Stable functioning of an international organization is founded on observing the balance of interests between member countries. The interests of key groups of countries coincide in the field of industrial cooperation only on a rather limited scale. Overlapping interests in the United Nations Industrial Development Organization's ( UNIDO) framework correspond basically to a limited assistance to industrial development in the third world countries on the part of Western and to a much lesser extent former Eastern bloc countries. The activities of UNIDO are oriented for this reason only on technical assistance to developing countries and aim to meet some of their requirements. At the same time, the Western and the former centrally planned countries had until recently different standpoints on the forms and types of assistance. As a result, international assistance reflected more or less the aims of both groups of countries. At the same time, the third world countries, due to their numerical superiority, frequently imposed their terms in UNIDO documents. The organization did not therefore display a worldwide approach to solving global problems of comprehensive industrial development at large.
In view mostly of the lack of special common interest on the part of the North in strengthening UNIDO, the place of the organization in the UN system did not in practice fully conform with the tasks set in its Constitution and earlier in General Assembly resolution 2152 (XXI). UNIDO could not in full play a key role in the efforts of the UN system in providing assistance to industrial development, and its functions are often performed by other UN organs and specialized agencies. The role of UNIDO in utilizing United Nations Development Programme resources remains relatively small.
UNIDO has had quite a persistent reputation as a rather inefficient, if not worthless, organization, unable to tackle the global problems of underdevelopment and industrial cooperation on a large scale. This poor reputation, especially among some leading Western