The Regular Programme of Technical Cooperation was established by the General Assembly by virtue of resolution 58(I) in 1946. Over the years, it has proven to be a very effective demand-driven tool to support developing countries, especially those with greater vulnerabilities (such as least developed countries, small island developing States and land-locked developing countries), in their efforts to build resilience and expand capacities.
The Regular Programme of Technical Cooperation is funded from United Nations regular budget resources. It is aimed at developing the capacities of Governments to formulate and implement policies for sustainable economic and social development, with a view to achieving internationally agreed development goals, including the Millennium Development Goals. Now, it has a critical role to play in supporting the implementation of the post-2015 development agenda and the future sustainable development goals.
More than any other programme or fund, the Regular Programme of Technical Cooperation has the necessary flexibility to enable ECLAC to respond rapidly to unanticipated short-term demands and development needs that require quick and effective action in countries in the Latin American and Caribbean region. With its flexible programming process, this tool enables the Commission to provide an agile response to the needs of beneficiary countries, with an immediate impact on their emerging and most pressing development needs.
Given its comparative advantage in providing quick-impact development interventions, this programme allows ECLAC to support a very broad range of beneficiaries, including government authorities and technical staff at the regional, national and local levels, non-governmental organizations and civil society, through the provision of advisory services, and capacity-building and technical assistance services upon demand. For example, it has frequently been used to deploy highly specialized, rapid-response teams upon request to assess the socioeconomic and environmental impacts of extreme natural phenomena such as hurricanes, flooding, earthquakes and pandemics in affected countries. It has also facilitated recovery efforts and the development of risk reduction and mitigation plans in countries which have suffered such events. Likewise, it functions as a mechanism to support countries in devising policies to cope with different sorts of external shocks, such as the impacts of unforeseen surges in food and energy prices, and in designing responses to the fallout from economic and financial crises.