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"The international community has increasingly given explicit recognition to the important role played by local government in development and has on several important occasions positively encouraged partnerships and cooperation for development between local governments."

These are the key messages from the UCLG Policy Paper on Development Cooperation and Local Government

  1. The future is local: local governments are essential, accountable, democratic leaders and agents of development
  2. Local governments are significant public “actors for development” in international cooperation
  3. National governments, bilateral donors, multilateral financial institutions and international organisations are called on to:
    • Further recognize LG and LGA as key development actors;
    • Provide adequate funding for LG and LGA; and
    • Ensure that enabling legal frameworks and programming mechanisms are in place to allow LG and LGA take part in the decision-making processes
  4. Local governments and local government associations are called upon to:
    • Strengthen their capacities and engage in a dialogue with donors and national governments;
    • Ensure that all LG development cooperation initiatives are well coordinated and developed within the framework of country development strategies;
    • Promote participatory development processes; and
    • Explore and develop long-term partnerships with other development actors

The key messages of the paper target two type of actors:

  1. External actors
    • Multilateral donors; such as the UN Development Cooperation Forum, the Global Partnership of Busan, the High Level Panel on the post 2015 global development goals, the OECD and the World Bank, UN Habitat, and the (members of the) Informal Development Partner Working Group on Local Governance and Decentralisation.
    • Regional donors; such as the Inter American Development Bank.
    • National governments 
  2. Local and regional governments