Mr. Wu Hongbo, Under-Secretary-General


Under-Secretary-General for Economic and Social Affairs

Mr. Wu Hongbo was appointed United Nations Under-Secretary-General for Economic and Social Affairs on 1 August 2012. Prior to his appointment, Mr. Wu served as Ambassador Extraordinary and Plenipotentiary of the People’s Republic of China to the Federal Republic of Germany. Among his various diplomatic assignments, Mr. Wu served as China’s Ambassador to the Philippines.

Mr. Wu was extensively engaged previously in a broad range of social and economic issues relating to Hong Kong SAR (Special Administrative Region) and Macao SAR, having served as Director and Director-General of the Department of Hong Kong, Macao and Taiwan Affairs of the Chinese Ministry of Foreign Affairs and China’s Chief Representative of Sino-British Joint Liaison Group. He was a leading official responsible for handling Hong Kong SAR’s ties with over 30 international organizations and the continued application of over 200 international conventions to Hong Kong SAR.

Mr. Wu brings to DESA his outstanding policy-making experience and problem-solving skills, as well as rich and extensive experience with multilateral organizations and international conferences. As Director-General and later Assistant Minister of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of China, Mr. Wu worked with the Chinese inter-agency coordination mechanism for the Boao Forum for Asia, the Chinese working group for the implementation mechanism of the UN conventions on environment and development, and the Chinese inter-ministry coordination mechanism for the World Economic Forum Annual Meeting of the New Champions.

As Under-Secretary-General for Economic and Social Affairs, Mr. Wu guides UN Secretariat support for the follow-up processes of the Rio+20 Conference, including the UN General Assembly Open Working Group on Sustainable Development Goals, the Intergovernmental Committee of Experts on Sustainable Development Financing, and the High-level Political Forum on Sustainable Development. He has overseen the substantive services to a number of intergovernmental processes, including the General Assembly Special Event on MDGs, the intergovernmental deliberations on the post-2015 development agenda, the General Assembly High-level Meeting on Persons with Disability, the High-level Dialogue on Migration and Development, as well as the annual meetings of the Second and Third Committees of the General Assembly, the meetings of the Economic and Social Council, including its Development Cooperation Forum, and the work of the functional commissions of ECOSOC.

In addition to intergovernmental processes, Mr. Wu oversees DESA’s policy analysis and capacity development work. He also serves as the Convenor of the Executive Committee on Economic and Social Affairs, and advises the United Nations Secretary-General on all development-related issues, including climate change, internet governance, and financing for development.

Mr. Wu recently served as the Secretary-General of the third International Conference on Small Island Developing States and is currently serving as the Secretary-General of the third International Conference on Financing for Development.

Mr. Wu graduated from Beijing Foreign Studies University and pursued his postgraduate studies at Victoria University of Wellington in New Zealand. He was born in May 1952 in Shandong, China. Mr. Wu is married with a daughter.

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January 2015: Interview

January 2014: Interview

January 2013: Interview

October 2012: Interview