Sustainable development, refugee crisis, China's agenda at UN General Assembly

2016-09-18 10:19:38 | From:

Chinese Premier Li Keqiang is set to propose ways to achieve the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development of the United Nations as he gets ready to travel to New York to attend this year's UN General Assembly session.

During his stay at UN headquarters, the premier will also pledge support from China in efforts to address the growing refugee crisis the world is facing.


The UN's 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development has a total of 17 goals for the world to be achieved by 2030, including goals in economic development, poverty alleviation, gender equality, environmental protection, and others.

The agenda, which was agreed upon during the UN summit last year, became one of the major issues for discussion when leaders of the world's largest 20 economies convened in Eastern China's Hangzhou earlier this month.

China has decided to take a step further.

Premier Li Keqiang will host a specific symposium for the agenda as part of this year's forthcoming UN General Assembly session.

The purpose is to try to hammer out a series of detailed plans and policies to help achieve the 17 goals.

Both UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon and the new President of the UN General Assembly Peter Thomson are expected to attend the symposium.

China is also set to share its own experience in seeking sustainable development through an official document to be released at the symposium.

More than 30 years of economic development have given China international recognition in areas such as combating poverty and promoting gender equality, but for China this is nowhere near the end.

China put forward the idea of "Belt and Road" in 2013, aiming to strengthen infrastructure interconnectivity and economic cooperation within Eurasia, a region which has more than half of the world's population living below the poverty line.

Hong Pingfan, an official with the UN Department of Economic and Social Affairs, says the three-year-old Chinese initiative is doing the worlds a big favor on pathways to the UN 2030 Agenda.

"It's been proved in some cases that when infrastructure gets better in a region, more women will be relieved from intensive manual work which is time-consuming. They will then be able to participate in more value-added work. In this way we will achieve greater gender equality. In the meantime, better infrastructure will make it earlier for women and children to get access to more education and healthcare services. These are all important goals in the 2030 Agenda."

One challenge for the realization of the 2030 Agenda is the growing refugee crisis the world is facing.

Data compiled by the UN show there are more than 65 million refugees across the world today, the highest number since the end of the World War II.

This makes the world's first-ever summit on refuges, to be held on September 19th, one of the most high-profile events during this year's UN General Assembly session.

The summit will give birth to an UN resolution.

David Donoghue (Dona-hughe), one of the top organizers behind the summit, says the resolution will be historic.

"If those commitments are implemented, it will really transform the lives of the countries, the numbers of people who are caught up in these large movements, both those caught up today and those involved in the future movements. If the movements set in these documents are implemented, then really they will make a huge difference to the lives of these people who are trapped in such disaster over which they have no control."

As China's highest-ranking official to attend the summit, Premier Li Keqiang is expected to propose solutions to refugee crisis from Chinese perspective.

China proposes to strengthen humanitarian aids while at the same time address the root causes of refugee crisis such as war and inequality in a document submitted earlier to the UN General Assembly.

Premier Li Keqiang will embark on his 10-day tour to the other side of the Pacific Ocean on September 18th.

He's scheduled to pay official visits to Canada and Cuba after leaving the UN headquarters.

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