On behalf of the Government of the Lao People’s Democratic Republic, I would like to extend my sincere congratulations to Excellency John Ash of Antigua and Barbuda on your election as President of this 68th Session of the UN General Assembly. May I assure our full support and cooperation to Your Excellency in the discharge of your noble duty. Likewise, I would like to sincerely commend Excellency Vuk Jeremic for the successful completion of his task as President of the 67th Session of the UNGA.
The Lao Government offers its condolences to the Government and people of Kenya on the loss of life as a result of terrorist attack last week in Nairobi, and I join the international community in condemning such an inhumane act.
The year 2013 marks a new turning point in promoting international cooperation for development and in addressing global poverty. At the World Summit on Sustainable Development or Rio+20 held in Rio De Janero, Brazil in 2012, the world leaders initiated an international consultative process to chart out vision and concrete action for enhancing sustainable development in the post-2015. This clearly testifies that poverty eradication and sustainable development remains our prevailing priority, because throughout the past decades, despite tremendous efforts made by the international community to achieve poverty eradication and development targets, 1,2 billion poor people or 22 percent of the world population still live in poverty. In addition, natural environment continues to be threatened and damaged that has led to climate imbalance, frequent occurrence of natural disasters, which have become unfamiliar phenomenon that had rarely been seen in the past years. Moreover, political and social unrests and armed conflicts occurred in different parts of the world continue to prolong and there has yet been any sign of immediate resolution. Likewise, the global and regional economic and financial crisis has intensified its gravity that has posed long-term impact on developing countries, especially the least developed ones.