General Conference 10th session - Summary of Round Table 4

  Summary of Round Table 4, 2 December 2003
  Post Crisis Industrial Rehabilitation and Reconstruction

Panelists:

  • HE Mr. Xanana Gusmao, President of Timor-Leste
  • HE Ms. Kadi Sesay, Minister of Trade & Industry of the Republic of Sierra Leone
  • HE Mr. Yukio Takasu, Ambassador of Japan to Vienna, Austria
  • Mr. Ranjith Fernando, Secretary of the Ministry of Enterprise Development, Industrial Policy, Investment Promotion and Constitutional Affairs of Sri Lanka
  • Mr. Maurizio Pieroni, Disaster Management and Post-Crisis Senior Liaison Officer of UN Habitat in Geneva, Switzerland
  • Mr. Erick De Mul, Former UN Resident and Humanitarian Coordinator in Afghanistan and Angola

Round Table #4 Post-Crisis Industrial Rehabilitation and Reconstruction took place with a diverse group of distinguished representatives of

i. recipient countries in post crisis
ii. donor communities and
iii. international organizations.

The purpose of the Round Table was to listen to various experiences and suggestions on possible areas and modalities of UNIDO interventions in the rehabilitation and reconstruction of post crisis countries.

Renato Fornocaldo, Managing Director of UNIDO, moderated the Round Table beginning with a comprehensive introduction on UNIDO's Post-Crisis Rehabilitation and Reconstruction. The introduction was followed by an inspirational speech by Xanana Gusmao, President of Timor-Leste. Mr. Gusmao outlined the suffering of the independence movement and emphasized that independence will lack meaning if the government cannot respond to the needs of the people today. "We need to encourage the people to run their own life for sustainability so that independence means something." Yukio Takasu, Ambassador of Japan, focused on the concept of Human Security summarized by 4 main points:

1)Empowering individuals and communities
2) The seamless transition from humanitarian assistance to reconstruction assistance
3) Integrated and better coordinated approach among partners
4)Earlier formulation of rehabilitation and reconstruction plans long before the ceasefire is agreed.

Mr. Takasu also emphasized UNIDO's role in the reconstruction phase, in particular the rehabilitation of micro small and medium enterprises and the empowerment of rural communities through agro-industry development. Ranjith Fernando, former President of the National Development Bank in Sri Lanka, explained the background of Sri Lanka's crisis both on the majority v. minority level and the political conflict between the political parties, and further stressed the important role of UNIDO to bring trust back between the conflicting groups, through its active involvement in Sri Lanka's development. The Minister of Trade and Industry of Sierra Leone, Kadi Sesay, provided an overview of Sierra Leone's experience and stressed the need for an integrated multi-sectoral, multi-dimensional approach where humanitarian, rehabilitation and reconstruction work takes place side by side, for effective transition from humanitarian to development. Dr. Sesay also emphasized that early needs assessment is better for overall reconstruction and that UNIDO in particular would have contributed more to Sierra Leone if it had come in earlier. Erick De Mul, former UN Resident and Humanitarian Coordinator in Angola and Afghanistan, described his 32 years of involvement in humanitarian and development work highlighting two major points:

1) That post-crisis intervention must be realistic
2) UNIDO should fight to be at the table when discussing post-crisis issues.

Lastly Maurizio Pieroni, former Head of UN Habitat of the Suleymania Governorate in Iraq, presented his experiences, identifying the prevailing trend for competition amongst UN Agencies in humanitarian and development work. Mr. Pieroni also described how UN Habitat was involved in rehabilitation efforts in construction and housing, and further proposed more cooperation with UNIDO in future opportunities.

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