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UN chief calls on ECOSOC to "make most of opportunities" for 2012

01-11-2012 09:03 BJT

UNITED NATIONS, Jan. 10 (Xinhua) -- With the UN Economic and Social Council (ECOSOC) playing an "instrumental" role for 2012, particularly with the upcoming UN Conference on Sustainable Development (Rio+20), UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon on Tuesday said it was critical to "make the most of these opportunities."

"We have many milestone events on the calendar -- above all, the Rio+20 Conference," Ban said at an ECOSOC 2012 organizational meeting. "Let us make the most of these opportunities."

At the UN General Assembly in 2010, Ban said he set out a " vision of solidarity for an era of austerity and uncertainty" for the next five years, with ECOSOC "instrumental for each one."

"The first and greatest of these is sustainable development," Ban said. "We must deepen our efforts to achieve the internationally agreed development goals, including the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) our main framework for development to 2015."

He said it is important to reflect on and plan for the post- 2015 development agenda, "perhaps with a new generation of goals that reflect the sustainability dimension."

Another challenge being climate change, Ban said it was critical to build on the progress from the 2010 United Nations Climate Change Conference at Durban.

"The Annual Ministerial Review (AMR) and Development Cooperation Forum (DCF) can promote wider engagement at all levels and encourage greater accountability for our commitments," he said.

On building a safer and more secure world, Ban said, "We know that addressing such critical priorities such as decent work, migration, population pressures, and other issues provides the underpinning for development."

"ECOSOC's role in promoting global dialogue on economic and social issues in post-conflict countries can help achieve our goals," Ban said.

On the Arab Spring, Ban said the council "can support such transitions by sharing its experiences in post-conflict peace building, as well as the success of its ad-hoc advisory groups with the Peacebuilding Commission (PBC)."

He also called on accelerated efforts to empower women and young people, in addition to finding ways to create decent jobs and wider opportunities for women and young people to participate and thrive at all levels.

"As we seek responses to these extraordinary challenges, we need one thing above all else: solidarity," Ban said.

ECOSOC is UN's principal organ to coordinate economic, social, and related work of the 14 UN specialized agencies, functional commissions and five regional commissions. It serves as the central forum for discussing international economic and social issues, and for formulating policy recommendations addressed to member states and the UN system.

Editor:Zhang Hao |Source: Xinhua

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