Geneva, Switzerland

26 April 2017

Secretary-General's message on the 70th Anniversary of the Economic Commission for Europe

I am pleased to send greetings on the occasion of the 70th anniversary of the United Nations Economic Commission for Europe. 

After the horrors of the Second World War, the fledgling United Nations deemed pan-European economic integration essential for maintaining peace.  Over the subsequent seven decades, even at times of the most acute political divide, this first United Nations Regional Commission has helped build bridges and provide a unique platform for Member States to convene and cooperate.  This remarkable cooperation helped to promote trade, freedom of movement and economic growth, protect the environment, increase consumer safety and improve social cohesion and human well-being.  
To successfully implement the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development and the Paris Agreement on climate change, we will need more economic integration and cooperation among countries.  The UNECE has an important role to play.  On the occasion of this 70th anniversary celebration, I encourage all UNECE Member States and stakeholders to continue to connect countries, drive progress and deliver positive results for the citizens of Europe and the world.
I wish you a productive 70th anniversary meeting.