Friday, 08 October 2021
- At the outset, my delegation wishes to congratulate you and other members of the Bureau on your election to the Second Committee and assures you our full support and cooperation.
- My delegation aligns itself with the statements made by the distinguished representatives of Brunei Darussalam, Guinea, Malawi and Kazakhstan on behalf of ASEAN, the Group of 77 and China, LDCs and LLDCs respectively.
- This is another year during which we are confronted with unprecedented global challenges. Our vulnerability, inequality, and decade-long economic and social progress towards achieving the SDGs have all been worsened by the Covid-19 pandemic. The most vulnerable, especially countries in special situations are worst hit as poverty and hunger are on the rise, increasing debt, declining tourism, investment, and trade, all of which resulted in huge revenue losses.
- In addition to global health crisis, climate change, natural disasters, and rising income inequality within and among countries have all threatened to cause negative impact on SDGs implementation, particularly for the least developed and developing countries that heavily rely on international trade to drive inclusive economic growth and poverty eradication, as well as an important source of support for advancing their national development.
- The Lao PDR, like other countries in special situations, is doing its utmost to cushion the impacts resulted by the pandemic and maintain the progress made thus far on SDGs implementation while simultaneously working towards a smooth graduation from LDC status in the coming years. In its 2021 triennial review, the Committee for Development Policy (CDP) recommended that the Lao PDR met the thresholds for the LDC graduation for the second time, by meeting all three criteria for graduation (GNI, HAI and EVI). However, as the country has been heavily impacted by COVID19 pandemic, it is also recommended that extended preparatory period of five years with careful monitoring and analysis be put in place with continued specific smooth transition support measures. In addition, the pandemic has brought about immediate and long-term impacts on our socio-economic development and most crucially on people’s livelihood, especially by threatening employment opportunities, income generation, education, health and social protection, among others. This global health crisis has undoubtedly led to overall decline of economic growth and slowdown progress towards SDGs implementation and seriously hindered LDC graduation efforts.
- In this light, it is more critical than ever for the international community to ensure a coordinated global response based on unity, solidarity, and a renewed commitment to multilateralism in order to jointly contain the pandemic and address its negative consequences while also adopting a holistic approach to build back better in the new normal. Toward this end, we require a comprehensive social-economic impact assessment of COVID-19, continued technical and financial assistance from development partners, UN system, international financial institutions and other stakeholders to assist national governments in addressing the impacts of this global crisis, safeguarding our hard-earned progress, and preparing better for future crises.
- I wish to conclude by reiterating the Lao PDR’s firm commitment to the work of the United Nations and we hope to do more. In this spirit, being both an LDC and Landlocked, the Lao PDR has presented for the very first time, its candidacy for ECOSOC membership for the term 2023–2025. This clearly demonstrates our strong determination to making more meaningful contribution in the noble cause of this august UN body, especially in representing the interests of the groups of countries in special situations. We sincerely look forward to receiving support from all UN member states.
I thank you, Madam Chair.