External Debt, Optimization of Resources
Two themes which became of major importance in the World Conference debate were highlighted by the opening speakers: the urgency of reducing the burden of external debt, without which developing countries cannot realistically foresee increasing investment in basic education, and the importance of optimizing scarce resources. As stated by the UNESCO Director-General, the "reaffirmation of political will" will have to be measured in restructuring of international cooperation, as well as of education systems and national budgets.
President Borja, for example, speaking on behalf of Latin America, largely ascribed poor educational conditions to the enormous burden of external debt. The impossibility of repaying debt and at the same time meeting the internal needs for progress, he stated, demand Equitable and fair responses from creditor countries to the problem of... external debt".
Optimization of national resources demands flexibility in the provision of education through diverse approaches - "Our National Plan of Action", stated President Ershad, "proposes realistic strategies that mix innovative and unconventional approaches with conventional and traditional ones... communication channels, both traditional and modern, will be utilized to the maximum... Stress is placed on making optimum use of the resources available".
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