Activities of Secretary-General in Peru, Including Stopover in Panama, 2-3 December

4 December 2013

Activities of Secretary-General in Peru, Including Stopover in Panama, 2-3 December

United Nations Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon and Madam Ban Soon-taek arrived in the Peruvian capital, Lima, on Monday morning, 2 December.

The Secretary-General spoke at the opening of the fifteenth General Conference of the United Nations Industrial Development Organization (UNIDO).

In his remarks, he noted that Member States were gathered to adopt the second Lima Declaration, following the adoption of the first one nearly 40 years ago.  This new framework document, he said, would create the foundation for the coming decades of UNIDO’s important work as the central agency in the United Nations for all matters related to industrialization.  The Secretary-General underlined the importance of industry and the private sector in steering the human family on a safer, more prosperous and sustainable path.  (See Press Release SG/SM/15509.)

The Secretary-General then met with Peruvian President Ollanta Humala Tasso.

Speaking at a press conference — together with Mr. Humala and UNIDO Director General Li Yong — the Secretary-General said that he and the Peruvian leader discussed the country’s significant contributions to the United Nations, including peacekeeping, disarmament, climate change and sustainable development.

The Secretary-General also underscored the crucial role of Peru, as the host of the twentieth Conference of Parties to the United Nations Climate Change Convention, in addressing the threat of climate change.

Following a lunch hosted by Mr. Humala, the Secretary-General attended the adoption of the Lima Declaration, calling it an “encouraging milestone”, which “points the world more firmly in the direction of inclusive and sustainable development”.  (See Press Release SG/SM/15513.)

He then met with Dirk Niebel, the Federal Minister for Economic Cooperation and Development of Germany.

The Secretary-General participated in a town hall meeting with United Nations staff in Peru and took a tour of the Larco Museum, which showcases artifacts providing an overview of 3,000 years of Peruvian pre-Columbian history.

The Secretary-General ended his day with a dinner hosted by Mr. Humala.

The following morning, Tuesday, 3 December, the Secretary-General was interviewed by the daily Peruvian newspaper, La Republica.

He then visited a United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) project in the El Agustino district of Lima, which is situated next to a major river and has been vulnerable to the effects of climate change, including flooding, soil erosion and landslides.

The project seeks to restore environmentally degraded land to a productive state and bolster resilience to climate change by planting tara trees, a species native to the area.

Together with Peruvian Environment Minister Manuel Pulgar-Vidal, the Secretary-General planted a tara tree before speaking to the press.

The Secretary-General noted that the project is a good example of how communities can contribute in combating climate change.  In particular, he spotlighted the efforts of women in the community, praising their passion, creativity and ingenuity.

Before departing Peru, the Secretary-General met with former Secretary-General Javier Perez de Cuellar.

At his press conference the previous day, the Secretary-General had told reporters that he deeply values Peru and that he is especially proud to follow the footsteps of a great son of the country, referring to Perez de Cuellar.

The Secretary-General transited through Panama, where he held talks with the country’s Foreign Minister, Fernando Núñez Fábrega.  They discussed Panama’s economic development, the implications of the expansion of the Panama Canal, and various security issues on the United Nations agenda.

The Secretary-General and Madam Ban arrived in New York late in the evening on Tuesday, 3 December.

For information media. Not an official record.