UN praises G20 summit for its role in promoting sustainable development

United Nations Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon speaks during a press conference at the G20 summit in Hangzhou, China on September 4, 2016. Photo: EPA

The G20 summit in Hangzhou is a congregation that is not only focusing on short-term financial and economic issues but also putting forth insights on the sustainable development of the world economy, said United Nations Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon.

Ban made the remarks at a press conference on Sunday when the G20 summit was kicked off. It is his last time to attend a G20 summit as the head of the UN.

At the press conference, Ban praised Chinese President Xi Jinping for his effort to promote the ratification of the Paris Climate Treaty and described it as taking a leading role in dealing with the climate change.

On the eve of the G20 summit in Hangzhou on Saturday, China and the US, the world's biggest emitters of greenhouse gases, announced the ratification of the Paris Climate Treaty, which is widely seen as a significant advance in the battle against global warming.

The UN chief said that the ratification by China and the US has brought the total number of countries approving the international climate change agreement to 26, which account for a combined 39 percent of global emissions.

Ban called for other G20 leaders to speed up their domestic approval process for the international climate change agreement, as 29 more countries need to ratify the pact to put it into effect.

He also thanked China for including the 2030 Agenda of Sustainable Development into the agenda of the G20 summit, making it the first such summit to have climate change and sustainable development discussed simultaneously.

When talking about China's achievement in relieving poverty, Ban said that China's effort has remarkably helped the global process of poverty relief.

The Chinese government has turned the idea of the Millennium Development Goals into practical action by inviting developing countries including Thailand and African nations to take part in the G20 summit, which shows the intent for South-South cooperation, added Ban.

Ban hailed the G20 summit in Hangzhou as a good start of the implementation of the UN Sustainable Development Goals.

(The article is translated and edited by Ding Yi.)

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