13 Sep 2017
STATEMENT ON BEHALF OF THE GROUP OF 77 AND CHINA BY H.E. MRS. CHULAMANEE CHARTSUWAN, AMBASSADOR AND DEPUTY PERMANENT REPRESENTATIVE, PERMANENT MISSION OF THE KINGDOM OF THAILAND TO THE U.N., AT THE SIXTY-SIXTH PLENARY MEETING OF THE SEVENTY-FIRST SESSION OF THE GENERAL ASSEMBLY FOLLOWING THE ADOPTION OF THE RESOLUTION AGENDA ITEM 19 (A) SUSTAINABLE DEVELOPMENT (New York, 21 December 2016)
1. I have the honour to deliver this statement on behalf of the Group of 77 and China.
2. With today's adoption of resolution under Agenda item 19 (a) Sustainable Development, entitled "Implementation of Agenda 21, the Programme for the Further Implementation of Agenda 21 and the outcomes of the World Summit on Sustainable Development and of the United Nations Conference on Sustainable Development" by a vote, I would like to express the Group's deepest disappointment that for the first time a consensus cannot be reached for this resolution. The main reason why consensus cannot be reached is related to the periodicity of this resolution, and attempts to bring Revitalization discussions into the substantive work of the Second Committee.
3. In our view, this resolution has every merit for its existence and the substance is justifiable, especially at this critical early stage of implementing the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development. Crucial elements, particularly the institutional arrangements of Agenda 21, Johannesburg Plan of Implementation and Rio+20, as well as areas which this resolution could provide further value-add, including sustainable consumption and production, as reflected in SDG12, and sanitation, as part of SDG6, are unfinished business and/ or areas of the 2030 Agenda which remain almost entirely unaddressed within the work of the General Assembly. Renewed commitments, extra efforts, and necessary political support by the General Assembly are required and the Group have sought to ensure that there is adequate coverage of these issues in this resolution.
4. The Group are not yet confident that the 2030 Agenda and the High Level Political Forum would cover all aspects of the three previous conferences. The Group deem necessary that we need to assess and be provided with evidence-based information so that we can make an informed decision. The Group exercised our utmost and extreme flexibility to bridge consensus by "(QUOTE) requests the Secretary-General to submit to the General Assembly at its seventy-second session a report on the implementation of the present resolution and to include in the report a comprehensive and substantive analysis of the unfinished business of Agenda 21, the Programme for the Further Implementation of Agenda 21 and the outcomes of the World Summit on Sustainable Development and of the United Nations Conference on Sustainable Development (UNQUOTE)". We further insisted to include the sub-title and resolution at the seventy-second session of the General Assembly to discuss the findings and the way forward. Nonetheless, our proposal was rejected by the development partners upfront.
6. It is within our legitimate hope that all Member States and State Members will engage in all future negotiations with dedication, an open mind, and a mindset "to give consensus a chance".
7. In closing, I would like to reaffirm the 134 Members of the Group's commitment to the work of the General Assembly. We have the responsibility to ensure that the work of the Second Committee is relevant; our work must meet the ambitious and transformative 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development which at its heart aims at eradicating poverty in all its forms and dimensions, including extreme poverty while also taking into account the unfinished business and existing mechanism and frameworks.
I thank you, Mr. President.