Mr. Eliott Harris Assistant Secretary-General for Economic Development and Chief Economist

Remarks
at the Organizational session of ECOSOC

Your Excellency, Ms. Marie Chatardová, President of ECOSOC
Your Excellency, Ms. Inga Rhonda King, Incoming President of ECOSOC
Excellencies,
Distinguished Delegates,
Ladies and gentlemen,

I am pleased to join you today as we mark the transition from one cycle of the Economic and Social Council (ECOSOC) to the next.

I would first like to congratulate Her Excellency Marie Chatardová and all the members of the ECOSOC Bureau. During your tenure, the Council intensified its work on promoting the realization of the 2030 Agenda, fostering debate and innovative thinking for our increasingly complex and multifaceted global challenges.

Under your skillful leadership, the 2018 session of the High-level Political Forum furthered discussions on gaps, challenges and solutions related to the implementation of the SDGs. And the STI Forum and the FFD Forum continued to accentuate the important role of science, technology and innovation and rallying towards securing the necessary financing, respectively, for the implementation of the Goals.

Allow me also to warmly welcome and congratulate the new President of ECOSOC, and a fellow Caribbean, Ambassador Inga Rhonda King. Your competence, your experience and your personal touch are a guarantee of success for the work of the Council. I also would like to welcome all the members of the incoming Bureau.

My Department looks forward to engaging with you on the priorities for your Presidency, and to discussing expanding new and identifying new avenues for DESA to provide support to the efforts of the Council in promoting the 2030 Agenda.

Excellencies,

I would also like to congratulate all Member States on adopting a resolution on the review of ECOSOC this week, which gives us further guidance and aims at strengthening ECOSOC to deliver on its core responsibilities vested to it by the Charter, which will also strengthen HLPF with focused and relevant contributions that the Council, its various forums and its subsidiary machinery will deliver.

And it is very timely as many impediments still exist, despite progress in many areas. We are all aware that inequalities remain unacceptably high across all main dimensions of human life. Therefore, it is of utmost importance that both ECOSOC and HLPF will discuss inequalities in the new cycle through their theme. Multifaceted nature of inequalities among and within countries remains a big challenge to implementation of the 2030 Agenda and all SDGs.

We know that next year, HLPF will meet both under the auspice of the Council and under the auspices of the GA. We will need high-quality inputs assess both the goals that are under discussion in HLPF under the auspices of the Council and the overall progress of the 2030 Agenda by the Heads of State and Government when they meet next September at the HLPF under the auspices of the GA. Therefore, a lot of work lies ahead, and I am looking forward to the guidance from the incoming President and the new Bureau.

Ladies and gentlemen,

We must come together, strengthen our venues of cooperation and stay focused on the SDGs, if we want to shift the world on to a sustainable and resilient path, where no one will be left behind.
Madame President,

I look forward to supporting you and the ECOSOC Bureau, as well as all the countries, in the exciting year ahead.

Thank you.

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