Statement by H.E. Rabab Fatima, Ambassador and Permanent Representative of Bangladesh to the UN in New York at the UNGA Meeting on Thematic Cluster 1 “Accelerating and Scaling up the SDGs, leaving no-one behind”, Thursday, 10 February 2022


I thank the President of the General Assembly for convening us today.

I also thank the UN Secretary General for his comprehensive statement.

My delegation aligns itself with the statements of G-77 and China and the UN75 Leaders’ Network.

Mr. President,

The Secretary General’s report “Our Common Agenda” provides us an ambitious roadmap for addressing the most pressing global challenges of our time. It captures the political commitments demonstrated by our leaders in the UN75 declaration to strengthen multilateralism in delivering on our shared goals, especially to build back more sustainable and resilient from the COVID 19 pandemic.

Allow me to share a few specific reflections on the first cluster.

First, we support the Secretary General’s proposal to convene an “Education Summit” in 2022.

During this pandemic, online platforms remain the most effective means to deliver education across the world. We wish to build on this experience and expertise. The Summit can focus on expanding educational opportunities for all through digital transformation. The needs of the global South should be at the top of the agenda.

Second, we are on an unequal recovery track from the pandemic. If we fail to reverse this trend, this will not only jeopardize our social development gains but also leave long-lasting scars in our societies.

Against this backdrop, we welcome the proposal of the SG to hold a World Social Summit in 2025. Meanwhile, we must act urgently to address rising poverty and inequalities, vaccine divide, job loss, and weak social protection system to ensure a just and equitable recovery.

Third, we are encouraged by the Secretary General’s renewed commitment to gender equality. We wish to remain engaged in the realization of the five transformative measures proposed in his report. [In this regard, we call for strengthening the UNWOMEN, for advancing our shared goals of women’s empowerment and gender equality.]

Fourth, we welcome the SG’s recommendations on youth including his proposal to establish a UN Youth Office. We wish to remain engaged in promoting greater inclusion of youth in all national and global policy discourses.

Finally, on the protection of refugees and displaced persons, we would like to stress the importance of international responsibility and burden sharing. The UN must reinforce its advocacy to advance durable solutions, especially in protracted situations. The primary focus should be on addressing the root causes of statelessness, especially in countries of origin.

I thank you.