Following is UN Secretary-General António Guterres’ message for the seventieth anniversary of the Economic Commission for Europe, in Geneva today:
I am pleased to send greetings on the occasion of the seventieth anniversary of the United Nations Economic Commission for Europe.
After the horrors of the Second World War, the fledgling United Nations deemed pan-European economic integration essential for maintaining peace. Over the subsequent seven decades, even at times of the most acute political divide, this first United Nations regional commission has helped build bridges and provide a unique platform for Member States to convene and cooperate. This remarkable cooperation helped to promote trade, freedom of movement and economic growth, protect the environment, increase consumer safety and improve social cohesion and human well-being.
To successfully implement the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development and the Paris Agreement on climate change, we will need more economic integration and cooperation among countries. The Economic Commission for Europe has an important role to play. On the occasion of this seventieth anniversary celebration, I encourage all Economic Commission for Europe Member States and stakeholders to continue to connect countries, drive progress and deliver positive results for the citizens of Europe and the world.
I wish you a productive seventieth-anniversary meeting.