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UN Economic Commission for Latin America and the Carribean (UNECLAC / CEPAL)

by Khristine Custodio last modified Nov 19, 2013 09:22 AM
The United Nations Economic Commission for Latin America and the Carribean (UNECLAC; also known in its Spanish acronym as CEPAL) was founded with the purpose of contributing to the economic development, reinforcing economic ties among countries and with other nations, and promoting social development. It promotes integrated water resources management and strengthens water utilities in the region.

Inland water ecosystems are often extensively modified by humans, more so than marine or terrestrial systems, and are amongst the most threatened ecosystem types of all. Physical alteration, habitat loss and degradation, water withdrawal, overexploitation, pollution and the introduction of invasive alien species are the main threats to these ecosystems and their associated biological resources

ECLAC / CEPAL's Mandate and Mission:

  • Provide substantive secretariat services and documentation for the Commission and its subsidiary bodies;
  • Undertake studies, research and other support activities within the terms of reference of the Commission;
  • Promote economic and social development through regional and subregional cooperation and integration;
  • Gather, organizes, interprets and disseminates information and data relating to the economic and social development of the region;
  • Provide advisory services to Governments at their request and plans, organizes and executes programmes of technical cooperation;
  • Formulate and promotes development cooperation activities and projects of regional and subregional scope commensurate with the needs and priorities of the region and acts as an executing agency for such projects;
  • Organize conferences and intergovernmental and expert group meetings and sponsors training workshops, symposia and seminars;
  • Assist in bringing a regional perspective to global problems and forums and introduces global concerns at the regional and subregional levels;
  • Coordinate ECLAC activities with those of the major departments and offices at United Nations Headquarters, specialized agencies and intergovernmental organizations with a view to avoiding duplication and ensuring complementarity in the exchange of information.

More about ECLAC / CEPAL

Established in 1948, ECLAChas developed a school of thought concerning medium- and long-term economic and social trends in the Latin American and Caribbean countries, known as "historical structuralism" which focuses on the analysis of the ways in which the region's institutional legacy and inherited production structure influence the economic dynamics of developing countries and generate behaviours that differ from those of developed nations.

ECLAC also made a major contribution to the analysis of the debt crisis and the modalities of macroeconomic adjustment used in the 1980s and to the debate on sustainable development that has been going on since the 1960s.

ECLAC promotes integrated water resources management in the region and strengthens water utilities.

Useful links


Av. Dag Hammarskjöld 3477
Vitacura, Santiago de Chile

+56 2 2471 2000
+56 2 208 0252



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