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PM calls for joint efforts for world of sustainable development

Prime Minister Nguyen Xuan Phuc has addressed the High-level General Debate of the 73rd Session of the UN General Assembly, calling on countries to continue highlighting the role of the United Nations and join hands for a world of peace, equality and sustainable development.

At the general debate in New York city, the US, on September 27 afternoon (local time), PM Phuc, on behalf of the Government and people of Vietnam, expressed his sincere thanks to the General Assembly for the minute of silence in memory of Vietnamese President Tran Dai Quang, who recently passed away.

Taking place from September 25 to October 1, the event is themed “Making the United Nations Relevant to All People: Global Leadership and Shared Responsibilities for Peaceful, Equitable and Sustainable Societies.” It attracted leaders from more than 100 countries.

In his speech, the PM suggested that a concept of "dual responsibility" be universally upheld. Each nation shall take additional responsibility for addressing global issues, and each individual shall take additional responsibility as a global citizen. Against this backdrop, the role of the UN has become all the more important in the creation of new foundations to more effectively address global challenges.

He said “The UN has truly become a symbol of global solidarity, the embodiment of humanity and progress, and where our aspiration to strive for a world of peace, prosperity and equality, are realised.”

Vietnam strongly supports the central role of the UN in the multilateral international system, and has actively joined efforts to realise the fundamental cooperation pillars of the United Nations: the maintenance of global peace and security, development cooperation, and the protection and promotion of human rights, he added.

The Government leader noted that once a poor, underdeveloped and food-deficit country, Vietnam has recorded average annual GDP growth of over 6 percent over the last 20 years to become among the world's largest food exporters. Since 2010, it has become a middle-income developing country.

Vietnam enjoys free trading relations with nearly 60 major countries and partners in the world as a result of its membership of 16 Free Trade Agreements (FTAs), some of which are in the final stage of negotiations.

It successfully hosted the 2017 APEC Year, the 132nd Inter-Parliamentary Union Assembly, the 2018 World Economic Forum on ASEAN, and the 6th Greater Mekong Sub-region Cooperation Summit. It is working towards the 2025 Vision for the ASEAN Community, which aims to strengthen ASEAN centrality in the evolving regional architecture.

Vietnam is one of the few countries having accomplished the UN’s Millennium Development Goals 2015 ahead of schedule, particularly on poverty reduction.

PM Phuc also affirmed that: “It is our consistent policy to uphold the UN Charter and the fundamental principles of international law in the settlement of international disputes through peaceful means, including in the South China Sea, which should be addressed on the basis of the 1982 UN Convention on the Law of the Sea (UNCLOS) and the safeguard of maritime security and safety and freedom of navigation and over-flight.”

The PM mentioned new opportunities for the unprecedented economic growth in the context of the scientific and technological breakthroughs as well as globalisation, while stressing that the world is facing new and immense obstacles.

Power politics, the use or threat of force and the rise of unilateral measures still threaten global peace and stability, while injustice, inequality, climate change, pollution and poverty persist, he said.

“No single nation can singlehandedly address the enormous global challenges,” he said, stressing that joint efforts and collaboration of all nations are needed. 

The international community should uphold “dual responsibility” in which each nation and individual should take additional responsibility for addressing global issues.

Laying stress on the important role of the United Nations in the creation of new foundations to address global challenges in an effective manner, PM Phuc said that countries worldwide must join hands for a world of peace, equality and sustainable development.

He expressed his hope that major powers and developed countries will take meaningful actions, and play an exemplary role in maintaining peace and fostering development. “The United Nations General Assembly should be the heart of cooperation among countries and peoples for peace, equality and sustainable development”, he said.

He also called for the lifting of the unilateral embargo on Cuba so that it may equitably and fairly participate in economic and trading relations.

In that spirit, PM Phuc said that the UN should engage in strong and comprehensive reforms towards improving its effectiveness, democracy and transparency to better fulfill its indispensable role in leading efforts to address global challenges.

Also, he suggested the UN to strengthen cooperation with regions, particularly the UN-ASEAN High-level Cooperation mechanism, highlighting the UN more within ASEAN, and ASEAN more within the UN.

As Vietnam has submitted its candidacy for non-permanent membership of the UN Security Council for the 2020-2021 term, he thanked the 53 countries of the Asia-Pacific for endorsing Vietnam as the sole candidate of the region. On behalf of the Vietnamese Government and people, he wished to receive support of all member states.

“Vietnam commits to being an active and responsible member of the international community and the United Nations”, he said.