SANTIAGO, Chile, July 4, CMC — The United Nations Economic Commission for Latin American and the Caribbean (ECLAC) says planning for development in the region is back with “renewed strength and complex challenges”.
ECLAC Deputy Executive Secretary Antonio Prado, addressing the commemorative seminar to celebrate the 15th anniversary of the Latin American and Caribbean Institute for Economic and Social Planning (ILPES) said “closing the multiple gaps in the region takes a long-term vision, strategic planning and long-lasting persistence”.
ECLAC said it created ILPES in 1962 with the aim of supporting Latin American and Caribbean governments in the field of planning and public administration by providing training, consultancy and research services.
“The State must be capable of providing strategic management for the long run, looking ahead, and being involved in the design of strategies for guiding national development,” Prado urged.
In this context, the high-level official announced that during ECLAC’s 34th Session, to be held from August 27-31, in El Salvador, the document, “Structural Change for Equality” an integrated vision of development, will be presented.
It will elaborate on the concepts set forth in the document, “Time for Equality” specifically proposing to strengthen the role of the State.
Former ECLAC executive secretary, José Antonio Ocampo, told the seminar that the most successful period for Latin America and the Caribbean, from the economic development perspective, was from 1945 to 1980, when industrialization took place, as the region showed a Gross Domestic Product (GDP) annual growth of 5.5 per cent.
He, however, said the region has advanced in the last years in achieving a welfare state focused on assistance rather than universality, which is exactly what ECLAC has set as one of its current goals.
But the Colombia, New York, University professor in economics, warned that “a possible breakdown of the euro would trigger an unprecedented crisis” and called on regional countries to support regional integration and a more technology-based exports development, referring to the region’s relationship with China as “highly unbalanced”.