Economic and Financial Committee (Second Committee) - Joint meeting with the Economic and Social Council

10 October 2023  - 10:00am - 1:00pm - Conference Room 2

Leveraging Commodities for Sustainable Economic Development

The 2023 Sustainable Development Goals report urges for a turning point to support developing countries to achieve development goals: “We cannot simply continue with more of the same and expect a different result.” It may be time to rethink economic development models that have contributed to developing countries' economic vulnerability.

Speaker Bios

H.E. Paula Narvaez

President of the Economic and Social Council

Her Excellency Paula Narvaez was elected the 79th President of the Economic and Social Council on 27 July 2023. Ambassador Paula Narvaez is currently the Ambassador and Permanent Representative of Chile to the United Nations in New York. Her Excellency assumed her duties as Permanent Representative of Chile to the United Nations on 0 June 2022. Before this latest appointment, Ms. Narvaez was the Office-in-Charge at the United Nations Entity for Gender Equality and Empowerment of Women (UN-Women) in Guatemala, from February to May 2022.


Sheikh Mohammed Belal

Managing Director of the Common Fund for Commodities

Amb. Sheikh Mohammed Belal, a Bangladeshi national, was elected Managing Director of the Common Fund for Commodities (CFC) in the CFC's Governing Council on 4 December 2019 and officially assumed his post on 8 April 2020. Prior to his appointment at CFC, Amb. Belal was the Ambassador of Bangladesh to the Netherlands with concurrent accreditations to Bosnia and Herzegovina and Croatia from March 2014 to February 2020. He has also held a number of leadership positions at OPCW, ICC, PCA and served the government of Bangladesh in various diplomatic capacities.

Raphie Kaplinsky

Honorary Professor at the Science Policy Research Unit, University of Sussex

Also an Emeritus Professor at the Open University and Research Associate in Policy Research in International Services and Manufacturing (PRISM), University of Cape Town. Kaplinsky's publications and policy support activities can be grouped into a series of subject matters- sustainable and inclusive development, techno-economic paradigms, globalization and global value chains, productivity and innovation, appropriate technology, the impact of China (particularly on Africa), commodities and the terms of trade, industrial policy, and post-Apartheid transformation in South Africa.

Lynda Pickbourn

Associate Professor, Gender Studies at Mount Holyoke College

Also, Senior Lecturer in Economics at the University of Massachusetts, Amherst, where she also co-directs the African Development Policy Program at the Political Economy Research Institute. She has research interests in economic development, feminist economics and political economy, with a focus on Africa. She has published work on economic methodology and on issues related to gender, economic development and structural transformation in Africa, including aid effectiveness, rural-urban migration, informal employment and green industrial policy. Her work has appeared in journals such as World Development, Feminist Economics, Journal of Development Studies and Journal of International Development. She is a member of the African Economic Research Consortium and serves on the boards of the International Association for Feminist Economics (IAFFE) and the Association fora the Advancement Women Economists (AAAWE). 

Miho Shirotori

Acting Director, UNCTAD's Division on International Trade and Commodities

Ms. Shirotori has extensive experience working with the governments of developing countries on policy formulation and analysis of trade and sustainable development. As a UN Senior Economist, she has led research and technical cooperation activities and supported intergovernmental decision-making processes on issues including multilateral and regional trade agreements, export diversification, and green trade promotion. She represents UNCTAD in numerous global conferences and inter-agency activities on inclusive and sustainable economic development. She holds a master's degree in economics from the London School of Economics and Political Science, and a master's degree in public administration from Harvard Kennedy School. 

Amir Lebdioui

Development Economist, University of Oxford

Dr. Amir Lebdioui is a development economist, and Associate Professor in the Department of International Development at the University of Oxford. He was previously based at the SOAS and at the London School of Economics (LSE) where he led a research and policy engagement programme on the Future of Trade in Latin America. His research has focused on the economic diversification of resource-dependent nations, low carbon innovation, biodiversity-based development models. Amir also regularly advises governments and international institutions on green industrial policy strategies. He is an Algerian national and hold a PhD from the University of Cambridge.

Joseph E. Stiglitz

University Professor, Columbia University

Stiglitz is teaching at the Columbia Business School, Graduate School of Arts and Sciences, Department of Economics, and School of International and Public Affairs. Founder and Co-President of the Initiative for Policy Dialogue. Chief Economist at The Roosevelt Institute. Co-Chair of the Independent Commission for the Reform on International Corporate Taxation (ICRICT). Co-Chair of the High-Level Expert Group on the Measurement of Economic Performance and Social Progress, OECD.

Tawanda Mutasah

Vice President of Global Partnerships & Impact

Dr. Mutasah is Vice President of Global Partnerships and Impact (GPI), with responsibility for overall strategic and operational leadership of Oxfam America's GPI division, and for identifying, nurturing, and maintaining a wide range of strategic partnerships within and outside the Oxfam International confederation on all matters related to programmatic impact and global networks. Mutasah joined Oxfam American in 2021, bringing over 25 years of international nonprofit management and program leadership and innovation in a vast range of areas from humanitarian response to advocacy and long-term development. He was the Senior Directo of International Law and Policy at Amnesty International where, among other things, he established and operationalized the global human rights movement's Sustainable Development Goals engagement and partnerships.

Carlos Daniel Amorin Tenconi

Chair of Second Committee

Prior to his appointment in 2019 as Permanent Representative to the United Nations, Mr. Amorin served as Secretary-General of Uruguay's Ministry of Foreign Relations from October 2017 and July 2019. He was the country's Ambassador to Brazil from 2008 to September 2017 and its Director-General for Economic Affairs and Regional Integration and Southern Common Market (MERCOSUR) from March 2005 to May 2008, during which time he served as National Coordinator for the Common Market Group of MERCOSUR.