The United Nations began paying special attention to least developed countries (LDCs) in the late 1960s, recognizing them as the most vulnerable members of the international community.
The UNFCCC entered into force on 21 March 1994, and recognizes LDCs in Article 4, paragraph 9 which states that ''The Parties shall take full account of the specific needs and special situations of the least developed countries in their actions with regard to funding and transfer of technology''.
The Conference of the Parties (COP) adopted a resolution at its sixth session (resolution 2/CP.6) as input to the Third United Nations Conference on the Least Developed Countries, the Conference that adopted the Brussels Programme of Action for the Least Developed Countries for the Decade 2001-2010, on 20 May 2001 in Brussels, Belgium. The programme aims to improve the living conditions of LDC populations and provides a framework for partnerships between LDCs and their development partners.
The COP initiated the implementation of Article 4, paragraph 9 of the Convention at its third session. Following this, and progress at subsequent sessions, in December 2001, at its seventh session, the COP established a special work programme for the LDCs (decision 5/CP.7, page 32), a Least Developed Countries Fund (LDCF) (decision 7/CP.7, page 43), guidelines for the preparation of national adaptation programmes of action (NAPAs) (decision 28/CP.7, page 7), and a Least Developed Countries Expert Group (LEG) (decision 29/CP.7, page 14).