Rio de Janeiro, Brazil

21 June 2012

Secretary-General's remarks to event hosted by Turkey "From Rio to 2015 and Beyond : Charting a Course for a Fairer World" [as prepared for delivery]

Let me begin by thanking Turkey for organizing this event and for its impressive contribution to international cooperation … support to least developed countries … and strong voice and influence here in Rio.

I was in Istanbul last month where we highlighted Turkey’s progress on green transport and clean and renewable hydrogen energy.

Rio is about looking to the longer-term, thinking globally, and acting for our collective future.  It is about building greater cooperation and coherence.

At heart, Rio is about people. 

And, at heart, development is about building human capabilities and expanding human freedom.  This is the core message of our global, regional and national human development reports.

I want to thank all of you for keeping the spotlight on the human dimension.

In March, Istanbul hosted the first-ever Global Human Development Forum.

The conversation that began in Istanbul and that will continue here this morning is crucially important. 

How can we move from Rio to 2015 and beyond to chart progress for a fairer world?

How can we build a world that is both fairer not only for today, but for future generations?

How do we ensure – as the Istanbul Declaration states – “development that is with and for the people – equitable, inclusive and human rights-driven.”

To solve these questions, we need to recognize that equity and fairness are not luxuries that we pursue simply because we believe they are just. 

Greater equity is a necessity if we are to make progress on a wide range of issues – from building stronger economies and more cohesive societies to having a healthier planet. 

In other words, policies that promote equity and policies that promote sustainable development are two sides of the same coin. 

We are here in Rio to lay the foundation for the future we want.  A future of inclusive growth – growth that integrates the economic, social and environmental pillars.

As we look beyond Rio and beyond 2015, we need the full engagement of government leaders and policy makers, business and civil society representatives, women and young people. 

We need this support team for sustainability to help us truly transform our economies … to place our societies on a more just and equal footing … and to protect our resources and ecosystems on which our shared future depends.

Thank you for coming together to realize these goals.