UN Secretary-General Addresses Meeting of Ibero-American Ministers of Foreign Affairs

22 September 2011: In his statement delivered at the lunch meeting of Iberoamerican Foreign Ministers in New York, US, UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon underlined that advancing economic growth, lifting people out of poverty and protecting the environment are interlinked, "one and the same cause." 

The meeting of Foreign Ministers from Portugal, Spain and the Spanish- and Portuguese-speaking countries of Latin America and the Caribbean (LAC) focused on preparations for the  XXI Iberoamerican Summit of Heads of State and Government, scheduled to take place from 28-29 October 2011, in Asuncion, Paraguay.

In a message delivered on his behalf by the Executive Secretary of the UN Economic Commission for Latin America and the Caribbean (ECLAC), Alicia Bárcena, Ban called on governments to "connect the dots between climate change, water scarcity, energy shortages, international crime prevention, global health, food security and women's empowerment." He added that "solutions to one problem can become solutions to all." Ban further urged governments to work proactively and transparently, dynamically engaging their people in defining long-term goals.

He also pledged that ECLAC would work closely with the Iberoamerican General Secretariat (SEGIB) and the host Government of Paraguay in the preparation of the document to be discussed at the Summit next month, Towards a New State Architecture for Inclusive Development. [UN Press Release]