Following are the closing remarks of UN Deputy Secretary-General Amina Mohammed, as prepared for delivery, at the closing ceremony of the thirty-seventh session of the Economic Commission for Latin America and the Caribbean (ECLAC) in Havana, Cuba, today:
It is an honour for me to take part in this closing ceremony. I want to thank all of you and once again commend my dear sister and friend, Alicia Bárcena, for her incredible leadership and commitment to the region and the globe.
On Tuesday, the Secretary-General rightly praised ECLAC’s pioneering role in pushing for a more inclusive understanding of development — going beyond income as the litmus test for success. This week has proven once again that ECLAC has truly established itself as a regional think tank and forum for policy discussion — placing equality at the centre of the development debate and integrating the three pillars of development in its analytical framework.
I would like to echo the Secretary-General’s appreciation — ECLAC has always been at the forefront of pushing for a more inclusive understanding of development. Again and again you have insisted that we need a new development cooperation paradigm, in line with the spirit of the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development. This is a principle which I share fully and mean to promote in operationalizing the reform of the United Nations development system.
This session has reinforced ECLAC’s long tradition of open, inclusive and sustained dialogue with its member countries. I thank you most especially for your strong commitment to implementation of the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development and tackling challenges that transcend national borders, such as economic challenges, the impact of climate change, migration and illicit financial flows, and for forging the necessary partnerships to resolve them.
Minister [for Foreign Trade and Foreign Investment Rodrigo] Malmierca [Díaz], I cannot conclude without congratulating Cuba on taking the chairmanship of ECLAC, and thanking you and the ministers accompanying us in this week’s activities for your invaluable support and warm welcome for the thirty-seventh session of the Economic Commission for Latin America and the Caribbean here in Havana. We are truly inspired.
My best wishes for the two-year work you begin today, my congratulations to ECLAC on its anniversary and felicitations to all the colleagues at the Commission who put forth their best efforts to drive inclusive development and just globalization. I have every confidence that this meeting will mark an important milestone in the region towards the realization of the 2030 Agenda in the lives of the people of ECLAC. You can count on the Secretary-General and the United Nations system to be at your side in this noble and just cause.