Bhutan’s com­mit­ted to­wards achiev­ing the 2030 agenda for sus­tain­able de­vel­op­ment and tack­ling cli­mate change

Bhutan Times - - Home - Staff Re­porter

Chief Jus­tice Tsh­er­ing Wangchuk, Chief Ad­vi­sor to the in­terim gov­ern­ment ad­dressed the gen­eral de­bate of the 73rd Ses­sion of the United Na­tions Gen­eral Assem­bly in New York on 27th Septem­ber 2018.

Amongst oth­ers, Chief Ad­vi­sor reaf­firmed Bhutan’s sup­port to the United Na­tions Sec­re­tary Gen­eral’s agenda to re­form the UN de­vel­op­ment sys­tem, which is in sync with agenda 2030 to make UN more rel­e­vant and fit for pur­pose. He also con­veyed Bhutan’s com­mit­ment to­wards achiev­ing the 2030 agenda for sus­tain­able de­vel­op­ment and tack­ling cli­mate change.

On the UN re­forms the Chief Ad­vi­sor also wel­comed the draft im­ple­men­ta­tion plan by the UN Deputy Sec­re­tary Gen­eral for the in­cep­tion of the new res­i­dent co­or­di­na­tor sys­tems. Tak­ing note of the ap­peal of the mem­ber states for the front loaded vol­un­tary con­tri­bu­tion to the spe­cial trust fund to cover the im­me­di­ate gap of the cost of a rein­vig­o­rated res­i­dent co­or­di­na­tor sys­tem. Bhutan will be mak­ing a to­ken of vol­un­tary con­tri­bu­tion to­wards the said trust fund.

On the 2030 agenda for sus­tain­able de­vel­op­ment the Chief Ad­vi­sor said that the re­forms of the UN must pro­vide the es­sen­tial im­pe­tus to gal­va­nize sup­port for progress in ar­eas that have been found de­fi­cient to meet the goals and tar­gets within the set time frame of 2030.

He re­ported that Bhutan is well on track to im­ple­ment the sus­tain­able de­vel­op­ment goals. “With hap­pi­ness and well be­ing of our peo­ple at the cen­ter of our de­vel­op­ment ef­forts, Bhutan’s de­vel­op­ment model of Gross Na­tional Hap­pi­ness res­onates well with the ob­jec­tives of Agenda 2030.” he reiter- ated.

Mak­ing his em­pha­sis on the Bhutan’s poised to grad­u­ate from the Least De­vel­oped Coun­tries cat­e­gory; Bhutan had suc­cess­fully com­pleted sec­ond tri­en­ni­als but has not been able to achieve the eco­nomic vul­ner­a­bil­ity in­dex. Bhutan con­tin­ues to face se­ri­ous chal­lenges in terms of nar­row eco­nomic base and vul­ner­a­bil­ity to nat­u­ral dis­as­ters. The eco­nomic and struc­tural im­ped­i­ments to growth are also re­ported in the vul­ner­a­bil­ity pro­file of Bhutan by United Na­tions Con­fer­ence on Trade and De­vel­op­ments (UNTCAD) he added.

Thank­ing de­vel­op­ment part­ners for their sup­port to Bhutan’s so­cio eco­nomic de­vel­op­ment, which has en­abled her to meet the thresh­old for grad­u­a­tion from Least De­vel­op­ment Coun­try ( LDC) cat­e­gory, the Chief Ad­vi­sor high­lighted the need to place grad­u­a­tion to en­able Bhutan to ab­sorb the im­pact re­sult- ing from the with­drawal of in­ter­na­tional sup­port mea­sures.

On cli­mate change the Chief Ad­vi­sor said that it is due to global warm­ing and hu­man ac­tiv­ity is not only a se­ri­ous threat to hu­man­ity but also to sus­tain­able de­vel­op­ment

“Ac­tion is needed at in­ter­na­tional, re­gional, na­tional and lo­cal lev­els to com­bat this men­ace. The im­pacts of cli­mate change af­fect the poorer coun­tries and poorer peo­ple dis­pro­por­tion­ally, as they are not able to adapt with its im­pacts. Since, mit­i­gat­ing cli­mate means re­duc­ing emis­sion of green house gases , which is emit­ted from con­sump­tion of en­ergy for all eco­nomic and house­holds ac­tiv­i­ties , it af­fects every­one and is tied to eco­nomic and en­ergy ac­tiv­i­ties.”

“Cli­mate change also threat­ens to push 100 mil­lion peo­ple into ex­treme poverty by 2030. Cli­mate change refugees on a large scale will cer­tainly be­come a re­al­ity”.

As the first coun­try to sign the Rapid De­vel­op­ment Level ( RDL) agree­ment with the UN in De­cem­ber 2017, and also hav­ing pledged an in­te­grated Formed Po­lice unit when­ever called upon by the United Na­tions. Bhutan stands ready to de­ploy a con­tin­gent when­ever, the UN calls for.

In the end he said that our mon­archs and peo­ple over the decade have es­tab­lished a strong foun­da­tion for the func­tional, vi­brant and in­tel­li­gent democ­racy within the tapestry of con­sti­tu­tion­al­ism and rule of law and re­tal­i­ated the coun­try’s com­mit­ment to work fur­ther with the mem­ber states to en­sure that the United Na­tions con­tin­ues to pay a key role in pro­mot­ing peace, se­cu­rity and sol­i­dar­ity.

Chief Ad­vi­sor is cur­rently lead­ing the Bhutanese del­e­ga­tion to the 73rd UN Gen­eral Assem­bly in New York.

On cli­mate change the Chief Ad­vi­sor said that it is due to global warm­ing and hu­man ac­tiv­ity is not only a se­ri­ous threat to hu­man­ity but also to sus­tain­able de­vel­op­ment

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