As the International Donors’ Conference came to a close on Wednesday, the major players behind the conference made final remarks on how to take the overwhelming support for Haiti – countries pledged $5.3 billion over the next two years – and translate it into long-term development assistance. Secretary General Ban Ki-moon closed saying, “Now, it comes down to implementation – delivery on our promises, transparency, and accountability. We must make sure Haiti gets the money it needs when it needs it. And we must guarantee that it is well-coordinated and well-spent.” See below for excerpts from Secretary Clinton, Haitian President Préval, Brazilian Foreign Minister Amorim, French Foreign Minister Kouchner, and Vice President of Spain Fernández de la Vega that highlight development reform principles and offer solutions for the coming years:
“Aid is important, but aid has never saved a country. Our goal must be the empowerment of the Haitian people. They are the ones who will carry on the work of rebuilding Haiti long after our involvement has ended. Haiti does not only need medicines and surgeries, but it needs the doctors and nurses who can deliver the regular care and sustain a thriving health system. Haiti not only needs new school buildings, but it needs teachers and administrators. It needs the people of Haiti to be given the tools to be able to deliver on the promise of their own future.” –Secretary Clinton
“…assistance is not development, but it does prepare the ground for development… We must take advantage of this opportunity that we now have and I appeal to my fellow Haitians to understand the effort that has now been made by the international community and the responsibility that we now have in the interest of our country to respond rapidly and appropriately.” –Haitian President Préval
“You don’t have real economic development if you don’t have markets. So I want to insist if we want, really, to help Haiti, not to be dependent on charity, but really to develop – let us try to open markets to Haiti.” –Brazilian Foreign Minister Amorim
“What has changed, as the prime ministers just told me, is the development paradigm… We’re not just satisfied with – and we’ve all been humanitarian workers in Haiti. What has changed now is that the Haitian people have taken the decision to assume responsibility for their own future.” –French Foreign Minister Kouchner
“We had business people, we had local governments, we had nongovernmental organizations…And then on that basis, we set a new financial architecture, a new institutional architecture, in order to follow up on the plan. Control, transparency and coordination, and quite honestly, I believe that with these parameters we can move forward in a more effective way with this new global model for international cooperation.” –Vice President of Spain Fernández de la Vega
Read the full transcript of yesterday’s closing remarks here.