Toronto, Canada, 26 June 2010 - Read-out of Secretary-General's remarks at the G-20 working dinner in TorontoUN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon attended the G-20 working dinner in Toronto on Saturday, 26 June 2010. He told the other leaders: “In London and in Pittsburgh, we came together to avert a global depression. We succeeded. You showed great leadership. Our challenge now is different.”
He said he understood concerns about rising budget deficits and public debt, and that the severe fiscal problems faced by some countries required urgent action. But he said: “Let me emphasize this evening that, under any circumstances we must not balance budgets on the backs of the world's poorest people.”
He said the UN's Global Pulse monitoring system showed that the poor and vulnerable need help to make ends meet, now more than ever.
He said we cannot depend on consumption-led recovery alone but also need to mobilize investments to ensure today's recovery and tomorrow's future growth. He identified three areas of high returns.
First, he said there should be investment in agriculture and other sectors as described in the Global Jobs Pact, where the poor are eager and able to work and create value. Fully funding the L'Aquila Initiative not only fights hunger but also promotes economic recovery, he said.
Second, there should be investment in green recovery. That would create jobs, catalyze growth in construction, manufacturing and renewable energy sectors, lower oil prices, help address food insecurity, and support public infrastructure in communities around the world. It would also help dramatically reduce greenhouse gas emissions over the coming decades. He said, “Specifically this year we must make concrete progress on delivering the $30 billion in fast-start funding for mitigation and adaptation efforts in developing countries.”
Third, he said there should be investment in health and health systems. Healthy populations, particularly women and children can leverage countries out of poverty. He said he welcomed the leadership and new commitments of the G8 and developing countries on women's and children's health. He also welcomed the broad support that is coalescing around the Joint Action Plan for Women's and Children's Health.
He said now was the time to unite behind this plan with concrete commitments by all. He said that according to the world's experts who have been mobilized to identify the resources necessary to achieve the Joint Action Plan, $15 billion is needed immediately for the 49 least developed countries, rising to $40-45 billion per year by 2015.
“Let us be determined to turn these three areas of high-return investments into a reality. Tomorrow, the G-20 can make clear its intention to do so,” the Secretary-General said.
He said that in September, at the Millennium Development Goals Summit at the United Nations, the world's leaders together could turn these commitments into a bold, detailed and accountable plan of action to achieve those Goals.
Statements on 26 June 2010