It gives me great pleasure to send a word of thanks and support to the participants in this important roundtable. I thank the Government of Belgium for hosting it, and commend the Government of the Central African Republic for designing a comprehensive Poverty Reduction Strategy as the focus of your deliberations. I would also like to recognize the significant efforts of Ambassador Jan Grauls, Chair of the Central African Republic configuration of the Peacebuilding Commission, as well as the World Bank, the United Nations Development Programme and the African Development Bank, in supporting the smooth organization of this timely event.
This roundtable is a logical follow-up to the five-year review of the Peacebuilding Commission and last September's High-Level Event on Addressing Peacebuilding and Development Challenges in the Central African Republic. It offers a valuable opportunity for partners to strengthen their commitment to support the Government's efforts to deliver concrete and meaningful improvements in the lives of the country's people.
The Central African Republic has achieved significant progress in consolidating peace, following the conclusion of the Inclusive Political Dialogue in December 2008. However, daunting challenges remain. The United Nations is determined to continue working in partnership with the Government and people of the Central African Republic to gain traction in key areas, including the consolidation of the political framework and democratic governance, the restoration of state authority throughout the national territory, the completion of the disarmament, demobilization and reintegration process, the reform of the security sector, and the strengthening of the rule of law and respect for human rights, in particular amongst vulnerable populations. Delivering results in these areas is critical to enhancing security and political stability, which are pre-requisites for recovery and sustainable socio-economic development.
Looking ahead, the United Nations is working in an integrated manner, striving to make a difference, under the UN Peace building and Development Assistance Framework (UNDAF+). The wider international community, including the partners gathered in Brussels today, must also do its part. I therefore appeal for your strong, generous and sustainable commitment to continue supporting the Government and people of the Central African Republic in their quest for peace. Please accept my best wishes for a successful roundtable.