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Readout of the President of the General Assembly’s meeting with H.E. Mr. Jose-Manuel Barroso, President of the European Commission and H.E. Mr. Herman Van Rompuy

Statement attributable to the Spokesperson

United Nations, New York, 25 September 2013

President Ashe meets with H.E. Mr. Jose-Manuel Barroso, President of the European Commission and H.E. Mr. Herman Van Rompuy

The meeting took place in a very friendly and open atmosphere and all three Presidents stressed the close cooperation and common agenda between the EU and the General Assembly--not only because the EU is one of the largest financial donors at the UN and in development aid, but also because the aims, values and ambitions of both institutions are very similar. In particular both support the PGA’s main priorities for the 68th session of the General Assembly on advancing the post-2015 framework for sustainable development.

The PGA applauded the participation from the EU at high level events and thematic debates during the 67th General Assembly and expressed his hope that this level of engagement could continue during his tenure.

The PGA also thanked the EU for providing a secondee to support his office.

President Barroso also invited the PGA to participate in the opening of the European Development Days on 26-27 November. He invited the PGA to suggest possible expert sustainable development participants with a view to making the post-2015 agenda better understood.

The Presidents reiterated the need to promote the work of civil society in the progamme and activities of the General Assembly, especially with regard to post-2015 and the upcoming summit next year.

The PGA reiterated his intention to promote an open process and to reach out to the public on the issue of sustainable development. President Barroso noted that environmental concerns have moved into the background in the wake of the global economic and financial crisis, but these important subjects were bound to reappear. President Barroso stressed that particularly small island states, which are directly and very immediately affected by climate change in a very practical way, were especially important in gathering support from the public and private sectors.