When the United Nations special session on economics continued on Tuesday (2 September) it was the turn of Arab nations to put their case for the fairer distribution of world economic wealth.
GV INTERIOR General Assembly in session.
SV Alternate representative of Saudi Arabia Gaafar Allageny speaking in Arabic.
SV Seated delegates. (2 SHOTS)
SV Moroccan Minister of Commerce Azzeddine Guessous speaking in Arabic.
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Background: When the United Nations special session on economics continued on Tuesday (2 September) it was the turn of Arab nations to put their case for the fairer distribution of world economic wealth. Little agreement has been reached so far on the General Assembly's two main objectives: to prepare the way for a new world development strategy, and reform the existing framework of international finance. The special session, due to end on Friday, may have to be extended if any real progress is to be made.
SYNOPSIS: There was still little sign of common ground between the rich and poor countries as the session resumed. Gaafar Allageny, alternate representative of the Saudi Arabian government, took up the familiar theme of the developing countries being disadvantaged. With special reference to Middle Easter oil supplies, he warned that the oil would one day dry up, and signs of this were already beginning to show in the oil-production countries. The Saudi delegate said that between 1970 and 1979, the region's assets had declined by 50 percent.
The sacrifices made by developing countries to bolster the economies of the industrialised nations were emphasised throughout the session. The Moroccan Minister of Commerce, Azzeddine Guessous, told the delegates that the industrial countries had laid the foundation of the present world economic order, and had tailored it to serve their own interests. He complained that the wealthy nations refused to set fair prices for the raw materials which they bought from the developing world.
There are hints of some accord in the so-called 'north-south dialogue' over key energy issues. But the atmosphere of the special session has been one of confrontation, reflecting how poor world economic relations have become.