Statement by Mr. Jeffrey Salim Waheed, First Secretary of the Permanent Mission of the Maldives to the United Nations at the Plenary of the  General Assembly ,  28 November 2012

Thank you Mr. President,


My delegation gives sincere thanks for the work of the Secretariat and the Secretary General for his report on the follow up to the outcome of the Millennium Summit and the report on strengthening the United Nations system. The Maldives believes that the United Nations holds an unquestionable and unique position in multilateral system.


There is no doubt the world has, in recent years, entered a new era with new challenges facing the global community. Economic instability, climate change, food and nutrition security are all issues that have gained a new found prominence in today’s world. In the light of our growing interdependence, a collective and holistic approach is required, and whether the solution is political or socio-economic, isolationism is no longer an option. Finding multilateral solutions to these emerging challenges lies at the heart of global governance. This multilateral system should be inclusive, transparent and effective; it must have the capacity to respond, and remain relevant and responsive to emerging challenges.


Mr. President,


The Maldives believes that the governance institutions should be able to tackle global economic imbalances, promote sustained, inclusive and equitable growth, advance multilateral trade agreements, enhance food and energy security, provide social protection for the poor and the vulnerable as well as strengthen those mechanisms aimed at reducing inequalities. Effective global governance is essential for the implementation of Millennium Development Goals and the formulation and implementation of the post 2015 developmental agenda.


The Maldives notes with concern the current infrastructure of global governance. Both decentralization and inequity remains present within its membership and in its voting patterns. Yet, we have to understand that the global governance goes beyond the United Nations to other organizations and agencies, including World Trade Organisation and the Bretton Woods institutions.


My Delegation believes that beside regional groups, a particular emphasis needs to be given to the non-state actors which have been ever-present in the development and policy dialogue. The global governance system should be more capable of dealing with interconnected socio-economic challenges; a system that is more coherent and coordinated, supported by institutions which are representative, inclusive and effective.


In view of the principle of common but differential treatment, the Maldives believes that the multilateral framework should capture and respond to specific regional needs and demands, especially for vulnerable small states. Smaller and poorer countries are often the most affected by global rules having little to say in their design. Regional arrangements can help provide better representation for smaller and least developed countries, providing greater ownership and engagement with global policy.


Mr. President,


The Maldives recognizes the universality of the United Nations, and reaffirms its support and commitment to the on-going efforts to strengthen the body. In this regard, the Maldives notes with satisfaction the continuing interaction of the General Assembly with international, regional and sub-regional forums, including groups dealing with global matters to achieve and promote broad consensus. It is our hope that these interactions would ultimately lead to identifying and addressing the present deficiencies in global governance. It is our hope that the leadership of the United Nations could bring an inclusive and effective response to global matters of concern to the international community as envisioned in the Charter. It is through strengthened global governance our vision for the future might be realized. And these visions include those for the Millennium Development Goals, and the post-2015 process.


Mr President,


As a nation, the Maldives has had much success in meeting the Millennium Development Goal targets, having eradicated extreme poverty, achieved universal primary education, reduced child mortality, and combated deadly diseases. We now pioneer aggressive campaigns for equity, sustainability, and development. It is with these existing frameworks that the Maldives looks to the future, to both the framing and the eventual implementation of the Sustainable Development Goals.


As a board member for UN Women for the upcoming term, the Maldives looks forward to more efficient gender mainstreaming across UN entities, while stressing the importance of addressing women’s underrepresentation in governance structures and in political participation. The Maldives believes that the Entity’s presence in the field and its coordination with Member States must be given priority and that capacity and operations in the field be increased to meet with the ever-prevalent demand present.


Mr. President,


As a global community, though faced with an era of new challenges, it has been the United Nations that has cultivated a global atmosphere of enhanced development, security and human rights which have coalesced into tangible results for more of the world’s population than ever before. Democracy and good governance are spreading, and commitments to reducing conflict, poverty, discrimination, economic isolation and economic vulnerability endure in the psyche of the larger community of nations.


Yet, the strides that have been made to bring forward the development situations of many nations cannot be allowed to regress. Though we face one of the worst financial crises of our lifetimes, principles of equitable globalization, with economic growth, and sustained legal empowerment of vulnerable populations including the poor, should be promoted while ensuring that there is greater coherence in achieving different but interrelated goals. Gone are the days when we could consider economic development as separate from social development. Gone are the days when national policies could be developed outside of global prerogatives.


With the restructuring of our global governance systems, through a focus on sustained and equitable betterment, we shall overcome the challenges we face today, and those we will in the future. Though the road is long, this is a journey worth making and the principles of betterment and equity will be fructified on the tree of our common destiny.


Thank you, Mr. President!