|Statement by Ambassador Liu Zhenmin at the 33rd Annual Meeting of Foreign Ministers of the Group of 77|
Statement by H.E. Ambassador Liu Zhenmin
Deputy Permanent Representative of China to the United Nations
At the 33rd Annual Meeting of the Foreign Ministers of the Group of 77
New York, 25 September 2009
At the outset, I wish to extend, on behalf of the Chinese government, our congratulations on the convening of the 33rd Foreign Ministers Annual Meeting of the Group of 77. I thank Sudan for its remarkable work during its chairmanship of the Group of 77 this year. I would also like to congratulate Yemen on assuming the chairmanship for the year 2010.
The world is still in the grip of the financial crisis. Issues such as climate change, energy shortage and food crisis have mingled to affect the world and the gap between the North and the South is widening. Most developing countries are faced with predicaments such as economic downturn; greater difficulty in gaining foreign investment, and deteriorating development environment. It is estimated by a relevant international organization that developing countries will see an increase of 55 to 90 million people in abject poverty this year, and that people suffering from chronic hunger will soar from 850 million to 1 billion, which account for more than 18% of the total population of developing countries. The developing world is confronted with an unprecedented development crisis.
In the face of a host of severe challenges, the United Nations has played an important role. It convened the High-level Event on Millennium Development Goals, the High-level Meeting on African Development, the Follow-up International Conference on Financing for Development, the Conference on Financial and Economic Crisis and Its Impact on Development, and the just-concluded UN Summit on Climate Change. These meetings discussed how the international community could address the challenges and overcome the difficulties together through unity and cooperation. In this process, the Group of 77 has played an effective role and defended the interests of developing countries. Under the complicated and difficult situation now, the Group of 77 and China are faced with greater challenges. In this connection, I would like to put forward the following proposals on the work that the Group of 77 and China can do in the days to come:
First, strengthen coordination to safeguard the common interests of developing countries．Unity and mutual understanding is our fine tradition and virtue. It is proved that, so long as we bear in mind our long-term and overall interests, and properly address our disputes, we will be able to speak in one voice, increase our influence and defend our common interests in major development and environmental issues such as the world economy, trade, finance, environment, and configuration of the development system. Under the current extremely difficult and challenging circumstances, it is all the more important for us to continue our efforts to strengthen coordination and communication, respect each other, seek common ground while shelving differences, and join hands in weathering the crisis．
Second, make focused efforts and give top priority to resolving issues of overall importance that are of concern to developing countries. Developing countries are not to blame for the current development crisis, but