Many Arab States have taken vast strides forward in recent years in terms of economic growth, although the speed of progress has varied considerably from country to country. Several countries in the region have recently suffered a severe setback not only as a result of the global financial crisis but of internal conflicts ranging from civil unrest to revolution, triggered by unequal access to economic opportunities and social welfare as well as unemployment among young people.
UNIDO’s Arab programme
As the premier agency assisting global economies to achieve a sustainable level of industrialization, UNIDO promotes the vitality of the private sector as one of the main driving force of industrial development through changing patterns of international production, investment and trade.
Through its service modules UNIDO supports in formulating industrial strategies that encourage the private sector to play a leading role in creating employment, income and value added. UNIDO provides technical assistance and the transfer of environmentally sound technologies to industrialists that enable them to overcome these limitations, while also supporting the role of the Government in facilitating foreign direct investment flows.
With the vast potential for more developed countries in the South to support other developing countries, UNIDO aims to bridge the gap for these potentials to be realized. Systematic mechanisms are needed for promoting South-South cooperation and maximizing its impact. These include institutional arrangements such as global mechanisms that could be used to coordinate assistance between and among developing countries.
UNIDO’s efforts primarily focus on the exchange of experience and expertise in industrial policy orientation, formulation and implementation. For this to happen, advocating national and local innovation systems to use modern technology and to enhance adaptive capabilities in utilizing new knowledge is necessary. The aim is to replicate best practice for poverty reduction through industrial development and grassroots innovation. Once these foundations are laid, economies can benefit from institutional and enterprise networking with the goal to enhance productive capacities, trade, technology and investment flows.