STATEMENT ON BEHALF OF THE GROUP OF 77 AND CHINA BY THE DELEGATION OF THE REPUBLIC OF CUBA AT THE SECOND COMMITTEE OF THE GENERAL ASSEMBLY ON AGENDA ITEM 18: SUSTAINABLE DEVELOPMENT (New York, 9 October 2023)
I have the honor to speak on behalf of the Group of 77 and China.
The recently concluded SDG Summit marked, the mid-term review of the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development. Took place at a time of extremely critical juncture, in which developing countries still face multiple challenges and an unjust economic order that perpetuates inequalities and poverty.
The reports prepared by the Secretary General contain undisputable figures that portray a rather somber reality. Even before the COVID-19 pandemic the word was already off track to meet the SDGs.
We will reach 2030 with 575 million people living in extreme poverty. By then, barely one third of countries will succeed in halving national poverty levels. We will not end hunger as agreed. On the contrary, today 735 million people face chronic hunger, more than in 2015. At the current pace, none of the 17 Sustainable Development Goals will be met and more than half of the agreed targets will be missed.
We need to promote global structures and policies which can end inequity and inequality, among and within nations, and enable all developing countries to achieve the SDGs.
The Group pioneered the genuine demands of developing countries for the reform of the international financial architecture.
The reform must be aligned with the SDGs. This implies sustainable management of sovereign debt, larger concessional finance from MDBs; issuance of additional SDRs; reducing borrowing costs for developing countries; and upscaling climate finance.
We must continue to uphold the role of the General Assembly in dealing with these issues if we want to make sure that the voice of every nation is properly heard and taken into account in such important matters pertaining global governance.
In this regard, we call upon the international community to follow up and support the UN Secretary-General's proposal for an "SDG Stimulus" for developing countries, which aims at massively scaling up affordable long-term financing for development and aligning financing flows with the SDGs.
We also call on developed countries to finally fulfill their unmet ODA commitments.
The Group call for the full implementation of commitments made by developed countries to immediately provide the means of implementation necessary for developing countries to achieve the goals set for sustainable development.
The G77 and China upholds the principles set in the Rio Declaration, particularly the principles of equity and CBDR-RC. Those principles must guide every discussions on sustainable development. Referencing them should not constitute a matter of big dispute within Second Committee.
The Group recognizes historical advancements in environmental fields.
The Group welcomed the historic decision of the establishment of the Loss and Damage Fund and calls for its full operationalization by COP28.
We urge developed countries to fulfill their commitments under the Convention of Biodiversity on the provision of means of implementation to developing countries, including the goal to mobilize at least $20 billion per year by 2025 and to mobilize at least $30 billion per year by 2030 as agreed in the GBF, as well as to strengthen capacity-building and development, access to and transfer of technology, and access to innovation and technical and scientific cooperation.
The Group reaffirms that SIDS remain a "special case" for sustainable development in view of their unique and particular vulnerabilities, and acknowledges the close interlinkages between the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development and the SAMOA Pathway. In that regard, the group looks forward the convening of the 4th SIDS Conference, that will take place in Antigua and Barbuda. This meeting will mark the implementation of the commitments made in SAMOA Pathway and will set the scenario for the next 10 years of discussions on how to better support SIDS.
The Group gives high priority to the role of science, technology and innovation in the context of sustainable development, specially the spaces we can create by enhancing the South-South cooperation.
In that regard, the Havana Summit on STI and its political declaration launched an urgent appeal to follow a pathway of enhanced capabilities through science for the achievement of the SDGs.
At the same time, we underscore that developing countries' efforts to implement the 2030 Agenda must also be backed up by concrete actions on technology transfer and capacity building as well as North-South cooperation to foster industrialization and investment in quality, reliable, sustainable and resilient infrastructure.
Finally, unilateralism and protectionism including unilateral trade protection and restrictions, incompatible with the WTO Agreements, should be speedily eliminated.
That is also the case for those countries suffering the imposition of unilateral coercive measures that constitute a serious violation of the purposes and principles of the Charter of the United Nations.
Those measures gravely hinder the efforts of the affected countries towards the achievement of the SDGs and sustainable development in general. The international community, including the United Nations system, should continue to firmly reject the imposition of those measures and to work for their unconditional lifting.
Count on our commitment of engaging in a constructive manner during the works of the Second Committee in these issues and also count on our full determination to defend to the fullest extent the interests of the most vulnerable, of those of us who have been left behind.