Baku, Azerbaijan

28 October 2014

Secretary-General's video message for the 1st Global Forum on Youth Policies

Your Excellency Mr. Azad Rahimov, Minister of Youth and Sport of the Republic of Azerbaijan, Excellencies, Ladies and Gentlemen,

It is a pleasure to address the Global Forum on Youth Policies.

I thank the Government of Azerbaijan for generously hosting this timely gathering, which takes place as the world is shaping a new development agenda and coincides with the 20th anniversary of the World Programme of Action for Youth

I would also like to thank the office of my first ever Envoy on Youth, as well as UNDP, UNESCO, the Council of Europe and the Ministry of Youth and Sport in Azerbaijan.

Empowering young people is one of my top priorities. Young people are the leaders of tomorrow. But we need to listen to them carefully today.

When young people speak up and identify the policies that matter to them, governments, businesses and civil society can all benefit.

I call on all governments to help young people participate more fully in civic and public life, and in making decisions that will build a better world.

I encourage young people to raise their voices loud and clear so that they are heard not just at this forum.

To the many government ministers, youth leaders, experts and participants at this impressive gathering, I have one message: the United Nations is ready to work with you.

I wish you all a productive forum.

Çox sag ol [CHO-SAG-OLUN] thank you.