10:00 – 12:00: High-Level Opening Session
The High-Level Conference of Middle-Income Countries (MICs) on “Challenges for Sustainable Development and International Cooperation in Middle-Income Countries: The Role of Networks for Prosperity” is an opportunity for middle-income countries to coordinate and shape regional and global development processes, and to further define the role and interests of middle-income countries in the nexus of global sustainability and economic policy. In addition, the conference underpins the engagement of middle-income countries in the post-2015 and Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) processes, facilitates liaison with other related inter-governmental mechanisms, and allow for MIC-specific inputs to various related processes through advocacy directed at key decision makers.

The conference will identify the most relevant strategic issues concerning sustainable economic and industrial development in middle-income countries within the context of the post-2015 development agenda. The diversity of dialogue will allow for the articulation of specific policies and indicative programmes, proposals and strategies which will be collected and included in a resulting declaration of middle-income countries and related programme action plans.

H.E. Ms Laura Chinchilla, President of Costa Rica (read speech in Spanish ; read speech in English)

Opening Remarks
Statement on behalf of H.E. Mr. Vuk Jeremic, President of the United Nations General Assembly (read statement)
H.E. Mr. Néstor Osorio Londoño, President, Economic and Social Council of the United Nations; Ambassador and Permanent Representative of Colombia to the United Nations (read speech)
H.E. Mr. Enrique Castillo Barrantes, Minister of Foreign Affairs, Costa Rica (read speech)
H.E. Ms. Mayi Antillón, Minister of Economy, Industry and Commerce, Costa Rica
Mr. Taizo Nishikawa, Deputy to the Director General of UNIDO, representing the United Nations Secretary-General
Ms. Yoriko Yasukawa, United Nations Resident Coordinator in Costa Rica

Keynote Address:

Mr. Kevin Casas Zamora, Secretary for Political Affairs at the Organization of American States (OAS), Former Vice President of Costa Rica (read statement)

Master of Ceremony: Mr. Shaukat Fareed

Special Report 1: Findings of the Previous High-Level Conferences of Middle-Income Countries
In a special reporting session, the high-level representatives of Spain, El Salvador and Namibia will reiterate the outcomes of past high-level conferences of middle-income countries in Madrid, San Salvador and Windhoek.

H.E. Mr. Juan José García, Vice Minister for Salvadorans Abroad, El Salvador
H.E. Hon. Dr. Tom Alweendo, Director-General, National Planning Commission, Namibia

Special Report 2: Findings of the Regional Preparatory Meetings
In a special reporting session, the representatives of Belarus, Jordan and Mexico will give statements, reflecting their region’s discussions during the regional preparatory conferences of middle-income countries in Mexico (13 May), Minsk (16-17 May) and Amman (23 May). The Minister of Economy, Industry and Commerce of Costa Rica will convey the findings during the open dialogues in New York, Geneva and Vienna.

H.E. Mr. Nasser Judeh, Minister for Foreign Affairs, Jordan (tbc)
H.E. Ms. Mayi Antillón, Minister of Economy, Industry and Commerce, Costa Rica
H.E. Mr. Alexander Guryanov, Deputy Minister for Foreign Affairs, Belarus
H.E. Mr. José Guadalupe Saenz Solis, Chief of Staff of the Minister of Economy, Mexico

12:00 – 14:00: Lunch hosted by H.E. Mr. Enrique Castillo Barrantes, Minister of Foreign Affairs, Costa Rica

14:00 – 17:00: High-Level Dialogue on Inclusive Growth and Prosperity
The first part of this high-level dialogue will focus on inclusive solutions for economic growth and sustained prosperity for all in the emerging post-2015 development agenda. The debate will discuss in particular the possibility of defining building blocks for the growth agenda and identifying the roles of the various players involved in the respective development processes, including the private sector, governments, academia and civil society. It is further expected that this part of the dialogue will shed light on the issue of international trade networks and “fairness” and inclusivity of trade regimes, as a major cornerstone for achieving future prosperity for all.

H.E. Hon. Dr. Tom Alweendo, Director-General, National Planning Commission, Namibia

H.E. Ms. Mayi Antillón, Minister of Economy, Industry and Commerce,   Costa Rica
H.E. Mr. Arsenio M. Balisacan, Socioeconomic Planning Secretary, Philippines
Ms. Laura Thompson, Deputy Director General, International Organization for Migration (IOM)
Prof. Pongsvas Svasti, Thammasat Business School; former Minister of Industry, Thailand
Mt. Ludovico Alcorta, Director, Development Policy and Research, UNIDO

High-Level Dialogue: Inclusive Growth and Prosperity (continued)

The second part of this dialogue will discuss the importance of private business, international trade and the development of entrepreneurship in creating sustained economic growth in middle-income countries. Many middle-income countries face difficulties growing out of their middle-income status, often referred to as the “middle-income trap”. Fostering the abilities and strengths of entrepreneurs and providing suitable policies for private sector growth, while ensuring environmental sustainability and social inclusivity, can provide a fertile ground for sustained prosperity and growth. In order to achieve such a balance, more and better knowledge networks between the governments and private business should be explored as solutions, both within a country and at the international level.

This second part of the dialogue will discuss this balancing act of MIC governments, and provide examples of successful multi-stakeholder partnerships and related solutions from different countries. The dialogue will further shed light on the socio-economic transformation necessary to avoid or escape the “middle-income trap” and will discuss the specific needs of middle-income countries from international partners in this context.

Mr. Sarwar Hobohm, Director for Strategic Planning, Donor Partnerships and Quality Assurance, UNIDO

H.E. Mr. Sham L. Bathija, Minister, Senior Economic Adviser to the President, Afghanistan
H.E. Mr. Roberto Gallardo, Minister of Planning, Costa Rica
Mr. Fabrizio Zarcone, World Bank Resident Representative in San Salvador, Republic of El Salvador

17:00 – 18:00: Special Event on Meeting Standards – Winning Markets: Consumer safety as a driver for trade & economic growth
Trade has been widely recognized as an engine for growth, economic development and in turn local employment and prosperity. This, however, does not happen automatically. A number of framework conditions need to be in place: sectors need to be competitive; technical requirements set by international regulatory authorities need to be met; specifications of global markets, retailers, and buyers have to be fulfilled; and expectations of consumers need to be satisfied.

If trade is to contribute to economic growth, consumer safety has to be addressed throughout the supply chain. Therefore, countries need to establish an enabling environment to successfully integrate into the global multi-lateral trading system, coordinate public-private sector efforts to establish a quality culture, and provide efficient compliance services, in particular in the area of food safety.

Leaders from both the public and private sectors will discuss consumer safety challenges and business and trade opportunities for middle-income countries.

Mr. Bernardo Calzadilla Sarmiento, Director, Trade Capacity-Building Branch, UNIDO

Dr. Carmen D. Booker, Assistant Regional Director, US Food and Drug Administration (FDA), Latin American Office
Mr. Tarek Abou Bakr, Chair, Agriculture Export Council, Egypt
Ms. Juliana Salles Almeida, Trade and Investment Unit, Inter-American Development Bank
Ms. Monica Elizondo Andrade, Head, Scientific and Regulatory Department, Costa Rican Food Industry Association (CACIA)
Ms. Alejandra Díaz (IICA)


19:00 – 21:00: Welcome Dinner and Reception hosted by the Government of Costa Rica