President Ali calls for collaboration among developing states

– in fight against COVID-19
– advocates for increased development financing

His Excellency, Dr. Mohamed Irfaan Ali, today said the rebuilding of economies and strengthening of public health systems, will depend on the ability of developing states to work together. 

The Head of State was at the time delivering remarks at the opening ceremony of the 44th Meeting of Ministers of Foreign Affairs of the Group of 77 and China, which was hosted virtually. 

President Ali said collaboration among developing states was vital as they move towards recovery from the COVID-19 pandemic. He also advocated for increased development financing to assist countries. 

H.E. Dr. Mohamed Irfaan Ali, President of Guyana

“If we are to rebound, stronger and better, it is imperative that we internalise the lessons of the pandemic and chart a more inclusive, balanced and sustainable development path. This requires, fundamentally, for us to address issues such as development gaps and high indebtedness and to advocate for greater access to development financing,” Dr. Ali said.

Though still a long way off, he said developing states will have to collaborate on developing and distributing COVID-19 vaccines as a “global public good.”

To this end, the international community needs to support institutions such as the World Health Organization, which are best equipped to tackle such a collective effort.  

The President said the new realities brought on by the pandemic have revealed, in stark terms, the pivotal role of international co-operation in responding to extant global challenges.

“The COVID-19 pandemic has spread to every corner of the world, striking almost every state, regardless of size, population or level of development. The long-term impact of this deadly pandemic will be felt more severely by the most vulnerable populations, including those from within our member states. The pandemic has already begun to reverse and eliminate decades of developmental gains,” he relayed. 

As such, the economic, social and political advancement of the developing world must, now more than ever, be placed at the top of the global agenda. It is equally important that new and innovative measures to sustain action on the 2030 Agenda are developed, considering the unique challenges faced by developing countries, particularly the least developed countries recovering from conflict, the President said. 

Guyana has formulated a response plan to the pandemic, which prioritises the need to ensure the health and safety of every citizen, he added. 

Moreover, Guyana has capitalised on its Chairmanship of the G77 and China Group to advocate for support to mitigate the effects the pandemic has already had on the gains developing countries had made in the fight against climate change. 

Dr Ali told leaders today that Guyana has made climate action a national priority and remains committed to working with others to overcome the world’s climate crisis. 

“It is in this context that I reiterate the call for us to continue to pursue, both through strong advocacy and action, a climate agenda that moves our countries and economies toward a low carbon future. As a Group, we must also strive to uphold the Paris Agreement and work with all stakeholders, including bilateral partners, to take urgent action to realise the Agreement’s ambitions.” The Group of 77 and China will always have a pivotal role in such an undertaking, as it continues to serve the people of the developing world, the President said. 

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