STATEMENT ON BEHALF OF THE GROUP OF 77 AND CHINA BY THE DELEGATION OF GUYANA TO INTRODUCE DRAFT ECOSOC DECISION TITLED "RECONSIDERATION OF THE DRAFT MINISTERIAL DECLARATION OF THE HIGH-LEVEL SEGMENT OF THE 2020 SESSION OF THE ECONOMIC AND SOCIAL COUNCIL AND THE HIGH-LEVEL POLITICAL FORUM ON SUSTAINABLE DEVELOPMENT, CONVENED UNDER THE AUSPICES OF THE COUNCIL." (New York, 15 December 2020)
I take the floor on behalf of the Group of 77 and China and express our appreciation to you for convening this plenary meeting of the Economic and Social Council to consider the draft Decision E/2021/L.8/Rev.1, submitted by my delegation on behalf of the Group.
As conveyed during the extensive consultations we have had with your office and some members of the ECOSOC Bureau, the G77 and China was disappointed that the membership was not given the opportunity to take action on the draft Ministerial Declaration prepared by the Co-Facilitators of the Declaration following negotiations among the entire United Nations membership. We note that the draft circulated to the membership and placed under silence for adoption at the end of the negotiating process was not the version submitted to the ECOSOC presidency by the Co-Facilitators. The Group is of the view that this lack of transparency has set a bad precedent and should be rejected by all Member States. Therefore, our decision to table this draft was rooted in our interest, inter alia, to correct this procedural flaw and allow the opportunity to consider the draft which was the product of negotiations ably led by the Co-Facilitators appointed by the presidency.
The extraordinary circumstances posed by the COVID-19 situation meant that the Ministerial Declaration could not be acted upon in July in a most appropriate manner. We are convinced that a resumed 2020 session would address this by allowing for further consideration of the draft Declaration, under your leadership, before the end of this year.
In addition, the G77 and China considers that we are at a critical juncture at the start of the United Nations Decade of Action and Delivery for Sustainable Development. It would be remiss of us not to give the needed political stamp in assessing the status of implementation of the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development and its SDGs. We must collectively decide on the actions that are needed to address the challenges and to accelerate the pace of implementation.
The 2020 HLPF has provided the opportunity for the membership to do so, allowing for the Ministerial Declaration to convey policy guidance for the membership and other stakeholders in their efforts to fully implement the 2030 Agenda and its SDGs. The G77 and China believes that this is even more critical given the multidimensional challenges that the COVID-19 pandemic has brought on, including the severe impact on the efforts of all developing countries to advance implementation of the 2020 Agenda.
This is the context in which the Group of 77 and China put forward this draft Decision.
Mr. President, our strong preference is for this Decision is to be adopted by consensus. However, we are conscious of the positions expressed by other delegations on the issue and take note that perhaps there is need for further consultations to bring us to the point of consensus. Consequently, in the spirit of inclusiveness and responsiveness that characterizes the Group of 77 and China, the Group has decided to request the postponement of consideration of the draft Decision before us. The Group will continue its consultations with your office and with other delegations and our hope is that all concerned will approach this matter in a constructive manner as the G77 and China has done in order to bring this matter to a successful conclusion.
I thank you.