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Saturday, February 20, 2010

Special Report by Timothy Bayl on the 6th session of the High-Level Task Force on the Implementation of the Right to Development, 14 - 22 January, Palais des Nations, Geneva.

The High-Level Task Force on the Implementation of the Right to Development recently completed its 6th session at the Palais des Nations in Geneva, focusing on refining the right to development criteria in relation to Millennium Development Goal 8, in particular on access to essential medicines, technology transfer and debt relief. The mandated objective of the task force is to provide expertise to the Working Group on the Right to Development so that it may make appropriate recommendations to various actors on issues significant for the implementation of the right to development. In addition to its institutional members - the World Bank, IMF, WTO, UNDP, UNCTAD and UNESCO, the institutions responsible for relevant global partnerships were also invited to the meeting.
In opening the session, the Task Force highlighted the need for the Right to Development to be mainstreamed in policy at local, national, regional and international levels, an intention reiterated by many Member States. The session continued with reports and presentations from the number of consultations made with the range of programme partners such as WHO, The Global Fund, WIPO, UNFCCC, The World Bank, IMF as well as the Center for International Environment Law (CIEL). More information and documentation is available on webpage of the Task Force's 6th Session.
The meeting was also presented with a consultant report on right to development criteria (which can be accessed here) and the corresponding operational sub-criteria authored by a Human Rights and Development academic and a Development Economics academic, which led to some participants of the meeting to comment on the problematic issue of how to measure the implementation of the Right to Development.
Following each presentation and report, there was an encouraging amount of dialogue between the Task Force, its institutional members and observers and the representative or expert presenting their findings. The Task Force had five days of the seven-day meeting scheduled for drafting their findings and recommendations. The outcome of this 6th session will be submitted to the Intergovernmental Working Group on the Right to Development for consideration at its next session in early April 2010.


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