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Statement by Ambassador Zhang Yishan at Informal Consultations on Cluster I "Freedom from Want" of the Secretary-General's Report

2005-04-25 00:00

Mr. Chairman,

The Chinese Delegation wishes to thank the three facilitators for holding the informal consultations on Cluster I of the Secretary-General's report. We hope that the consultations will enable participants to carry out in-depth discussions on development, so as to extensively solicit and absorb the opinions and suggestions of all the Member States to enrich and improve, on the basis of the existing relevant documents, the development agenda in the outcome document of September Summit.

The Chinese Delegation endorses the statement made by the representative of Jamaica on behalf of the Group of 77 and China.

Development is an issue that has a direct bearing on people's life and nation's future. Two third of UN Member States are developing countries, and their greatest concern is how to attain development and shake off poverty. The most urgent task confronting the United Nations is therefore to enable billions of people in developing countries to enjoy the freedom from want.

We have taken note that the Secretary-General has devoted a fairly large part of his report to development, reflecting some most urgent needs of developing countries. We wish to express our appreciations for this. At the same time, we must also be clearly aware that we still need to make greater efforts to remove "development deficit" and make development truly a core rather than subordinate issue on the UN agenda. We deem it necessary to give top priority to achieving MDGs in the field of development. We also hope that MDGs will become a part of the more extensive development agenda and enhance balanced development of all countries.

The key to success lies in whether political commitments can be turned into actions. National endeavor and international support are both indispensable. We agree with the Secretary-General that each developing country with extreme poverty should adopt and begin to implement national strategy at an early date. Such strategies should be based on their national conditions and reflect the common will of their people. The international community should fully respect and strongly support the efforts of developing countries, provide them with timely and necessary assistance, and create an enabling international environment for them.

Lack of financial resources is the major obstacle for development. We are in favor of the proposal in the report, which urges the developed countries to set up a timetable for their ODA reaching the 0.7% of GNP target. We are glad to see that some countries have reached this target or formulated timetables. At the same time, we believe that in order to fulfill the commitments made over 30 years ago, it is necessary to have some binding programs. This will put political will to a true test. We support the proposal on International Financial Facility (IFF) put forward by the United Kingdom and welcome the exploration by the international community on other proposals for innovative ways of financing, which will complement ODA.

On the question of trade, we agree with the view that "development lies at the heart of the WTO Doha Round". Economic globalization, while creating opportunities for development, has posed new challenges for developing countries. The distorted elements in the existing world trade regime have hampered the development of most developing countries and especially the LDCs. Doha Round should give more consideration to their concerns and seek practical solutions. In particular, due progress should be made on such issues as agricultural products and "special and differential treatment". We hope that the summit will send strong and clear message to the WTO ministerial meeting to be held later this year in Hong Kong, so as to bring about an early successful conclusion of Doha Round.

Environment is faced with grave challenges. For the developing countries, in addition to the problems mentioned in the report, they are also faced with the problems of water scarcity, urban air pollution, natural disaster and biological damage, which call for concrete and practical solutions. In terms of climate change, the international community, while ensuring the principle of "common but differentiated responsibilities", should adopt coordinated actions at the global level, establish an international cooperation framework that can respond to the climate changes after 2012 by using technologies as core measures to enhance global sustainable development. The developed countries should continue to take the lead in adopting emission reduction measures, and carry out effective cooperation with developing countries, so that the international community will be able to respond to the climate change more effectively as a whole.

With regard to public health, we support the proposals in the report on enhancing global capacity building in this field. The constructive proposals of intensifying supervision and control on infectious diseases and prevention and treatment of HIV/AIDS are particularly important. It is essential for all countries to attach importance to public health at national level by establishing and improving emergency mechanisms, enhancing disease control capabilities, completing emergency facilities, information network, and relevant laws and regulations, and taking an active part in international cooperation. In AIDS prevention and treatment, the developed countries should offer more financial and technical support to the developing countries.

African countries are faced with special difficulties in development. It is highly necessary for the report to emphasize Africa's special needs. We hope to see further actions in support of Africa's development, including further support for the "new partnership for African development" (NEPAD). Priorities should also be given to other developing countries facing special difficulties, and the international community should offer necessary assistance.

Development of science and technology is the key to faster development. We are in favor of intensifying global support to such researches and studies. The developed countries shoulder special responsibilities in technical transfer. Countries should also strengthen South-South cooperation so as to promote the spread of applicable technologies.

Finally, the Chinese Delegation wishes to support proposals on debt relief, "quick win", gender equality and disaster reduction.

These are some of the views of our delegation concerning Cluster I. We stand ready to continue to work with other delegations in pooling our common wisdom and making the September Summit a real milestone for world development.

Thank you, Mr. Chairman.

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