New York

26 September 2013

Secretary-General's remarks to Thirty-Seventh Annual Meeting of Ministers for Foreign Affairs of the Group of 77

I am pleased to have the chance to meet with you at the start of the new General Assembly session.

I commend the distinguished Minister of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation, Ratu Inoke Kubuabola of Fiji, as well as Ambassador Peter Thomson, on Fiji’s leadership of the Group of 77 and China this year. 

We are meeting at a transformative time. This is an era of unmatched technological progress, growing public awareness and unprecedented global networking.

But progress has not benefited everyone equally.

The United Nations shares your conviction that we must create a world where all people have opportunities to build their future.

This is not a “G-77 issue” or a “developing countries’ agenda”. This is a global imperative. The United Nations and all of its member States have an interest in creating a more just and equitable world.

When we understand that we are interconnected, we realize that we need to join forces against our common problems. Multilateralism is the key to unlock the challenges of the 21st century. The Group of 77 can help the United Nations effectively use multilateralism as a force for change. 

The G77 has pushed poverty eradication up on the global agenda. You have shown the power of South-South cooperation to drive economic growth.  You are a strong voice for billions of people who are poor, hungry and vulnerable.

The G77 can make or break negotiations on contentious issues.

This is especially critical now as we make a final push to reach the Millennium Development Goals – and shape a vision for the post-2015 agenda.

The G77 and China have been working hard to achieve progress on both fronts. I thank you for your strong support – and I urge you to do more now. Stay engaged. Aim high. Hold other countries to their promises. And help us create a universal development agenda organized around a new global partnership for development, based on equity, cooperation and accountability with firm roots in human rights. 

I will fully support the G77 in protecting the interests of developing countries.

When the United Nations is stronger, more flexible and more agile, we can better serve you. That is why I ask you to support my various management reforms. They are aimed at enabling us to support your countries and peoples.

Let us work together with His Excellency General Assembly President Ashe to make the most of this important Assembly session and prepare for even greater success in 2015.

Thank you very much.