Statement by Ambassador Munir Akram Permanent Representative of Pakistan to the United Nations at the Handing Over/Taking Over Ceremony for Chair of G77 and China
(15 January 2020)

Excellencies and Colleagues,

Good Afternoon,

Let me begin by thanking my dear friend, His Excellency Ambassador Riyad Mansour Ambassador and Permanent Representative of State of Palestine to the United Nations, for his able leadership of the Group of 77 during the past year.

I would like to congratulate His Excellency Ambassador Rudolph Michael Ten-Pow, Permanent Representative of Cooperative Republic of Guyana, for assuming the Chair of G77 and China.

The Group of 77 today is called upon to play a vital role in guiding the global endeavours to realize the 2030 Agenda and the SDGs.

Mr. Chair,

The world today is facing unprecedented challenges. There is an alarming erosion of multilateralism and international cooperation; withdrawals from international agreements and disregard for international legal norms. The unilateral use of force and foreign intervention have become more frequent. The right of self-determination of peoples under foreign occupation is brutally denied.

We also see “slowdown in global economic growth under the weight of trade and technology disputes, damaging our efforts to realize the SDGs, eradicate poverty, and combat climate change. While we witness a rise in per capita income”; disparities and inequalities are increasing among and within countries.

The present model of development has delivered prosperity to many but it has not yet eliminated poverty and deprivation. Moreover, this development model has created unprecedented levels of inequality, which undermines social cohesion and sustainable economic growth. And, it has brought the world’s eco-systems close to tipping points that pose an existential threat to the planet.

Mr. Chair,

Representing over 70% of the world’s people, our Group’s responsibilities are immense.

Over the years, the Group of 77 and China has shaped the discourse and outcomes of several multilateral processes on a range of issues of collective importance to the international community.

We need to take on the challenges of our era head on.

We need to demand that developed countries change their production and consumption patterns and encourage public and private investments which are aligned with the SDGs.

We must address anomalies in the global financial system to make it people centered while providing opportunities to developing countries by honouring their right to development.

In the wake of receding global flows in foreign direct investment, a significant acceleration is required to meet the investment needs associated with the sustainable development goals.

We must also pay attention to the fight against illicit financing flows and return of stolen assets, international tax and customs cooperation, sharing of data, financing for development, and reducing debt burden of developing countries through a more democratic and equal

While we underline the importance of Official Development Assistance (ODA), we also need to build a business case to generate investment in sustainable development.

Information and communications technologies, including frontier technologies, can help us in surmounting development challenges.

We must secure our due share in taxes generated through monetization of data belonging to the developing countries.

Mr. Chair,

There is no single type of investment more essential for the achievement of the SDGs than infrastructure – including energy, transport, communications and social infrastructure.

Sustainable infrastructure investment (both network and non-network infrastructure) is key to the structural transformation needed to meet the core criteria for SDG achievement i.e. growth, social inclusion and low carbon outcomes.

Mr. Chair,

The developing countries must strengthen south-south cooperation, which can open new avenues and present the world an alternate development model based on inclusivity, self-respect, common endeavor, and economic independence.

The China-Pakistan Economic Corridor is an outstanding example of south-south cooperation whose benefits are not restricted to participating countries alone, but will include the region and beyond.

Mr. Chair,

As a group, our unity remains paramount. We need to safeguard our basic principles, such as the ‘right to development’ and ‘common but differentiated responsibilities’ (CBDR).

We must ensure that the global development discourse remains people-centered, committed to leave no one behind and reach the farthest behind first.

I thank you.