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Countries should not lose sight of sustainable development goals: PM Phúc to UN COVID-19 meeting

Update: December, 04/2020 - 11:45
Việt Nam's Prime Minister Nguyễn Xuân Phúc. — VNA/VNS Photo Thống Nhất

HÀ NỘI — The General Assembly of the United Nations held a special session on COVID-19 response from December 3 - 4 in New York. Prime Minister of Việt Nam Nguyễn Xuân Phúc has sent his remarks to the session.

Here is his comments in full:

“Ladies and gentlemen,

I commend the convening of the Special Session in Response to the Coronavirus disease (COVID-19) pandemic within the 75th Session of the UN General Assembly, as we are less than a month away from the end of 2020. The COVID-19 pandemic has made this year particularly challenging in many ways for all of us.

To win this battle against COVID-19 and to rebound in the next year, allow me to share some of my thoughts.

First, we need to uphold the central role of the UN, step up policy coordination, take collective action, and champion international cooperation and multilateral efforts in global governance.

As a non-permanent member of the UNSC for the 2020-21 term, Việt Nam reiterates its support for the UN Secretary General’s call for a global ceasefire, lifting of unilateral sanctions, and provision of humanitarian assistance in the fight against the COVID-19 pandemic.

Second, the interest of our people should form the core of all policies and actions. Our top priority should be to protect the lives and health of the people and ensure universal and affordable access to vaccines and treatments.

Third, we need to actively adapt to the ‘new normal’ for sustainable development. In addition to pandemic containment, we should simultaneously promote economic recovery, facilitate cross-border trade, investment and travel, and maintain supply chains of essential goods, food and medical equipment.

Countries should not lose sight of commitments with regard to the UN Agenda for Sustainable Development 2030 and climate action. In particular, developing countries should receive financial, commercial, and technical assistance in realising the UN SDGs as needed.

Ladies and gentlemen,

Việt Nam has managed to contain COVID-19, ensured social security, and restored growth. Let me take this opportunity to express my sincere thanks to the UN and international organisations for the meaningful support and cooperation extended to Việt Nam.

As the 2020 ASEAN Chair, Việt Nam has worked with fellow member states in putting forth initiatives in COVID-19 response such as the ASEAN COVID-19 Response Fund, the Regional Reserve of Medical Supplies, the Strategic Framework for Public Health Emergencies, and the ASEAN Centre for Public Health Emergencies and Emerging Diseases. ASEAN has also adopted the Comprehensive Recovery Framework and its Implementation Plan across the three Community pillars to support people and businesses in overcoming the impacts of the pandemic and return to normal life.

Việt Nam has proposed a range of ideas and initiatives within the UN framework and engaged in discussions with fellow members to adopt Resolutions and documents for enhancing international cooperation in COVID-19 response.

Guided by the spirit of sharing and caring, the Vietnamese Government, organisations, businesses and people have gifted domestically produced medical supplies to many countries hard-hit by the pandemic. We also shared our experience, and made donations to international funds on COVID-19, despite our financial constraints.

Ladies and gentlemen,

As we confront the greatest challenge since the birth of the UN, Việt Nam believes that the international community will emerge triumphant by harnessing the will and power of each nation, and strengthening our solidarity and cooperation. Together we can build a brighter future for each and every country and individual.

Việt Nam will contribute all it can to this noble endeavour.

Thank you.” — VNS


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