Speaking at the plenary session of the Group of 77 and China Summit in Bolivia today, Fijian President Ratu Epeli Nailatikau, called for concerted action on the challenges of Climate Change and HIV and AIDS.

“These challenges must be negotiated and managed in a multilateral context,” he said, “if environmental and humanitarian concerns are to be safeguarded as best as we can”.

The President told the meeting that the greatest challenges facing humanity in the twenty-first century are, “Climate Change and the related phenomena of rising sea levels, desertification, food security, increased human migration, and HIV and AIDS.”

He called for the Group of 77 and China to address these challenges with every effort, saying that the Group must “act progressively within the unity-in-diversity spirit that is our catch-cry.”

Attended by over 100 Heads of States and Governments, Ministers and Ambassadors of the Group’s 133 Member Countries, the Fijian President was the second speaker after Cuban President Raul Castro.

President Nailatikau told the Summit that the Group of 77 and China had a vital interest in the objectives of the United Nations, particularly in the eradication of poverty, the promotion of peace and development, and the reinforcement of international cooperation.

He said the Group is well aware of the magnitude and complexity of the challenges it faces as it strives to accelerate the achievement of the Millennium Development Goals, formulate the forthcoming Sustainable Development Goals, and design a universal global development agenda beyond 2015.

“In recent years, in the area of sustainable development,” the President said, “the Group has defended the principle of the primacy of open inter-governmental negotiations. We have been vigilant in holding our partners, the developed countries, to the outcomes of these negotiations, and we have worked hard to ensure that action-oriented outcomes are globally aimed to benefit those who most require development assistance.”

He said that the accumulation of all these achievements and collective endeavors of the Group of 77 and China were now productively feeding into the inter-governmental processes at the United Nations for the elaboration of the world’s Post-2015 development agenda.”

The Summit and celebrations of the Group of 77 and China concludes today.



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