The United Nations Office for Project Services (UNOPS)

Promoting South-South Cooperation

Statement by Dalila Gonçalves, UNOPS Director for Africa (a.i.), on behalf of Under-Secretary-General and UNOPS Executive Director Jorge Moreira da Silva, at the Third South Summit - G77 plus China, in Kampala, Uganda.

[check against delivery]

Your excellence, President Yoweri Musevini, Excellencies, Ladies and Gentlemen,

It is a pleasure to deliver this statement on behalf of Under-Secretary-General and UNOPS Executive Director Jorge Moreira da Silva.

Let me start by thanking the government of Uganda for the great organization of the Third South Summit.

This is an important coalition - in terms of promoting south-south cooperation, driving sustainable development and climate action, and pushing for peace, all of which our world so desperately needs in the current moment.

Halfway through the timeline of the SDGs - with the goals in peril - and against a challenging development and security background - we truly need coordinated global action.

UNOPS remains committed to supporting the Global South and its aspirations.

We work to strengthen the institutional capacity of the Group of 77 by supporting the secretariat.

But more importantly - we work with many countries in the room today - to offer meaningful action - through our focus on implementation. In this, we draw on our expertise in infrastructure, procurement and project management.

As we have done with so many of our partners present here, we support national development plans and the countries’ abilities to deliver on the SDGs.

From providing support on strengthening health systems, to effective climate action. From offering energy solutions, to helping countries with sustainable infrastructure planning and implementation. We know that many countries need long-term planning to identify national needs, assess financing needs, build project portfolios and be strategic in costing the investments needed, all along while aligning investments with the SDGs. And through our expertise and tools - we offer support in these areas, including in infrastructure asset management.

Allow me to provide some brief examples of this work:

We place great value on south-south cooperation. Examples of our support in this area include housing reconstruction after the earthquake in Nepal, rehabilitation of hospitals in Palau, and providing Covid medicines, with support from India. Similarly, with backing from Brazil and Mexico, we have supported a number of projects in the Caribbean.

In Sierra Leone, UNOPS helps provide clean energy to rural areas, electrifying community health centers, installing distribution grids in villages in a programme that has benefited nearly half a million people.

In Ghana, we have supported the country’s efforts to adapt to climate change, by developing a roadmap to identify climate resilient infrastructure needs and showing how these needs can be met. This work was done together with the UNEP and the government, along with the University of Oxford and the Global Centre on Adaptation.

And in Zimbabwe, we implemented a unique partnership between the World Bank and the UN to address the early and medium-term resilient disaster recovery needs of communities affected by Cyclone Idai. Working together with the government we did our part to help build the foundations for regional recovery and longer-term resilience.

Against a background of multiplying and compounding crises - we need joint - and immediate action on the ground.

UNOPS is focused on offering practical solutions - together with countries, to deliver for people and the planet.

Thank you.

Explore further