Developing countries can prosper despite current global setting
– Former Foreign Affairs Minister explains in new book
Small and developing countries are at a more advantageous position in the current global environment, when they work together in concert on a given issue. Former foreign diplomat Rudy Insanally explains in his new book, Multilateral Diplomacy – For Small States, “The art of letting others have your way.”
A mixture of personal experiences and practical manual, “Multilateral Diplomacy – For Small States” is a distillation of the author’s extensive diplomatic understanding in service to his country and the wider international community.
Insanally, who held the portfolio of former President of the United Nations General Assembly and former Foreign Affairs Minister of Guyana among others, gives an insider’s account of the workings of multilateral diplomacy and very useful views on how small states may enhance their participation in the field.
Written from the perspective of small states, the book analyses the particular vulnerabilities and potential for small countries to overcome challenges to influence international affairs, despite the disadvantages of size and expertise to break into dialogue, tackling global issues.
“Not only do most of them suffer from the constraints of size and financial resources, but they also lack the strategic clout to extract meaningful concessions… nevertheless, I believe that with the use of skilful diplomacy, they often can achieve their goals,”
Mr. Insanally said, at the book’s launch last Friday.
Following the World War era, which is the beginning of modification of the nature of multilateral diplomacy, the book focuses attention on prominent issues on the United Nations (UN) agenda like development, globalisation, peace and security, human rights, disarmament, and the environment.
Meanwhile new issues such as missiles, drug trafficking, terrorism and information technology that stem from the post globalisation period have made the negotiation procedure more difficult for small state pioneering diplomats.
In addition, the former Foreign Affairs Minister explained that the awkwardness of different and unrealistic opinions by almost 200 countries combined with the broadened participation at the multifaceted level and the reluctance of large and powerful states to “relinquish their dominance in international affairs” adds to this challenge.
In her remarks, current Minister of Foreign Affairs Carolyn Rodrigues Birkett noted that “Few have the distinguished career and first-hand experience as that of Ambassador Insanally which gives added credence to the contents of his book… it will be unfortunate if the experiences and lessons learnt from a distinguished diplomatic career spanning over four decades, go unwritten and consequently not shared with others,”
Mr. Insanally, who is Guyana’s Permanent Representative to the UN, told the gathering that his faith in small developing countries derives from the experiences of those that have crafted initiatives that are today ratified and gained international recognition such as the Law of the Sea, the International Criminal Court which was advanced by Trinidad and Tobago and Guyana’s Low Carbon Development Strategy (LCDS). Insanally says that proceeds from the book, will be devoted to providing prizes for young diplomats who need some encouragement in their careers and to charitable organizations.
The book, which is available for sale at the Austin Book Store, contains a number of his addresses and speeches mainly at the United Nations. Copies were also presented to the University of Guyana, the National Library, the Cheddi Jagan Research Centre and the Ministry of Foreign Affairs.