Assistant Foreign Minister Ma Zhaoxu Expounds China's Six Expectations for the Rio+20 Summit
2012-06-17 16:00

On June 16, 2012, Assistant Foreign Minister Ma Zhaoxu delivered a speech at a China-focused sideline event for the United Nations Conference on Sustainable Development (also known as the "Rio+20" Summit), in which he expounded China's six expectations for the conference and announced the news that Chinese Premier Wen Jiabao would attend the conference.

Ma said that the forthcoming "Rio+20" Summit is an important event held in the new historical period. China attaches great importance to the summit and will work with other parties for comprehensive, positive and pragmatic results of the summit. To this end, Chinese Premier Wen Jiabao will attend the summit and deliver an important speech.

He said that sustainable development is a matter concerning the future generations of all countries. Strengthening international cooperation and seeking common prosperity is the only way to sustainable development. At the new historical starting point, the world should demonstrate political will and wisdom and push for new progress in sustainable development. To this end, the Chinese side has the following six expectations for the conference:

First, maintaining the principle of "common but differentiated responsibilities". The principle is one of the important achievements of the United Nations Conference on Environment and Development (UNCED) in 1992 and the guideline for international development cooperation. Practice has proved that the international cooperation for sustainable development will achieve progress only when the principle is adhered to; or such international cooperation cannot continue.

Second, making overall arrangements for balanced and coordinated development of economy, society and environmental protection. As the three pillars of sustainable development, none of them should be neglected. The summit should, based on the goals of the summit, make overall arrangements for economic, social, and environmental factors and promote the comprehensive, balanced, coordinated and sustainable development of mankind.

Third, opening up broad prospects for green economy. Green economy is an important means to achieving sustainable development and has a positive meaning for poverty eradication and economic restructuring. However, it comes with risks and challenges as well. The Chinese side hopes that the summit could promote international cooperation for green economy and effectively address the concerns of developing countries.

Fourth, strengthening the building of sustainable development mechanism. Such a framework should contribute to promoting the balanced and coordinated development of economy, society and environmental protection, improving the voice and inheritance rights of developing countries, resolving the practical difficulties of developing countries in capital, technology and capacity-building, and giving full play to the central role of the United Nations.

Fifth, providing substantial support and assistance for developing countries. Developing countries are a weak link in the chain of sustainable development. The summit should take an action-oriented and pragmatic attitude, formulate specific implementation plan, provide developing countries with financial assistance, debt relief and technology transfer, and enhance their capacity building.

Sixth, initiating the process for developing sustainable development goals. The summit should identify guidelines for the setting of sustainable development goals and initiate a government-led process. At the same time, the goals should be an effective supplement to the UN Millennium Development Goals. The international community should implement the Millennium Development Goals in a steadfast and full-fledged manner.

Ma concluded that China, as a responsible developing country, is actively promoting international cooperation for sustainable development. China has fully honored the commitments to the international community and has made unremitting efforts to promote global sustainable development. China will participate in the conference process in a positive and constructive attitude and make its due contribute to the success of the summit.

The sideline event is the opening ceremony for China-focused sideline events ahead of the "Rio+20" Summit. UN Under-Secretary-General and Secretary-General of the Conference Sha Zukang and Deputy Director of China's National Development and Reform Commission Du Ying also attended and addressed the ceremony.

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