INTERVENTION ON BEHALF OF THE GROUP OF 77 AND CHINA BY H.E. AMBASSADOR MICHAEL RUDOLPH TEN-POW, PERMANENT REPRESENTATIVE OF THE CO-OPERATIVE REPUBLIC OF GUYANA TO THE UNITED NATIONS AND CHAIR OF THE GROUP OF 77, AT THE 103RD MEETING OF MINISTERS AND GOVERNORS OF THE GROUP OF 24 (Washington, DC, 14 April 2020)
Thank you, Mr. Chairman,
I speak on behalf of the developing countries of the Group of 77 and China.
Developing countries are confronted by both a public health pandemic and an unfolding economic emergency, which have the potential to reverse the development gains achieved over the past few decades.
While we acknowledge with appreciation the leading role played by the World Health Organization in coordinating the pandemic preparedness and response and the special measures initiated by the UN system, the IMF, the World Bank Group and donor partners to assist developing countries in responding to the pandemic, there is need for greater coordination of both public health measures and fiscal and monetary policy responses at the global level.
WHO should take the lead in ensuring that Governments have appropriate technical guidance and information as well as sufficient quantities of essential medical equipment and supplies to contain the spread of the virus. For their part, the international financial institutions should work with the international community to take coordinated and effective measures to maintain the stability of global financial markets and supply chains, including by cutting tariffs and removing trade barriers, particularly for pharmaceuticals and health supplies, in order to facilitate the unfettered flow of trade and promote global economic recovery. They should also use all the instruments available to them and exercise greater flexibility in accelerating their support to developing countries, including through debt relief, increased liquidity, and broader lending and technical assistance options.
Another important challenge is to ensure that the current focus on mitigating the impact of the pandemic should not divert attention and resources away from the long-term development needs of developing countries as set out in the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development. Rather, the international response should be a holistic one that fully integrates the three dimensions of sustainable development - economic, social and environmental -, including the Goals and targets of the 2030 Agenda and the modalities for achieving them.
The international community, developed and developing countries alike, must demonstrate that we are capable of working together in solidarity to contain the pandemic and mitigate its impacts and to build a community with a shared future for humankind. The international financial institutions have a critical role to play in that effort.
Thank you, Mr. Chairman.