As the meeting came to a close, participants adopted the Istanbul Political Declaration andProgramme of Action for the LDCs (documents A/CONF.219/L.1 and A/CONF.219/3, respectively). In the Declaration, which serves as preamble to the Programme of Action, governments commit to further strengthen their support to the poorest countries by “creating a favorable environment for sustainable development, increasing productive capacities, diversification of economies and building the necessary infrastructure.” The overarching goal of the Istanbul Programme of Action (A/CONF.219/3/Rev.1) is to enable 50% of LDCs to meet the criteria for graduation from LDC status by 2020. To do this five objectiveshave been deemed as instrumental by the partners at Istanbul:
The first three essentially mirror the three criteria of LDC status: economic growth of at least 7% per annum; build human capacities; and reduce the vulnerability of LDCs to various economic and environmental shocks. The latter two objectives can be considered as the enabling factors of success: providing adequate financial resources and ensuring good governance at all levels. Within the text, in the areas of action, primary focus has been given to enhancing the productive capacity of LDCs.
The Programme is the fruit of several months of pre-Conference negotiations and specifies joint action by LDCs and their development partners, covering 27 priority areas, including:
More specifically, the Action Plan calls on countries to build their human capacities by:
Under the Programme of Action, developed countries agree to support national disaster reduction and mitigation programmes in LDCs, and to facilitate South-South transfer of lessons learned on disaster preparedness.
The Action Plan commits governments to enable half the number of LDCs to meet the criteria for graduation by 2020. Forty-eight countries are classified as LDCs, 33 of which are in Africa, 14 in the Asia-Pacific region, and one in Latin America and the Caribbean.