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Remarks by Counselor He Fuxiang at Session 5 of the 6th Multi-stakeholder Forum on STI for SDGs "Emerging science and technology: Trends, challenges and the SDGs"

2021-05-04 10:54

Mr. Chair,

I would like to take this opportunity to share China's thoughts about the role of emerging technologies in promoting SDGs and their governance.

First, the rapid development of emerging technologies, such as artificial intelligence, biotechnology and nanotechnology, is leading to a new round of technological revolution, and injecting strong impetus into human progress. Emerging technologies are both opportunities and challenges. The application and deployment of emerging technologies can provide new solutions for energy, transportation and agriculture, significantly improve human ability to achieve the SDGs. At the same time, emerging technology, without adequate governance, could also impose negative challenges and risks. It's a daunting task for us to find a better way to maximize the benefits and minimize the negative implication of emerging technologies.

Second, China appreciates the important role that the UN and Secretary-General Antonio Guterres have played in promoting governance of emerging technologies. The Secretary-General has appointed a high-level panel on digital cooperation and released his road map. He has also appointed an assistant-secretary-general as his special envoy for technology, responsible for promoting development and governance of emerging technologies. The Secretary-General has put the tasks of leveraging digital technologies and preventing their risk as one of his top priorities of the year 2021 and actively promoted the governance of emerging technologies.

Third, we should put the UN at the core of the governance of emerging technologies. Given the fact that the UN is the most representative intergovernmental organization and has extensive experiences in governance of nuclear energy and outer space, etc, we should put the UN at the core of the governance of emerging technologies. At the same time, we should also encourage the UN to strengthen its cooperation and coordination with other multilateral organizations like the OECD, G7, G20 and EU, and other stakeholders to synergize their efforts in promoting the governance of emerging technologies.

China firmly upholds multilateralism, the UN-centered international system and the international order underpinned by international law, supporting the core role of the UN in the governance of emerging technologies. We would like to strengthen our dialogue and cooperation with the international community in the governance of emerging technologies so as to better harness STI for SDGs and mitigate its risks and negative impacts.

Thank you.

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