STATEMENT ON BEHALF OF THE GROUP OF 77 AND CHINA BY HIS EXCELLENCY AMBASSADOR BOUBACAR DIALLO, G-77 COORDINATOR OF THE PERMANENT MISSION OF THE REPUBLIC OF GUINEA TO THE UNITED NATIONS, AT THE SECOND AMBASSADOR-LEVEL INFORMAL CONSULTATIONS ON THE ALIGNMENT OF THE AGENDA OF THE GENERAL ASSEMBLY AND ECOSOC AND ITS SUBSIDIARY BODIES IN THE LIGHT OF THE ADOPTION OF THE 2030 AGENDA FOR SUSTAINABLE DEVELOPMENT (New York, 30 April 2021)
1. I have the honor to speak on behalf of the Group of 77 and China and wish to thank you for your hard work and efforts and for convening today's informal consultations at the Ambassadorial level to continue the discussion of the alignment process.
2. The Group would also thank the co-facilitators for their note on the possible general elements and ideas that could be used to formulate an agreed outcome of the Alignment Process for the seventy-fifth session. We broadly support the proposed paper which has many good elements and forms a basis for our further constructive engagement in this session.
3. The Group would like also to reiterate its views and positions on the alignment process and propose possible way forward for this process. First, the Group acknowledges that the universal nature of the 2030 Agenda means that the alignment process is inextricably linked to other ongoing processes such as the ECOSOC and HLPF reviews and the revitalization of the work of the Second Committee. We wish to stress that the alignment process should be characterized by a comprehensive and holistic view of the agendas, across all the main bodies.
4. The Group also supports the co-facilitators' proposal for Member States to highlight that the COVID-19 pandemic is impacting all SDGs and that dedicated attention by intergovernmental bodies is required to address these impacts, notably on the most affected SDGs and resulting gaps. We agree that it will be important to closely monitor various aspects of the 2030 Agenda to enable governments to respond to the pandemic and its impacts and establish the way forward to build back better and to strengthen international cooperation.
5. Second, regarding the outcome format of the process, the Group stresses that any decision to be taken on the alignment process must be done with consideration of the procedure. In this regard, we believe that any decision on the way forward should be coherent with the decisions that will be taken on the wider process of the revitalization of the General Assembly as a package, to which the Alignment process is closely connected. Namely, the outcome of the alignment process should continue to be several paragraphs that will be fed into the GA resolution on the revitalization of the work of the General Assembly, taking into account the length of previous outcome as a reference.
6. Third, the Group strongly believes that the alignment process must advances with solid foundations, based on evidence, and after a broad and in-depth analysis and it would not be comprehensive unless we were to have a clear and accurate sense of how the agendas of the General Assembly and ECOSOC and its subsidiary bodies measure up vis-á-vis the 2030 Agenda and its SDGs. We therefore stress the need for further elaboration and analysis of the SDGs, the agenda items and sub-items as well as relevant resolutions to ensure they are better aligned with the 2030 Agenda. Such analysis must go deeper than if the title of an item or resolution corresponds or not with certain SDGs.
7. In this regard. the Group believes that to continue the mapping process and conduct such a comprehensive, substantive and content-based analysis should be the major tasks and way forward for advancing the alignment process, and it would then feed into our work in identifying gaps, overlaps and duplication where they exist. Therefore, we appreciate the Co-Facilitators' proposal to carry out a pilot analysis on SDG 2 as it is a useful first step towards tangible outcomes and sets an example, and we welcome further discussions on the pilot analysis. We once again call upon partners to engage in this process of analysis, so that we can achieve real results and move all of us forward for the alignment process.
8. Fourth, the Group reiterates that examining possible overlaps and duplication should be considered on a case-by-case basis and restates that it is still premature to discuss the criteria at this stage. The Group is convinced that the criteria must be evidence-based, and further elaborated until a consensus is reached among member states on a basis on which to take any decision in this regard. Therefore, we strongly believe that before we consider the criteria for possible overlaps and/or duplications, we need to have a detailed, thorough and comprehensive analysis of the interconnection between agenda items, resolutions and the SDGs. This must also be considered as part of an overall assessment of and in conjunction with the gaps that exist.
9. Fifth, the Group stresses that resolutions adopted on the same topic by both the General Assembly and ECOSOC do not necessarily imply duplication, because they can be addressed by each of those UN organs in accordance with their different and respective roles and mandates, therefore addressing the same issue from their own perspectives and making full use of their own expertise.
10. The Group would like to emphasize that the practices and modalities of the work applied to the 75th session of the General Assembly were adopted under special and extreme circumstances imposed by the COVID-19 pandemic, and it was agreed by all of delegations that these practices and modalities would be exceptional and will not set any precedents for future sessions. In this regard, on the proposal to make technical rollover of some resolutions, the Group is of the view that technical rollovers should be decided by the proponent of the resolution and must be considered on a case-by-case basis, and not applied as a general rule.
11. The Group also agrees with the co-facilitators on the general principle that all delegations have the sovereignty right to propose new resolutions or agenda items and any measure or proposal we make must not undermine that right. Any attempts to establish any sort of parameters on how, what content and when delegations could present new resolutions will only undermine that right of delegations, and thus are not acceptable for the Group.
12. Regarding the periodicity issue, the Group does not entirely agree that one way to address overlaps and duplications could be through consideration of the periodicity of agenda items, as this approach only refers to the frequency of their consideration, instead of their respective contents. Any change of periodicity of resolutions and agenda items should be made by detailed discussion and by consensus.
13. The Group stresses the need to respect the respective role and mandates of each Committee of the General Assembly in making its own decisions on its agenda items and resolutions.
14. The Group supports your proposal to continue the discussion on the alignment process at 77th session rather than 76th session of the General Assembly, which could allow sufficient time for us to carry out and hopefully finish the mapping process so that we could have a full and clear picture of the gaps, overlaps and duplications and identify new and concrete proposals.
15. Finally, the Group looks forward to the draft outcome of the alignment process for this session, namely several paragraphs that will be fed into the GA resolution on revitalization of the work of the General Assembly formulated by the Co-facilitators and will continue to be constructive partners in its negotiation process. We count on your leadership and wisdom to finish this process smoothly and unanimously.