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Fact Sheet: Economic Development

The Commonwealth has a great record of advancing the economic concerns of developing countries and small states. It gives them a voice in world affairs. It is a forum for building bridges between the poorest and most disadvantaged nations and developed countries and encourages the implementation of economic good governance.

It was instrumental in the early stages of the HIPC debt initiative. It broke new ground in its collaborative work with the World Bank on the special vulnerabilities and needs of small states. It has spoken out on HIV/AIDS.

The Commonwealth has addressed the issue of globalisation, recognising the challenges and opportunities it presents. The Commonwealth supports the commencement of a new trade round with a pronounced developmental agenda and with the aim of achieving better market access in agriculture, industrial products and services in a way that provides benefits to all members, particularly developing countries.

And it has backed up its position with on-the-ground assistance and technical advice. The Commonwealth is helping its members deal with globalisation in practical ways - for example by providing a technical adviser to developing country Ambassadors to the WTO in Geneva to support them in developing informed and effective negotiating positions.

February 2002

For further information:

Contact: Terry Walls, Media Information Officer, CHOGM 2002 Task Force
Mobile: 0419 606 107

Prepared by: CHOGM 2002 Task Force
Department of the Prime Minister and Cabinet

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