Secretary-General's remarks at press encounter with H.E. Truong Tan Sang, President of the Socialist Republic of Viet Nam
Hanoi, Viet Nam, 22 May 2015
I am pleased to be back in Viet Nam, and to see how the country continues to advance.
President Truong T?n Sang and I have just had a very productive discussion.
I commended the President on Viet Nam's impressive progress towards achieving the Millennium Development Goals.
Viet Nam is also displaying leadership in the development of a set of holistic sustainable development goals to be adopted by the General Assembly in September.
We agreed that ensuring a smooth transition from the MDGs to the new sustainable development goals, SDGs, is a high priority for both the United Nations and Viet Nam.
We also discussed Viet Nam’s efforts to combat climate change.
Viet Nam is vulnerable to the effects of climate change, including increasing temperatures, rising sea levels and more extreme weather events.
I emphasized to the President the importance of Viet Nam submitting its Intended Nationally Determined Contribution as soon as possible.
These plans will form the foundation of the climate agreement that we need to reach in Paris this December.
Early and ambitious plans by all Parties will strengthen confidence in reaching a meaningful, universal agreement on climate change.
I also commended the President on Viet Nam’s efforts to move down a low-carbon pathway.
Developing countries, such as Viet Nam, need resources to invest in cleaner technologies and in building more resilience.
We need to mobilize these resources as quickly as possible, including those pledged to the Green Climate Fund.
Investing in clean energy can help us power sustainable development and reduce emissions so we can keep global temperature rise below 2 degrees Celsius.
The Green One UN House, which I will inaugurate tomorrow, is an example of how the UN and Viet Nam can work together to combat climate change and deliver as one for the people of Viet Nam.
I thanked the President for Viet Nam’s strong cooperation with the UN Country Team as well as its contributions to UN peacekeeping operations.
Viet Nam is playing an increasingly important role in the United Nations at the global level.
It served as a non-permanent member of the Security Council in 2008 to 2009 and is currently serving on the Human Rights Council for 2014 to 2016.
Human Rights Council members are expected to “uphold the highest standards in the promotion and protection of human rights”.
This places Viet Nam in an ideal position to demonstrate its commitment to human rights by working to improve its own domestic human rights record.
The UN stands ready to assist the Government of Viet Nam in this important task.
The President and I also discussed regional security concerns, including the ongoing tensions in the South China Sea, or East Sea as you call it here.
I have consistently called on all parties concerned to resolve their disputes through dialogue and in conformity with international law.
It is important to avoid actions that would provoke or exacerbate tensions.
I hope the ongoing consultations between ASEAN Member States and China on the proposed Code of Conduct under the Framework of the 'Declaration on the [Conduct] of Parties in the South China Sea' will lead to increased mutual understanding between all parties.
Thank you again for the opportunity to visit your country and for your hospitality.
I am looking forward to the rest of my visit here in Viet Nam.
Off-the-Cuff on 22 May 2015