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News > World

G77 + China, a Look Into the Past

  • The G77 + China Summit will be held in Havana on September 15 and 16. Sep. 13, 2023.

    The G77 + China Summit will be held in Havana on September 15 and 16. Sep. 13, 2023. | Photo: Twitter/@JorgeBetan5091

Published 13 September 2023

G77 + China is currently composed of 134 nations representing Latin America, Africa and South Asia. China joined in 1992 and participates and collaborates externally.

The Group begins to take shape, although still in a very incipient way, in December 1961, when the United Nations General Assembly passes a Resolution to constitute what was called the United Nations Decade for Development.

International Delegations Arrive in Havana for G77+China Summit

"That is when the UN Secretary General began consultations with a number of countries to see what could be done to promote the United Nations Development Decade."

The resolutions adopted as a result of the consultations led to the creation of the United Nations Conference on Trade and Development; and this gave rise to a Preparatory Committee, in which seventy-five underdeveloped countries participating in the work of the United Nations at that time began to act together. And that was the first ferment of what would later become the Group of 77.

At the end of that United Nations Conference on Trade and Development, the 75 of them (no longer seventy-five, but now 77) drew up a communiqué that tried to define what the Group was and what its motivation was.

What all the countries had in common, as the communiqué stated, was that they were all dependent, not interdependent, nations in relation to the developed world.

According to Abelardo Moreno Fernández, currently advisor to the Cuban Minister of Foreign Affairs, the most outstanding political action of the Group in its founding moments is, as he pointed out, "the approval of the document known as the Algiers Charter, which was approved by the Group of 77 in October 1967. The intention of this first Declaration was to define the Group's program of action.

In 1964, within the Non-Aligned Movement and at the end of the first session of the United Nations Conference on Trade and Development (UNCTAD), the Group of 77 was created.

A few years later, in the early 1970s, certain events took place, certain advances that led to a change in the Group's attitude. The process of decolonization had already advanced; the political independence of a significant number of new States had been consolidated. All international and regional development efforts had failed, had been disappointing, and within the Group of 77, doubts began to be expressed about the preservation of the prevailing development model.

Over time, although the name of the intergovernmental mechanism was retained, more and more nations joined, bringing the current number to 134, representing Latin America, Africa and South Asia. In 1992 China joined, a country that participates and collaborates externally.

Challenges Faced

Despite the will expressed at the time of the adoption of the Declaration and also of the program of action for the establishment of the new international economic order, major limitations and very serious challenges persist and have persisted for many years.

Nothing is easy for the largest grouping of States on the planet, for this disparate and diverse group, in which various ideologies and different world views converge.

The very nature of the intergovernmental mechanism has contributed to the fact that, in recent decades, the Group has found it difficult to reach agreement on the most pressing problems, and that its decisions are based on the minimums; in other words, on the minimums that can be achieved and not on the real solution to the central and root problems affecting its members."

The numerical capacity of the Group of 77 has been a strength. In the 1970s and most of the 1980s, under the influence of the Non-Aligned countries, it made it possible for the intergovernmental mechanism to impose any decision; even in the United Nations it was called the steamroller, because in reality, when the countries of the Group of 77 decided to act together, they were like a steamroller.

Challenges For Cuba as President Pro Tempore

According to Fidel Castro Ruz, eternal leader of the Cuban Revolution, "the Group of 77 needs (at that time) a collective reflection on how to face the new world realities in order to have access to development, eradicate poverty, defend cultures and occupy its rightful place in global decision-making that affects everyone."

"The Cuban administration, led by President Miguel Díaz-Canel Bermúdez, has throughout this year - said Abelardo - a difficult panorama, marked by the crisis generated by COVID-19, the international war and socio-political conflicts, the deficit of raw materials and consumer goods, the increase in food prices; and even so, within this unfavorable context, it has to work for the fulfillment of the 2030 agenda, of sustainable development", said Moreno.

The tweet reads, "On the pressing challenges and core issues for the development of the nations of the South we will discuss at the G77 Summit. From Havana we will advocate for the necessary use of science, technology and innovation as engines of sustainable development."

The current summit of this coalition in Havana, which has as its central theme: 'Development Challenges: science, technology and innovation,' aims to show everything related to the achievement of the anti-Covid 19 vaccines and the research that continues to be carried out.

The Group takes a clear position on this issue, which can be translated into a stronger and more solid cooperation among developing countries for the benefit of all.

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