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New York,14 October 2010

Distinguished delegates,

Our debate today will be devoted to several topics of importance to Africa. I believe that this is particularly opportune.  I hope that our discussion, along with the excellent reports prepared by the Secretariat, will form part of the follow-up to the Summit on the Millennium Development Goals.  It is essential that throughout the sixty-fifth session, our discussions should reflect the importance of these themes, in order to maintain the political momentum for the achievement of the Goals which was generated at the Summit.  Today we have a good opportunity to do this.

The achievement of the goals of the Global Malaria Action Plan (GMAP) has an impact on almost all the Millennium Development Goals.  The issue is critical:  every year, almost one million people fall victim to malaria, mainly in Africa, and this is simply unacceptable.  It is therefore important to support the efforts of the Roll Back Malaria partnership and of the Global Fund to Fight AIDS, Tuberculosis and Malaria, which provide good examples of partnership and coordination among the various bodies and institutions of the public and private sectors which are active in this field.

With regard to the New Partnership for Africa's Development, established in 2001, the report of the Secretary-General on its implementation offers a number of positive elements:  progress has been made, overall, in implementing the partnership and the establishment of a new planning and coordination mechanism should lead to increased managerial efficiency.

However, the report stresses the need to devote increased financial and technical resources to certain priority areas - particularly agriculture - in order to increase the potential of African countries to achieve the Millennium Development Goals.  The need to do more for the empowerment of women and for the establishment of a business climate more favourable to the development of the private sector is also stressed.

I invite you to consider and comment on all the conclusions and recommendations in the report of the Secretary-General.  I believe that it is important to stress that these recommendations call for a true spirit of partnership since they are addressed both to development partners and to African countries.

This same spirit is found in the proposal for an improved monitoring mechanism of the commitments for Africa's development.  Five years before the deadline of 2015 for the achievement of the Millennium Development Goals, increased monitoring is essential in order to ensure that mutual accountability is not a meaningless phrase and that the commitments undertaken have concrete effects for disadvantaged populations.

The proposed mechanism is based on existing processes - this should be stressed - and its value added will derive primarily from leveraging the political authority and legitimacy of the General Assembly.

The report of the Secretary-General describes various options and makes a number of recommendations concerning possible institutional arrangements, whether the monitoring process is placed under the authority of the General Assembly or under that of the Economic and Social Council.  I invite you to share your views on the various options proposed.  Resolution 63/1 calls for the establishment of an improved review mechanism during the sixty-fifth session.  It is my hope that real progress will be made in this regard.

Many aspects raised in these two reports, particularly the importance of partnerships, are reflected in the report of the Secretary-General on the implementation of the recommendations contained in the report on the causes of conflict and the promotion of durable peace and sustainable development in Africa.

Going forward, this in-depth report stresses that certain areas require increased attention and that during the decades to come, some aspects will constitute real challenges, particularly small-scale conflicts within States triggered by the exclusion of significant portions of the population from participation in political institutions and from access to economic resources.

The activities of the United Nations will focus increasingly on the question of social justice.  The report calls on the United Nations to acknowledge the limitations of its action and the need to cooperate and better coordinate with regional organizations, local governments, civil society and the private sector.

I hope that today's debate will make a constructive contribution to these various issues which are of fundamental importance for Africa's development.

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