Capacity development for Romania to contribute to the promotion and protection of global and regional public goods
With a view to the country’s new EU member status, UNDP Country Programme 2010-2012 supports Romania to increase contributions to the promotion and protection of global and regional public goods (GPG)1 that require partnerships and commitments with the international community.
According to a classical definition (Samuelson, 1954) public goods are non-rival (i.e. consumption by one person does not reduce consumption opportunities for others) and non-excludable (i.e. nobody can be prevented from consumption, once the goods are provided). The sectors that are well known for providing public goods include: environment, health, knowledge, security/peace and governance.
To support enhanced national capacity for promotion and protection of GPG, UNDP Romania implements programmes and projects in the following sub-areas in 2010-2012:
Currently, UNDP activities support Romania in its effort to design and implement creative cross-border cooperation programmes that leverage the country’s development capacities and structural funds to protect and promote GPGs, in cooperation with the Ministry of Tourism and Regional Development, Ministry of Environment and Forests, Ministry of Culture and National Heritage and Ministry of Economy. The priority countries for the cross-border cooperation are also targeted by the EU Neighbourhood Policy, i.e., Moldova, Serbia and Ukraine.
Environment management and protection represents an important area for the Government of Romania to contribute to GPG, e.g. sustainable use and management of shared natural resources and heritage. In 2010-2012, UNDP programmes in Romania focused on biodiversity, climate change adaptation and mitigation, energy efficiency, clusters on agro-food, geo-thermal resources and shared cultural heritage. The Danube, the Danube Delta Biosphere Reserve, the Lower Prut basin,Blak Sea basin and the Carpathian Mountains are the main focus of cross-border cooperation programmes to protect and promote biodiversity and cultural heritage.
To date, UNDP has been pursuing “shared solutions to shared problems” principle with neighboring countries. This is a special request of the Government of Romania, which perceives the UNDP Romania projects in environment as a possible basis for an institutional setup in support of sub-regional, eastern cooperation policy, beyond 2012. Relevant for this strategic development are the project proposals on the designation of a Romanian-Ukrainian MAB UNESCO Biosphere Reserve in Northern Carpathians, a trilateral partnership with Moldova and Ukraine in the Danube Delta and Lower Prut Euro-region, MAREAS - monitoring and assessment of changing environment in the Black Sea region, etc.
Overall, the UNDP agenda centers on achieving the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) horizon 2015. Specifically MDG #7 aims at environmental sustainability, through mainstreaming sustainable development principles into national policies and programmes, and reversing natural resources loss.
In 2010, UNDP work concentrated on improving the domestic legal framework for effective environmental governance and initiating partnerships to enhance Romania’s role in the regional cooperation for sustainable management of the shared natural resources. UNDP developed biodiversity conservation strategies and initiated partnerships with academia and research institutions.
1An international public good is a benefit providing utility that is in principle available to everybody throughout the globe. The concept of global public goods achieved prominence with the UNDP publication Global Public Goods (Kaul et al, 1999).
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