NIOS Class 12 Political Science Chapter 32 United Nations And Economic And Social Development

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NIOS Class 12 Political Science Chapter 32 United Nations And Economic And Social Development

Also, you can read the NIOS book online in these sections Solutions by Expert Teachers as per National Institute of Open Schooling (NIOS) Book guidelines. These solutions are part of NIOS All Subject Solutions. Here we have given NIOS Class 12 Political Science Chapter 32 United Nations And Economic And Social Development, NIOS Senior Secondary Course Political Science Solutions for All Chapters, You can practice these here.

United Nations And Economic And Social Development

Chapter: 32




Answer the following:

1. First Development Decade was launched by the UN in ……………

Ans. 1960.

2. The first UNCTAD was held in ………. 

Ans. 1964.

3. The bulk of the UN’s resources is devoted to economic and social developmental activities. (True/False)

Ans. True.

4. The Group of 77 is a group of rich developed countries. (True/False)

Ans. False.


I. Fill in the blanks:

1. The main organs of the United Nations which take initiatives for economic and social activities are …………. and  ……………

Ans. The General Assembly,the Economic and Social Council

2. The headquarters of FAO is in ……………

Ans. Rome.

3. The regional economic commissions in UN system are part of ………….

Ans. Economic and Social Council.

4. The short name of the International Bank for Reconstruction and Development is ……………

Ans. World Bank.

II. Mark the following as True or False: (True/False)

(i) The United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) is the main funding agency for development projects and programmes. (True/False)

Ans. False.

(ii) The full form of IMF in Indian Money Fund. (True/False)

Ans. False.

(iii) The World Bank helps the developing countries to correct balance of payments deficits. (True/False)

Ans. False


Q.1. Describe the structure of the United Nations for the economic and social development activities.

Ans. UN structure for socio-economic development:

(i) Starting from 1960, many of the colonies emerged as independent countries and gained membership of the United Nations. With the help of their growing majority in the United Nations they were able to create new agencies. The United Nations launched the First Development Decade.

(ii) In 1960s international institutions like the UN Development Programme. UN Industrial Development Organisation, International Development Association were set up in 1960s.

(iii) At the initiative of developing countries United Nations Conference on Trade and Development (UNCTAD) was formed in 1964 to promote international trade for the benefit of developing countries. It has served the developing countries in many ways.

(iv) UNCTAD has provided significant support to efforts by developing countries to expand trade and economic cooperation among themselves at the regional and subregional levels. It has also promoted technical assistance.

(v) In UNCTAD the group of developing countries was formed. This group now consists of 132 countries. It has represented unity and solidarity among developing countries in the negotiations on economic and trade problems with the developed countries.

(vi) For example, it pressed the demand of developing countries for stable prices of primary commodities, like cotton and coffee exported to markets of advanced countries.

(vii) Also UNCTAD made efforts to ensure preferential treatment and tariff concessions in the developed countries for the items promised by the developing countries financing of research and development activities; official development assistance for low-income countries and debt relief.

(viii) The UNCTAD and UN General Assembly went a step further and questioned the unjust international economic order.

(ix) To protect the economic interests of the developing countries, the UN gave a call in 1974 for establishment of a New International Economic Order (NIEO), welded to the ideals of equity and justice for all nations, rich and poor.

(x) NIEO was founded on the following principles, such as, participation of all countries to solve world economic problems on the basis of equality; the right of every country to adopt the economic and social system most appropriate for its own development.

(xi) Full permanent sovereignty of every state over its natural resources; regulation and supervision of Multinational Corporations (MNCs) operating in developing countries; just prices of raw materials and primary commodities and goods exported by developing countries; technical and financial assistance to developing countries and preferential and nonreciprocal treatment for developing countries.

(xii) The developed countries were unwilling to make radical concessions the NIEO faded from the collective deliberations and negotiations. The rich countries took advantage of diverse economic interests within the Group of 77, putting oil importing countries against the oil rich countries and also least developed against the middle income countries like India and Brazil.

(xiii) By the end of 1970s many developing countries were facing serious balance of payments problems and were forced to turn to the International Monetary Fund (IMF) and the World Bank for loan. These institutions are controlled by rich countries. This gave the opportunity to exercise considerable influence over economic and trade policies in the developing world.

(xiv) Because of the economic crisis, the goals of the Second Development Decade achieved little compared to the first Decade. United Nations convened a series of International Conferences to discuss strategies to address economic and social development concern and plans of action are adopted.

(xv) Among the most important conferences related to development are: on Environment and Development, also known as Earth Summit on Environment and Development (in 1992), conference on Human Rights (1993), International Conference on Population and Development (1994).

(xvi) World Summit for Social Development (1995), World Conference on Women(1995) and the UN City Summit on Human Settlement (1997).

(xvii) Besides the UN Secretaries-General also played their part in pushing the cause of economic and social development of the Third World. In 1994, the Secretary General, Boutros Boutros-Ghali presented a grand vision in “An Agenda for Development.”

(xviii) At a UN summit in 2000 the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) were adopted. These goals include the elimination of extreme poverty, achieving universal primary education, improving maternal health and reducing child mortality.

(xix) The development goals were adopted unanimously by all UN Member States and set out yardsticks for measuring development progress by 2015 by curing many of the world’s ills such as poverty, lack of access to education and health services.

Q.2. What are the major initiatives of the United Nations for the promotion of economic and social development?

Ans. Introduction: The United Nations structure for planning, coordinating, administering and implementing it economic and social programmes is vast and decentralised.

1. At the apex of the structure are the General Assembly and the Economic and Social Council (ECOSOC). The General Assembly provides general direction and supervision for economic and social activities.

2. ECOSOC concentrates solely on this work and has operated with the assistance of functional commissions. These are the Statistical Commission, Human Rights Commission, the Commission on the Status of Women, the Commission for Social Development, the Commission on Narcotic Drugs.

3. There are also regional economic commissions, which focus on the problems salient to their geographical areas. Five such commissions have been established:

(a) The Economic Commission for Europe (ECE).

(b) The Economic Commission for Asia and the Pacific (ESCAP).

(c) The Economic Commission for Latin America.

(d) The Economic Commission for Africa (ECA) and

(e) The Economic Commission for Western Asia.

4. A number of other bodies exist in the economic and social field which are not as directly subject to ECOSOC direction or control but which are closely related to ECOSOC activities. These agencies include: (1) The United Nations Development Programme (UNDP); (2) The United Nations International Children’s Emergency Fund (UNICEF); (3) The United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNCR); (4) The United Nations Conference on Trade and Development (UNCTAD); (5) The United Nations Industrial Development Organization (UNIDO); (6) World Food Programme; (7) The United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP).

5. There are specialised agencies of the United Nations. Though these agencies are parts of the UN system, they function independently of United Nations organs and are generally described as autonomous organisations. Each has its own headquarters, constitution, staff and budget. Each was created in the same manner as the United Nations by an international conference.

6. Membership of these specialised agencies and membership of the United Nations is not identical. These agencies are universal in membership. States which are not UN members can be admitted as the members of the specialised agencies.

7. Each specialised Agency is an intergovernmental agency and is established by international treaty or by an agreement between the agency and the United Nations. This agreement is negotiated between the agency and ECOSOC subject to approval by the General Assembly.

8. There are about 15 specialised agencies, which operate in affiliation with the United Nations, we shall identify and describe the activities of following UN development agencies, such as UNDP, UNICEF, the World Health Organization (WHO), the United National Educational Scientific, and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) and the World Bank.

Q.3. Describe the functions of the World Bank as the main UN financial agency for development.

Ans. I. Introduction: The most important financial agencies of the United Nations are the International Bank for Reconstruction and Development (IBRD) or World Bank and the International Monetary Fund (IMF). These are also called the Bretton Woods institutions as these agencies came into being in December 1945 at the Bretton Woods Conference held in New Hampshire, USA. IMF provides temporary funds to aid governments in correcting balance of payment deficits.

II. Functions:

1. The World Bank group is the largest multilateral source of funds are development projects for infrastructure development in road population environment, etc. for social development in the fields like health, population control and education. Some 300 billion dollars worth of aid had been given so far.

2. World Bank loans fall into two broad categories. Investment loans are long-term loans aimed to create the physical and social infrastructure necessary for poverty reduction and sustainable development. World Bank loans helped developing countries to construct basic education schools.

3. Other projects include poverty reduction, rural development, water and sanitation, natural resource management and health. Investment loans have accounted for 75 to 80 percent of all World Bank lending. Adjustment loans have become an important component of World Bank lending and are short-term loans to promote the market structures as well as political institutional reform.

4. During the last 20 years, adjustment loans have accounted for between 20 and 25 percent of all World Bank lending.

5. Other important sources of multilateral financing for development include regional banks, such the Inter-American Development Bank and the Asian Development Bank, have been major sources of development financing for hundred of projects within their respective regions.
III. Evaluation (or Criticism): However, the World Bank and the IMF are under severe criticism. They are dominated by rich countries. They are also not accountable to the United Nations. Their composition is not democratic. Voting in these institutions is not based on the principle of one nation, one vote as in the General Assembly. There is weighted voting, i.e. a member country has number of votes as per the amount of financial contribution or shares in these bodies.


(A) Write the full form of the following abbreviations:

(i) UN.

Ans. United Nations.

(ii) UNICEF.

Ans. United Nations International Children’s Emergency Fund.

(iii) WTO.

Ans. World Trade Organisation.

(iv) NIEO.

Ans. New International Economic Order.

(B) Fill in the blanks:

(i) The ……….. calender year was very lucky for colonies to get emerged as independent countries in maximum number in one year.

Ans. 1960.

(ii) UN Industrial Development Organisation, International Development Association were set up in ………….

Ans. 1960s.

(iii) In UNCTAD the group of developing countries was formed. This group now consists of ……………. countries.

Ans. 132.

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