Media Center

Press Release


  October 5, 2009

The Executive-Secretary of the United Nations Economic Commission for Latin America and the Caribbean (ECLAC), Alicia Bárcena, presented today to the Organization of American States (OAS) a detailed analysis concerning the global economic crisis and the different approaches that countries of the region have chosen to confront it.

Giving the introductory remarks at the thirty-eight Lecture Series of the Americas, the OAS Secretary General, Jose Miguel Insulza, said that “in this political forum, the different perspectives of economic and social development are considered fundamental for the strengthening of democracy in the region.”

During the event, entitled “In search of solutions for the financial crisis: adopted measures and future challenges”, Bárcena explained that “there is a growing perception that the effects of the crisis will somehow change the dynamic of growth, and will articulate the economic, financial, and commercial relationships in a very distinct manner, so much so that we will enter into a new reality. The global economy will enter a new phase.” She also emphasized the importance of “reconceptualizing development from a new, wider perspective at the pace that international economic order rebuilds and with a profound hemispheric and regional identity.”

The ECLAC Executive Secretary acknowledged that there “will be a change in global geo-politics with a more relevant role for emerging economies.” She explained that these emerging economies “find themselves in a situation which is favorable to strengthening their political role and play an essential part of this new reality because they are going to be the driving force behind the recovery process.”

With regards to unemployment, Bárcena said that “even with the efforts made by governments to create employment programs, unemployment is still high in the region and there is a very slow social recovery process.” She added that it is estimated that unemployment in the region will reach 8.5% in 2009, which means an increase in poverty, particularly among women and young people.

Among the recommendations presented by the Executive Secretary to guarantee a positive economic future for the region was that the more developed countries in the region should “advocate and promote representative leadership that brings global development to the forefront of the agenda and provides inclusive global governability.” She warned that this governability “will only be sustainable and efficient if it is based on a system that reflects not only the interests of a group of nations but also the objectives of the international community as a whole.”

Finally, with regards to the situation in Honduras, the ECLAC Executive Secretary expressed that her organization views this situation “with enormous concern because it is a dark stain for our democracies.” She recognized the work done by the OAS during the crisis and offered to cooperate wherever possible in an effort to reach the re-establishment of institutional democracy in that country.

Reference: E-324/09