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Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon

New York, 11 February 2016 - Secretary-General's message to Special Thematic Event on "Building Synergy and Coherence in the Implementation of the Istanbul Programme of Action in the Context of the 2030 Sustainable Development Agenda" [delivered by Mr. Gyan Chandra Acharya, High Representative for the Least Developed Countries, Landlocked Developig Countries and Small Island Developing States]


I thank the President of the General Assembly, Mr. Mogens Lykketoft, for organizing today’s meeting.

Five years ago, the international community came together in Istanbul to map out a collective vision for the development of Least Developed Countries.

The Mid-term Review of the Istanbul Programme of Action will take place in Antalya on
27 -29 May. It will consider progress on the Programme, against the backdrop of the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development, the Sendai Framework for Disaster Risk Reduction, the Addis Ababa Action Agenda, and the Paris Agreement on Climate Change.

These agreements mark a decisive turning point in global cooperation to address the greatest challenges we face. They will have a significant impact on Least Developed Countries, which will be a litmus test of our new approach to sustainability and our common responsibilities to the planet. It is vital that we build synergy and coherence among them.

Three agreements in particular will be fundamental to the progress of Least Developed Countries:

First, the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development brings all stakeholders under one umbrella to realize the shared aspirations of humanity. Its universal and integrated set of goals and targets address the root causes of poverty and the need for development that works for everyone. This is a priority for the Least Developed Countries. 

Second, the Addis Ababa Action Agenda addresses the full spectrum of financing for development issues, including resources, enabling environments, and systemic challenges. It includes concrete commitments on Official Development Assistance, investment and technology.

Third, the Paris Agreement on climate change epitomizes the will of the international community to save our people and the planet. We all owe our Least Developed neighbours gratitude for their leadership and vision during the negotiations. The international community listened and agreed to raise its ambition by lowering its target limit to below 2’Celcius.

Looking ahead, the importance of building resilience against shocks and crises – which is critical to Least Developed Countries – will be a theme of the first World Humanitarian Summit which will be convened on May 23-24 in Istanbul, Turkey. The Summit will consider ways to move from delivering aid to ending need, which means strengthening local leadership and capacity in the most vulnerable countries.

The Mid-term Review will offer a platform to launch concrete measures, initiatives and partnerships, to support the implementation of the Istanbul Programme of Action against the backdrop of these important new approaches. 

I urge your commitment at the highest level and look forward to its success. Thank you.


Statements on 11 February 2016