What we do in the Arab States, Europe and the CIS

Our Mission

Providing a path to balancing growth and equity in the context of a “new collaborative global partnership for sustainable development” where all stakeholders in the Arab States, Europe and the CIS region, shoulder-to-shoulder in their political, social and environmental development efforts. South-South cooperation embraces a multi-stakeholder approach, including non-governmental organizations, the private sector, civil society, academia and other actors that contribute to meeting development challenges and objectives in line with national development strategies and plans.

Our Approach

is building on existing institutional arrangements, capacities developed and other resources available.
is providing seamless and non-bureaucratic horizontal linkages, local leadership and ownership, as well as inclusive and systematic in a sense that support activities should benefit as many of existing and potential South-South exchanges involving various government, civil society, and private sector players as possible.
is flexible and aiming to strike the right balance between standardization and tailor-made country-specific response.


South-South cooperation is not an option today but an imperative in order for all developing countries to meet their common challenges. Deep and meaningful involvement of Arab States, Eastern Europe and the CIS in SSC, using their rich reservoir of knowledge, is accelerating this key transformation, enriching a government-driven model of collaboration that is broad-based, including the private sector, education and research institutions, and civil society organisations (CSOs). By simultaneously being providers and receivers of inter-regional cooperation, Arab participant countries are assisting both themselves and a number of other regions to emerge on the world stage through cooperation that is radiating to inter-regional and global issues of common concern. While economic cooperation remains solidly at the forefront, other forms of SSC, such as SSC for development, are moving forward.

UNOSSC provides Member States in the Arab States, Europe and CIS regions, including the governments, civil society, academia and the private sector, as well as the United Nations agencies, funds and programmes active in the regions, with access to the Global Three-in-One Multilateral Support architecture for South-South cooperation. The major objectives include:

  • Assisting UN agencies and developing countries in strengthening their South-South cooperation capacities. It works to support countries’ efforts to manage, design and implement South-South cooperation policies and initiatives through the identification, sharing and transfer of successful Southern-generated development solutions. It also advocates for support to South-South initiatives, including through its organization of the UN Day for South-South cooperation.
  • Innovating by continually seeking, showcasing and transferring forward-thinking Southern development solutions to development partners to meet the critical development challenges of today.
  • Enabling countries of the South – emerging, middle-income and least developed – to work together to use their wealth of resources, tangible and intangible, in support of national, regional and global development efforts.
  • Facilitating cross-regional South-South knowledge exchange and transfers the initiative on supporting youth’s and women’s access to appropriate innovative solutions, self-organization skills, access to quality business and employment training, as well as access to minimum required production facilities.

How We Operate

Our operating plan is based on the normative and operational principles as suggested in the outcome document of the High-level United Nations Conference on South-South Cooperation in Nairobi:

(a) Normative principles

  • Respect for national sovereignty and ownership
  • Partnership among equals
  • Non-conditionality
  • Non-interference in domestic affairs
  • Mutual benefit

(b) Operational principles

  • Mutual accountability and transparency
  • Development effectiveness
  • Coordination of evidence- and results-based initiatives
  • Multi-stakeholder approach