One of the important services provided by UNOSSC is the development and/or strengthening of capacities within the United Nations system and Member States and creating an ecosystem that is more conducive to South-South and triangular cooperation by: (a) strengthening the United Nations Inter-Agency Mechanism for SSTC as a platform for United Nations entities to review progress and lessons learned regarding the implementation of the United Nations system-wide strategy on South-South and triangular cooperation and improve system-wide coordination and collaboration; (b) developing the capacity of United Nations entities, regional commissions and United Nations country teams to integrate SSTC into United Nations global strategies and service offers as well as regional and country programmes such as the regional cooperation frameworks, United Nations Sustainable Development Cooperation Frameworks, common country analyses, Country Programme Documents, and annual reports; (c) supporting developing countries in establishing and/or strengthening national institutions to plan and manage South-South cooperation, and (d) strengthening the South-South and Sustainable Development Directors General Forum and Regional Mechanisms as a space for Member States to share lessons learned on strengthening national institutional mechanisms and ecosystems to promote and facilitate South-South cooperation, and coordinate action in line with recommendations in the BAPA+40 outcome document.

 

United Nations Inter-Agency Mechanism for South-South and Triangular Cooperation

In response to the General Assembly resolution 72/237 of 23 January 2018, in 2018, UNOSSC established an inter-agency mechanism to encourage joint UN support to South-South and triangular initiatives and sharing of information on development activities as well as results achieved by various organizations. Since then, UNOSSC has been regularly coordinating the Inter-Agency Mechanism for South-South cooperation across the United Nations system, including coordination of the inputs from UN Agencies into the preparatory process of the Second United Nations High-level Conference on South-South Cooperation.

 

United Nations system-wide strategy on South-South and triangular cooperation

As mandated by the United Nations Secretary General, UNOSSC led the development of the United Nations System-wide Strategy on South-South Cooperation for Sustainable Development (2020-2024) through a highly inclusive and participatory process involving over 30 UN entities within the framework of the United Nations Inter-Agency Mechanism for South-South and Triangular Cooperation, while taking into/ account the ongoing repositioning of the UNDS and keeping Member States fully informed. The strategy, approved by the SGs Executive Committee in 2020, will provide a system-wide policy orientation to United Nations entities in order to galvanize a coordinated, coherent approach to the policy and programmatic work of the United Nations system on South-South and triangular cooperation. An action plan and monitoring framework for the Strategy was prepared in 2021 and baseline data gathered in early 2022 was included in the SGs Annual Report to the GA on the State of SSC. Click here to read the Strategy.

 

Guidelines for UN Country Teams on South-South and triangular cooperation

At the country level, the implementation of the UN system-wide strategy, aims to better position UN entities to coordinate and harmonize South-South and triangular cooperation policies, operations and programmes in support of nationally defined priorities. The strategy is also a tool to coordinate UN entities’ South-South and triangular cooperation efforts to respond to the COVID-19 pandemic and build forward better. To this end, in the 2021 GA resolution A/76/221, Member States called upon the UN system to mainstream South-South and triangular cooperation in the United Nations Sustainable Development Cooperation Framework (UNSDCF) and regional collaborative frameworks. In line with this, in 2022 UNOSSC, in coordination and close consultation with DCO, Inter-Agency Mechanism and UNCTs/ RCOs/ RCs, completed the preparation of country-level Guidelines/ Handbook on South-South and triangular cooperation. This handbook, however, is different from other UNSDCF companion pieces. South-South and triangular cooperation are not so much viewed as crosscutting themes, to mainstream throughout the common country programming process, but as modalities that allow the UN system to offer a Government the most suitable support to accelerate development results. The As next steps, the Guidelines will be translated into training modules, including e-modules for UNCTs. Guidelines are also under preparation for regional UNDS stakeholders.