Closing Remarks by Mr. Sha Zukang, Under-Secretary-General for Economic and Social Affairs at the 2010 ECOSOC Coordination Segment

Thank you, Ambassador Wetland.

Distinguished Delegates,
Ladies and Gentlemen,

This year’s Coordination Segment addressed a number of topical issues that are important for the ongoing work of the UN system and for its future orientation. Allow me to make a few remarks on the discussions held here as we close this Segment and look ahead.

First, the Council addressed many important aspects of global public health in follow-up to the 2009 Ministerial Declaration. The discussions, which built on the debates from the Council last year, emphasized the need to coordinate UN system-wide efforts on global public health. The health-related MDGs cannot be achieved by the 2015-target date without concerted action by all stakeholders. We need to send a strong signal about this at the September MDG Summit.

You also highlighted the ravaging effects that non-communicable diseases (NCDs) have on societies and on progress toward the health-related MDGs. The Council welcomed the decision of the General Assembly to convene a high-level meeting on NCDs in 2011.

The Segment addressed the role of the UN in supporting low- and middle-income countries in developing policies that promote job creation and social protectionism. The discussions highlighted the value of UN organizations in this field and their demonstrated capacity to help implement, for example, elements of the global jobs pact and basic health insurance packages in national policies.

I also welcome the Council’s decision to consider, for the first time, the agenda item on “Follow-up to the International Conference on Financing for Development.” This lends needed support to our goals for development cooperation, including South-South cooperation.

Let us, however, remember that South-South cooperation should complement rather than substitute North-South cooperation. The developed world must deliver on their pledges contained in the Monterrey Consensus and the Doha Declaration. Without this follow-through, progress toward several Goals will be severely compromised.

In the area of global economic governance, the Council noted that it is critical that we devise ways in which the G20 can engage with the United Nations and its larger membership. While the G20’s coordinated policy response to the crisis has been admirable, representation in the G20 excludes more than 85% of the world’s countries and more than one-third of its people.

Ladies and Gentlemen,

Thank you for your deliberations on these important topics. Your commitment to the Council’s work is highly valued and appreciated. I count on your continued dedication especially in the next few months as September’s Millennium Development Goals Summit draws near.

Lastly, a special thank you to all the panelists. Your stimulating commentary and guidance gave us much food for thought and enriched the overall content and progress of the Segment and the Council. Our thanks also go to you, Ambassador Wetland, your able guidance.

Thank you and good evening.