world.
It will also essay an optimistic peep into the prospects of the region”, he said.
Chief of Intergovernmental Support Service and Secretary of Unctad XIII Masoumeh Sahami said climate change, food security and women’s rights would also be on the agenda.
Between 2,500 to 3,000 participants, including figures like Tunisian President Moncef Marzouki, Niger President Mahamadou Issoufou, Turkish Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan and Bangladesh’s Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina will be present at the meet, she added.