Our meeting today gives us a golden opportunity to reflect on our common concerns about the world economy—a world economy in crisis.
The pressures of climate change, the skyrocketing world price of oil and the food crisis have had a crushing effect on the economies of developing nations.
The collapse of the WTO talks in Geneva has only worsened the situation. It has made it even more difficult for developing countries to attain their Millennium Development Goals by 2015.
This dire situation can have a divisive effect. Preoccupied with their own economic troubles, nations can become less inclined to accommodate their development partners.
We in the Group of 77 are called upon to serve as a driving force for unity within the South. We are also called upon to build a bridge of trust between the North and the South. We must demonstrate our full commitment to partnership.
In multilateral forums on development, we must be creative in devising practical solutions to the problems of the world economy. Instead of merely reacting to the proposals of our development partners, we must launch our own bold and practical initiatives.
These are the kind of initiatives that are endorsed in the Development Platform of the South.
First articulated at the 2005 South Summit in Doha, the Platform will be concluded in 2009. As a framework of development options, it will stimulate economic growth in the South.
It will facilitate the integration of developing countries into the global economy and the attainment of our MDGs.
At the same time, our initiatives should be aimed at four goals.
First, the prosperity agenda must given top priority in international forums. All nations must support a second Green Revolution.
Second, the global economic architecture must be redesigned to give more help to developing countries. The international financial, economic and trading systems should be made more equitable and better attuned to the needs of developing countries.
Third, development strategies must take into account environmental concerns. Let us work for the advancement of the Bali Roadmap all the way to Copenhagen through Poznan. And let us do all we can to contribute to the reduction of emissions even before a new post-Kyoto climate regime is concluded.
Fourth, we must explore ways to strengthen South-South and Triangular cooperation. Let us make the most of the 2009 Conference on South-South Cooperation.
The achievement of these goals will galvanize the South. It will help us address the global economic crisis and bring us closer to our MDG targets.
I thank you.