United Nations Secretary-General António Guterres arrived in Beijing from New York on the evening of Thursday, 25 April.
On Friday morning, he spoke at the opening ceremony of the second Belt and Road Forum for International Cooperation.
In his remarks, the Secretary-General said that this is a time of uncertainty and unease, but that the choices we make now are essential to put us on a low-carbon growth path that is sustainable and inclusive and will build resilience. (See Press Release SG/SM/19556.)
The Secretary-General said that the world will benefit from a Belt and Road Initiative that accelerates efforts to achieve the Sustainable Development Goals and stressed that the world needs to take profit of the Initiative to help close the significant financing gaps for achieving the Sustainable Development Goals.
The Secretary-General noted that United Nations country teams will work to support the Member States in capacity- and government-building and in achieving harmonious and sustainable integration of Belt and Road projects in their own economies and societies in accordance with national development plans anchored in the 2030 Sustainable Development Agenda.
On the side‑lines of the Forum, the Secretary-General met with President Filipe Jacinto Nyusi of Mozambique. The Secretary-General expressed his solidarity with the people and Government in the wake of Cyclone Idai and the more recent Cyclone Kenneth. The Secretary-General pledged the United Nations support for relief efforts.
The Secretary-General also met with the President of Uzbekistan, Shavkat Mirziyoyev.
In the afternoon, the Secretary-General also met with Chinese President Xi Jinping, Premier of the State Council Li Keqiang and State Councilor and Foreign Minister Wang Yi.
During his meeting with the President, the Secretary-General expressed his appreciation for China’s support for the United Nations work, including through its contributions to peacekeeping, South-South cooperation, United Nations reform and leadership on climate change. He also congratulated President Xi on the upcoming seventieth anniversary of the People’s Republic of China this year, noting that 2019 marks 40 years of the United Nationss presence in the country. The Secretary-General and the President also discussed the Belt and Road Initiative’s potential to bolster development and reduce poverty in line with the 2030 Sustainable Development Agenda.
On Friday evening, the Secretary-General attended the welcoming ceremony for the Belt and Road Forum, followed by a welcoming dinner and gala performance.
On Saturday, 27 April, the Secretary-General participated in leaders’ round table sessions as part of the Belt and Road Forum.
He delivered the keynote speech at a session on the topic of promoting green and sustainable development to implement the 2030 Agenda. He noted that addressing the deepening climate crisis requires action that is rooted in solutions that are sustainable and aligned with the Paris Agreement and the 2030 Agenda. The Secretary-General stressed that the green economy is the future as it fosters prosperity, creates decent work, addresses root causes of conflict and contributes to the full enjoyment of all human rights – civil, politic, economic, social and cultural. (See Press Release SG/SM/19557.)
Before departing for New York, the Secretary-General held a meeting and attended a dinner hosted by Chinese Vice‑Premier Han Zheng.
The Secretary-General arrived back in New York late on Saturday evening.