Miroslav Lajcak, president of the 72nd UN General Assembly speaks at a UN meeting in New York, on Sept 12, 2017. (LI MUZI / XINHUA)
UNITED NATIONS/BEIJING - The United Nations welcomes China to play a bigger role in global affairs, Miroslav Lajcak, president of the 72nd UN General Assembly, said here Wednesday.
I welcome the fact that China's leadership is stepping up to play a leading role in the multilateral system and global affairs
president of the 72nd UN General Assembly
"I welcome the fact that China's leadership is stepping up to play a leading role in the multilateral system and global affairs, he said, adding that "I laud China's emphasis on multilateralism with the United Nations at the core."
In a written interview with Xinhua, Lajcak said that China is already playing a very important role at the United Nations, with its key involvement in the adoption of the universal and transformational 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development.
With 30 years of diplomatic experience, the UN official said that "I have always believed strongly in the power of multilateralism - in compromise over conflict."
The General Assembly President said that having achieved impressive economic progress, China continues to increase its investments in the least developed countries, which has been appreciated by the international community.
China already occupies a significant position as one of the five permanent members of the UN Security Council and one of the main contributors to the UN budget and financing for development, he said.
China's commitment to establish a 10-year US$1-billion China-UN peace and development fund has been especially helpful, he said.
"I am also heartened by China's pledge to join the new UN Peacekeeping Capability Readiness System and take the lead in setting up a permanent peacekeeping police squad and building a peacekeeping standby force of 8,000 troops," the UN official said.
On climate change, he said China was among the first countries to ratify the Paris Agreement, thus leading by example.
China's pledge to have a US$3.1 billion to the South-South Cooperation Fund on Climate Change was an important move for developing countries, he said.
"My most important task is to ensure that the General Assembly makes a positive difference in people's lives. That is why I wanted the theme of the 72nd session to be: "Focusing on people: striving for peace and a decent life for all on a sustainable planet," the GA president said.
Maintaining the momentum on sustainable development and climate change; promote human dignity and modernize the United Nations through revitalizing the General Assembly, reforming the Security Council and strengthening the Economic and Social Council, are also his focus, he said.
Regarding poverty, migrants, the environment, human rights and peace, he said that we need a system of global governance to address this very complex transnational issue, which is an urgent test for the United Nations.
Protecting the environment and eradicating poverty are also crucial elements that are needed for a sustainable planet, he said.
Human rights, a key pillar of the United Nations' work, need to be protected in a non-politicized manner, Lajcak said.
Preventing conflicts before they erupt should be a focus of the UN, because preventive diplomacy saves lives as well as money, he said, adding that phenomena such as climate change and terrorism knows no borders and needs to be tackled collectively.
China ready to promote reform of global governance system
A Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesperson said Wednesday that China stands ready to join the international community to actively promote the reform of global governance system.
Foreign Ministry spokesperson Geng Shuang made the remarks regarding reports that the 71st session of the United Nations (UN) General Assembly recently adopted a resolution which incorporates the principle of "extensive consultation, joint contribution and shared benefits" put forward by China.
He said that this principle emphasizes that all relevant parties should consult, work and benefit together, embodying the vision of equality, cooperation and win-win outcomes. Against the backdrop of the intertwining of the interests of all countries and the rising of all sorts of global challenges, the principle is of important practical significance.
Geng said that previously, the resolutions adopted by relevant organs of the UN also contained content such as the building of the Belt and Road Initiative and the community of shared future for mankind that were proposed by China. This demonstrates that Chinese voices, proposals and wisdom are gaining understanding, support and response from an increasing number of countries and are becoming the consensus of the international community.
China stands ready to follow the above-mentioned principles and visions to actively promote the reform of global governance system so as to make it better mirror the changes of the international landscape and better serve all countries around the world, he said.
On September 11, the 71st session of the UN General Assembly adopted a resolution titled "The United Nations in global economic governance" under the theme of "Central role of the United Nations system in global governance." The resolution requires all parties to improve global economic governance and strengthen the role of the UN in the principle of "extensive consultation, joint contribution and shared benefits."