The Sunday Mail
Mukudzei Chingwere in Havana, Cuba
The developing world is being weighed down by interconnected geopolitical challenges and there is need to innovate and employ dynamic new technologies to overcome these challenges through sustainable and resilient strategies that foster economic development, President Mnangagwa has said.
The President said this in a speech read on his behalf by Minister of Foreign Affairs and International Trade Ambassador Frederick Shava at the G77+China Summit, which ended here yesterday.
G77+China is a grouping of 134 developing countries from Africa, Asia, North and South America plus China that have come together in a quest to create a new world economic order to challenge the current setup that benefits the developed world.
This year’s summit was held under the theme “Science, technology and innovation can forge solidarity, solve common problems and help to make the Sustainable Development Goals a reality”.
In his address, President Mnangagwa said Zimbabwe was reaping the rewards of harnessing science, technology and innovation to facilitate national development.
“Many of our countries are grappling with interlinked crises, and for us to develop sustainable and resilient solutions to these challenges, we need to be innovative and make use of the dynamic new technologies,” said President Mnangagwa.
“The choice of the theme for our discussion is, therefore, not only timely but very pertinent.
“It is important to note that effective channels for technology transfer, particularly those related to sustainable development, green and low-carbon technologies are essential in the implementation of the 2030 Agenda.
“We totally agree with the assessment that the causes of some of the major challenges facing members of our group are a result of the unjust prevailing international economic order, which favours countries of the Global North.
“There is an urgent need to reform the unjust financial architecture.”
Despite Zimbabwe being under illegal economic sanctions, said the President, the country recently conducted peaceful, free and fair elections and was now setting off on a journey towards attaining an upper middle-income society status.
“To that end, Zimbabwe is prioritising education in science, technology, engineering and mathematics to steer the country towards an innovation-led and knowledge-driven economy,” he said.
He also highlighted some of the achievements Zimbabwe has registered in science, technology and innovations, which include the launch of ZimSat-1 and establishment of innovation hubs at all State universities.
He also pointed out the establishment of a National Pathology Research and Diagnostic Centre as a key milestone in national development.
On Friday, United Nations Secretary- General Mr Antonio Guterres threw his weight behind the G77+China’s quest to reform the global economic order.
“. . .many of today’s institutions — particularly the United Nations Security Council and the Bretton Woods institutions — reflect a bygone era, one where many developing countries were shackled by colonial rule and had no say on their own affairs, or on global affairs,” said Mr Guterres.
“I have proposed measures to make the global financial architecture more representative and responsive to the needs of the developing countries.”