UNITED NATIONS - Global response and policy coordination are needed to combat the current economic crisis and the United Nations (U.N.) has to play a bigger role, economist and Nobel laureate Joseph Stiglitz said here. Speaking at a roundtable discussion entitled The role of the United Nations and its member states in the ongoing international discussions on reforming and strengthening the international financial and economic system and architecture, Stiglitz said the world is facing its most serious economic downturn since the Great Depression. The crisis itself highlights a very important concept that the actions of one part of the economy can affect other parts of the economy. And failures in the financial system have affected the real sectors and many countries in the world, he said. As the economic turmoil has spread to every country in the world, the participation in designing the response ought to involve all the countries in the world, Stiglitz said. There needs to be an inclusive process of decision making, not G8, not G20, but the G192, he said, adding that the U.N. should play a key role in the process. Stiglitz warned that without policy coordination on a global scale, there was the risk that each country would focus only on its own domestic benefits. The roundtable discussion was part of the three-day U.N. conference on the world financial and economic crisis and its impact on development, which began on Wednesday. Stiglitz is the chairman of the Commission of Experts of the President of the General Assembly on Reforms of the International Monetary and Financial System. To bring together all aspects of society, Stiglitz said the commission recommends the creation of a global economic coordination council not only to help coordinate economic policies, but also to identify lacuna in the global economic arrangements, and to identify deficiencies in the global economic arrangements. Stiglitz said part of the global response should be a comprehensive global stimulus, but developing countries do not have the resources and in some cases do not have the policy space with which to undertake that kind of response. He said the commission suggests reform of the global economic governance. He said along with the global outspread of the crisis, the developing world has born the brunt of the crisis, suffering from capital outflows, rising borrowing costs, collapsing world trade, lower commodity prices and falling remittances from overseas workers. Earlier this year, the commission emphasized that international finance structures must be drastically overhauled in the face of the current global economic crisis, calling on wealthier nations to direct 1 percent of their economic stimulus packages to help developing countries address poverty. UN conference focuses on global financial-economic crisis Representatives of developing countries pleaded for economic help at Wednesdays opening of the UN Conference on the World Financial and Economic Crisis and Its Impact on Development. Nearly all speakers who spoke in the UN General Assembly at the initial sessions of the three-day meeting said that their nations were feeling it the worst while they were not responsible for the crisis. The representatives, including a number of heads of state and government, ministers, deputy ministers and ambassadors, complained of a drop in trade, tighter financing condition and a marked reduction in the remittances from its migrants abroad, among other problems, and welcomed financial assistance. The developed world already had its say in G7, G8 and G20 meetings in April and in 2008. After Doha last December, President of the General Assembly Miguel dEscoto Brockmann was asked to put this conclave together. He shepherded preparations through pleas for attendance to establishing a commission of experts to analyze the crisis and recommend reform of the international monetary and financial system while diplomats negotiated a draft outcome document. UN Secretary-general Ban Ki-moon greeted attendees in brief remarks in which he said the world was in the midst of multiple crises food, fuel, flu, economy and still struggling to overcome the last in his litany. It has touched every part of the world, he said, as was climate change. Extreme poverty was also spreading. While there was some financial stabilization and growth in some countries, the UN chief voiced his caution on the outlook of the global financial and economic crisis. I want to say this loud and clear: These are merely signs (of recovery), said Ban For a large number of countries, there are no 'green shoots of recovery, he told the conference, warning that The real impact of the crisis could stretch for years. The speakers following him bolstered those remarks. DEscoto, former foreign minister of Nicaragua, spoke for just over half an hour at the opening. The address was akin to a homily in which he dubbed the conference a meeting of the G-192, reflecting the number of member states in the United Nations, even though 119 nations signed up for the sessions. He worked hard preparing for the conference, traveling the world to encourage leaders to attend, but was forced to seek a three-week delay from the originally scheduled June 1 date, citing calendar conflicts. It is neither humane nor responsible to build a Noahs Ark only to save the existing economic system, leaving the vast majority of humanity to their fate and to suffer the negative effects of a system imposed by an irresponsible but powerful minority, he said, referring to the developed world. We must take decisions that affect us all collectively to the greatest extent possible, including the broad community of life and our common home, Mother Earth, he added. While there were repeated calls for continued if not increased assistance, chairman of the Council of Ministers of Bosnia and Herzegovina Nikola Spiric did not explicitly seek such help, but did seek change as did so many others. There is no such a threat to global peace and stability as the current financial and economic crisis, and if we miss the opportunity to address this issue urgently and decisively it could have devastating consequences, he said, warning that Without prompt action, it is just a matter of time before such a crisis becomes a social and political one. Spiric said what was needed was to establish mechanisms effective enough to create an early warning mechanism enabling the world to react vigorously and accordingly as well as an appropriate tool that could intervene in the market appropriately. He also lamented the lack of a regional European approach in which Bosnia could participate. Many nations from several points on the globe called for regional cooperation. Le Duc Thuy, head of the Vietnamese delegation, pointed out that governments already have begun to cooperate regionally and warned against protectionism. We share the concerns that the crisis may trigger, on the one hand, the reemergence of protectionism and, on the other hand, demand for excessive liberalization without taking into account the different levels of development among countries, he said. Vietnam is in the process of deepening international integration and has been making efforts to fulfill its World Trade Organization commitments and enhance trade and investment cooperation under and inter-regional frameworks, he added. Vietnam was seeking proposals in action roadmaps and necessary mechanism for improving the efficiency of the UN agencies so that they can better help developing countries, Thuy said. Kenneth Baugh, deputy prime minister of Jamaica, was able to encourage assistance with a little sugar-coating. Positive spin-offs can be effectively realized from partnership between developing and developed countries, he said. The developing world provides a huge potential market if its purchasing power can be increased. Assistance by the developed world should not be narrowly viewed in benevolent terms, but more widely as a good business strategy to expand the markets of the developed world and help expedite global recovery, he said.