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Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon

Off-the-Cuff

Press Conference by the Secretary-General

Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, 21 June 2012

SG: Ladies and Gentlemen, muito obrigado.

I wanted to meet the Brazilian press, believing that it would be only fair for the Brazilian people to know how much contribution Brazil has been making to the success of the Rio+20 meeting on sustainable development.

Not only as a host Government, but also as an important member of the United Nations, Brazil has been making a great contribution and [demonstrating] leadership.

I’m very much encouraged and satisfied with the current level of the negotiations process and the hospitality which has been provided through all members of the delegations.

We are going to adopt tomorrow afternoon the outcome document as a result of the negotiations here. I am very much grateful for seminal role that Brazil has been making, and the leadership of President Dilma Rousseff and the whole team. And this is an outcome document containing very broad, but ambitious and practical, packages for sustainable development.

Ensuring the three pillars of our goals: social equity, economic development and environmental sustainability; these are three dimensions which we want to achieve and this outcome document contains many recommendations, good recommendations. What is important at this time is to implement [them].

Now is a time to implement all these recommendations which should be adopted by the world leaders. Twenty years ago, here in Rio, world leaders set us towards sustainable development.

Now much strengthened, after twenty years, the world leaders have committed themselves to put us and our succeeding generation on a much better and stronger, more sustainable path for all prosperity and humanity so that all the people can live [in] dignity, peace and harmony.

I am very committed, as the Secretary-General, to work together with the Member States to help implement these recommendations to shape the world we want. Muito obrigado.

Q.: Mr. Secretary-General, what will be the next practical and concrete measures regarding those commitments made in this Conference?

SG: Our Member States have agreed to establish universal sustainable development goals, and this should build upon the successes of the Millennium Development Goals. At the same time, we need to accelerate the implementation of the Millennium Development Goals until 2015, which will be succeeded by sustainable development goals. We have to agree on sustainable development goals. An intergovernmental panel is going to be established with the committee of experts. And I’m also going to establish a high-level panel with eminent persons to work together. All this will be discussed in the intergovernmental panel. There are other good recommendations to strengthen…

Q: Have you chosen those persons already?

SG.: That has to be decided by the Member States, and for my part I have already appointed three co-chairs; but for the composition of all the eminent [panel] process, I have to discuss later on. After the Rio+20 Summit is over, I will try to announce it.

Q: Different groups from different parts of society talk about failure, what can you say to them? And I just want to add to this question.  There are some groups that want to take off their signatures of the [outcome] document, so…

SG: I believe this is a great success for the international community. I firmly believe as the Secretary-General of the United Nations, this is a great success and a good document which can put us all towards greater sustainability and one can be, one can have some different views, but as far as United Nations is concerned. And I am very much grateful for such a visionary leadership of President Dilma Rousseff and the whole team, which has been leading these negotiations to such a great success.

We need to be very much grateful to the Brazilian people and Government. Brazil has an enormous potential in leading this campaign. Brazil has a standing as one of the rising countries, emerging states with a lot of potential. These should be fully utilized, now that Brazilian diplomacy has fully demonstrated their capacity to bring this negotiation towards a successful conclusion.

Thank you very much, muito obrigado.

Q: Is it as important as 92?

SG: The 1992 Rio Earth Summit has made a great visionary agenda of 21. The world has consumed the resources to prosperity without realizing that our planet Earth is all limited.

We have to be very much conscious of this limit, which our planet Earth has. We have to fully utilize our resources, but at the same time we have to make everything [in a] sustainable way, socially, economically and environmentally.

That is what Member States have agreed on, [in] 26 areas. This is a very good document; this is the vision on which we can build our dreams, our visions and it is important that the Member States are united and work together. And I thank you at this time, all civil society for their contribution. I met the representatives of nine major groups of civil society. They have been making great contributions, and I ask them to continuously engage in this important implementation process.

This is not the end of our journey. This is just the beginning of our journey towards greater sustainability. And I am happy and satisfied with what we have achieved under the leadership of Brazil and [its] people. Thank you very much.