UNDP Iran holds second technical workshop on inclusive growth programming
More than 80 percent of the world’s population lives in countries where the gap between the rich and the poor is widening, and income growth is non-existent for many. To find solutions to try to narrow that income gap, and to help those in need, UNDP Iran organized a workshop in Tehran. More than thirty people including government officials attended the workshop held on 10 September 2013.
The workshop’s main objective was to introduce general ideas and four indicators of inclusive growth: GDP per employed person; income poverty; human development index; and optimal use of natural resources. Participants were divided into seven working groups to try to come up with solutions: Macro level planning; Micro level planning; Meso (sector) level planning; Meso (region) level planning; Economic development and natural resources planning; Social development and natural resources planning; and Social and economic development planning.
The workshop is part of UNDP’s Inclusive Growth and Poverty Reduction programme with the Government of the Islamic Republic of Iran. Its goal is to derive useful, feasible and applicable strategies and programmes for inclusive growth policy and planning in Iran.
The participants represented a number of Government agencies, who are programme partners with UNDP, including: Presidencies Strategic Planning and Control department , Ministry of Interior, Department of the Environment, Ministry of Cooperative Labour and Social Welfare, the Forest, Rangeland and Watershed Organization, and Agriculture Bank of Iran. Other participants included University faculty members, researchers and NGOs.
Dr. Ali Farzin, Head of Inclusive Growth and Development Cluster at UNDP welcome participants. His emphasis was on the need to identify good solution strategies to the challenge of inclusive growth in Iran – and explained the functioning of the working groups.
Dr. Balasubramaniam Murali, Deputy Resident Representative of UNDP stressed the importance of inclusive growth approaches as a key solution to the problems of our age. “The inclusive growth programme intends primarily to introduce programming principles and criteria for achieving the outcomes of inclusive growth and poverty reduction. The main principles and criteria that underline inclusive growth concept are possibly some of the issues that are of great priority for Iran today and possibly can address some of the very fundamental economic challenges that this country is facing,” stated Mr. Murali. He continued on to point out that the fundamental principles which should guide inclusive growth as essentially being a programme or an activity which results in sustained economic growth as well as leading to equity and resulting in efficient use of natural resources alongside a generation of productive employment which in turn would add value to the economy as a whole. Benefit arising from such programme, he said should benefit poorer groups in the economy and the country much more than the higher income and well-to-do groups.
Dr. Moharam Aghazadeh, UNDP Consultant, gave a presentation on inclusive growth highlighting the analytical frameworks.
The result of the one day workshop was a set of strategy suggestions produced by each work group. These will now be consolidated for the next workshop which will analyze and identify/derive more operational level solutions and practices for programming purposes.
This was the second of ten such workshops to be held over the next few months.