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Katyna Argueta, Resident Representative of the United Nations Development Programme in Brazil. (CMC photo)
Katyna Argueta, Resident Representative of the United Nations Development Programme in Brazil. (CMC photo)

By Kenton X. Chance

FORTALEZA, Brazil (CMC) — Despite being a middle-income region, Latin American and the Caribbean (LAC) is not a middle-income society.

But a senior United Nations official believes that this situation can change.

Addressing the 2019 America Regional Conference on Green Economy, Katyna Argueta, Resident Representative of the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) in Brazil, said Latin American and the Caribbean is a region that faces important challenges.

Katyna Argueta, Resident Representative of the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP)

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“We must remember that in many countries basic needs of a significant part of the population have not been fulfilled,” Argueta said.

“Latin America and the Caribbean is a middle-income region but it is not a middle-class society region. So how can we reach middle class society and achieve a more sustainable pathway,” she said, adding that this sustainable pathway is a three-lane road.

“Countries must enhance productivity, inclusion and resilience. We must work at having these three lanes, mindful that it requires effective governance as a precondition,” the UNDP representative explained.

UN Environment says that a green economy is defined as low carbon, resource efficient and socially inclusive.

In a green economy, growth in employment and income are driven by public and private investment into such economy activities, infrastructure and assets that allow reduced carbon emissions and pollution, enhance energy and resource efficiency, and prevention of the loss of biodiversity and ecosystem service.

Argueta said there are many factors that explain poor income, including low quality of education, low-capacity local government, poor service delivery, and the degradation of national sources.

She said that those factors are always related to ineffective governance, adding that green economy has the potential to foster productivity, enhance social inclusion, and improve human welfare as well as enhance systemic resilience with its full potential can only be achieved by means of enabling policy environment”.

She said the 2030 United Nations Sustainable Development Agenda is an inspirational line of sight

“Thus, transition to a green economy model must fully in line with the achievement to the SDG. Therefore, must be thought for the benefit of all,” she said.

Arqueta, quoting UN Secretary General, Antonio Guterres, said, “We all know that the green economy is the future.  Then we must make sure that everyone benefits and no one is left behind.”

Argueta said the conference, which ends later on Tuesday, is an opportunity for networking, exchanging best practices and lessons learned as well as identify a pathway for advancing a green economy agenda in the region.

The conference is organised in collaboration with the United Nations Office for South-South Cooperation (UNOSSC), World Green Economy Organization (WGEO), International Solar Alliance, and the United Nations Framework Convention of Climate Change.

Conference organisers say a clear priority for many developed and developing economies is the need for innovation, productivity, and secure jobs.

They say that while different stakeholders might have varying needs, there is an overall need for higher productivity and efficiency, stronger resilience and innovation.

Green economy offers vast opportunities in eradicating poverty as well as sustaining economic growth, which is of particular concern for the countries in the Global South, as well as enhancing social inclusion, improving human welfare, creating opportunities for employment and decent work for all, while maintaining the healthy functioning of the Earth’s ecosystems, organisers say.

“In order to drive sustained, inclusive and equitable economic growth and job creation, particularly for women, youth and the poor, it is important that implementation of green economy policies would adopt a holistic approach, by linking financing, technology, capacity development and other elements of the enabling environment for the green economy.”

The conference includes as ministerial panel discussion on enabling policy and regulatory frameworks for a green economy, a solutions forum on scaling up green innovative technologies, and a discussion on funding the sustainable development agenda through green finance: challenges and opportunities.

It will be followed on Wednesday by the WGEO Executive Training Course on Green Economy. 

This course aims to equip the participants with the sound understanding of the key principles, dimensions, and trends in the process of transition to a green economy at national, regional and global levels, as well as provides the tools and methods for proactive green action in the context of the implementation of the United Nations 2030 Agenda Sustainable Development Agenda.

The course is targeted at executives and decision makers representing national government institutions, international organizations, private sector, as well as civil society organizations, including mass media. The course is designed to provide executives and decision makers with an opportunity to re-acquaint or familiarize themselves with core principles, dimensions, trends, tools, and methodologies in scaling up the transition to a green economy model.

One reply on “Green economy can transform LAC region into ‘middle-income society’”


    The United Nations Organization has NEVER been able to CREATE WEALTH.
    In modern times, indeed in the past 200 years, the North Western europeans generally, and the Anglo-Saxon nations have experienced fantastic levels of wealth and prosperity. They were NOT that smart to have solved that issue of riches, wealth and prosperity for all mankind. They really didn’t create this wealth they apparently bumbled into, almost accidentally, and so are no more wiser in directing the rest of the globe in achieving such high levels of prosperity that they were the beneficiaries of.
    I posit that the so-called ‘wild’ areas that they ventured into, such as the North American continent, would NOT have developed to such heights of prosperity that they ‘achieved’. My consideration here is that the areas that escaped COLONIZATION did not fare better as a result. ON THE CONTRARY, the COLONIZED AREAS DID MUCH BETTER. Case in point: modern Ethiopia.
    Well into this century, the BRITISH WEST INDIES enjoyed greater prosperity and far higher wages, on the whole, than the Spanish language Latin American and Caribbean entities that gained their independence much earlier. Indeed, even within the West Indies, SAINT VINCENT AND THE GRENADINES initially was somewhat worse off than those BWI territories that had become BRITISH much earlier. Our great freedom fighter phenomenon: HAITI, did not benefit economically for its precedence.
    THESE ARE THINGS TO THINK SOBERLY UPON, rather than merely joining the sireen song of Communist-inspired false propaganda. This area of economic history has always been of great interest to me. Did the UNO suddenly discover the secret way to wealth, riches and prosperity? Many of the Colleges and Universities would like to know. I have continued life-long economic studies, searching into this very question. Mankind still hasn’t solved the problem, after six thousand years of experimenting and theorizing.
    The concepts of free enterprise, free market capitalist economies help more greatly in prolonging, extending and developing economic prosperity. Real wealth and prosperity has so far hidden their true source from human beings.
    SOCIALISM, COMMUNISM destroy wealth and prosperity in addition to countless human lives.
    This UN lady as little as you and me, so far as finally resolving the millenia-old phenomenon of wealth vs poverty. Sadly, when the blind elites and pretenders lead the blind, then we are all certain to end up in the politico-socio-economic ditch.
    The ordinary, common, working country folk in St.Vincent and the Grenadines used to cogently remark that the very WORST thing that could happen to communist, marxist-leninist, ‘scientific’ socialist advocate Ralph Everard Gonsalves, would be for him to actually gain power.
    The old folk of Vincyland were absolutely correct.
    Poor, spent, Communist Ralphie simply does NOT know the way to prosperity for SVG.
    The copy-cat ‘Comrade’ has presided over SVG’s biggest DECLINE economically, socially and materially.
    My fellow teachers, about two solid decades after the guerilla-style opportunist POLITICAL ROAD BLOCK, still haven’t seen that SALARY INCREASE we were striking about – – – the guy who incited us then to change to government, extra-constitutionally STILL HASN’T GIVEN US EVEN THE SEMBLENCE OF A SALARY INCREASE.
    He proclaimed that Arnhim EUSTACE’s percentage increase, later upped significantly, was NOT ACCEPTABLE!
    We would get MORE. Or, so we were told by the political deceiver.
    Right on, Pappy Josh! You had it exactly, precisely, ON THE MONEY.

    My PROOF?



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