Informal briefing on Germany’s presidency of the Group of 20 and the preparations for the Summit of the Group of 20

Statement by H.E. Peter Thomson, President of the 71st Session of the UN General Assembly, at the Informal briefing on Germany’s presidency of the Group of 20 and the preparations for the Summit of the Group of 20

6 February 2017


Excellency, Professor Lars-Hendrik Roeller, Chief Economic Advisor to the Chancellor, and German Sherpa to the G7 and G20,

Excellency, Ambassador Harald Braun, Permanent Representative of Germany to the United Nations,

Mr. Lenni  Montiel, Assistant-Secretary-General for Economic Development in the Department of Economic and Social Affairs.


Ladies and Gentlemen,

It a pleasure to welcome you to this briefing of the General Assembly on Germany’s priorities for its presidency of the G20, and on its preparations for the G20 Summit, to be held in Hamburg, on 7-8 July.

Today’s briefing builds on a number of practices that have emerged over recent years which aim to enhance the relationship between the General Assembly and other multilateral bodies and groupings, such as the G20.

Briefings such as today’s serve to share information among all United Nations Member States, build trust, help to break down institutional siloes, and strengthen relations between Member States.

I want to thank these three gentlemen: Professor Lars-Hendrik Roeller for making himself available for today’s briefing, Assistant-Secretary-General Montiel for bringing a UN perspective to our discussions, and Ambassador Braun and his Permanent Mission, for making this briefing possible.

Excellencies, ladies and gentlemen

Since its establishment, the G20 has played a pivotal role in promoting international cooperation in global economic and financial matters.

Particularly since the start of the global economic and financial crisis, nearly a decade ago, the work of the G20 has been vital to the guidance of the global economy. The reforms the G20 implemented, particularly in 2008 and 2009, were crucial to countering the worst impacts of the crisis, and to addressing many of the serious regulation gaps in the global economy.

Since then, the G20 has consolidated its position as a major global forum, as evidenced by the inclusion on its agenda of other major global challenges of the day, including climate change, taxation, migration and refugee flows, geopolitical conflicts, and, most recently, the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development.

Last year, the G20 launched the ‘G20 Action Plan on the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development’, through which the Group committed to further aligning its work with the 2030 Agenda to ensure that no one is left behind in efforts to eradicate poverty, and build an inclusive and sustainable future for all. The Action Plan aims to contribute to SDG implementation, including by supporting international development partnerships that engage governments, private sector, civil society, academia and international organizations.

The G20 also established the Green Finance Study Group to enhance the ability of the financial system to mobilize private finance towards green and environmentally sustainable investments.

Such initiatives are vital to our broader global efforts to mobilize the estimated annual US$5-7 trillion necessary each year to implement the Sustainable Development Goals

Germany has committed to continuing this work under its Presidency of the G20, as well as to build on other existing G20 work streams, and to advance their own priorities. These priorities are reflected in the document that has been circulated to all Member States.

Before we move on to Professor Roeller’s briefing and to hearing details on how Germany plans to achieve these outcomes, as well how its preparations for the July summit are progressing, I invite Ambassador Braun to make some introductory remarks.

Ambassador Braun, you have the floor.

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