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UK to announce action to help achieve the UN’s Sustainable Development Goals at the UN General Assembly

The Deputy Prime Minister will head up the UK delegation for the United Nations General Assembly High-Level Week.

  • Deputy Prime Minister Oliver Dowden will head up UK delegation in New York for the United Nations General Assembly (UNGA) High-Level Week.
  • He and other Ministers will set out how the UK is increasing efforts to achieve the UN’s Sustainable Development Goals, a series of commitments to make the world a fairer, healthier and more prosperous place by 2030.
  • Foreign Secretary James Cleverly arrived in New York yesterday (Sunday), and met counterparts from the US, France, Egypt, Barbados and Indonesia as well as attend G7 and migration meetings.

The world must recommit to the UN’s Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) if we are to achieve them by 2030, Deputy Prime Minister Oliver Dowden will tell the United Nations General Assembly (UNGA) in New York next week.

As the halfway point between the launch of the SDGs in 2015 and the target for their delivery in 2030 approaches, he, the Foreign Secretary and the wider UK delegation will make clear countries urgently need to visibly and vocally recommit to the Goals to make the world healthier, fairer, and more prosperous.

The Deputy Prime Minister will lead the UK delegation and travel to New York on Tuesday – he will attend the UN Security Council session on Thursday. He will attend the UN Security Council session on multilateralism and Ukraine on Wednesday to recommit our steadfast support to Ukraine and to hold Russia to account for its illegal actions, both in Ukraine and its cynical attempts to undermine global food supplies and security, causing worldwide suffering in the world’s poorest nations.

The Deputy Prime Minister will also deliver the UK’s address to the General Assembly on Friday where he will call on nations to cooperate to ensure the benefits of revolutionary new technologies like AI are felt equally, while also preventing their misuse. He will also hold meetings on AI with leading technology companies and discuss AI regulation with other countries ahead of the UK’s AI Safety Summit.

He will also attend UN meetings on boosting global health and announce new UK support for strengthening health systems. He will also discuss climate action and growing global investment in Africa.

The Foreign Secretary, arrived in New York yesterday (Sunday), he met key allies and stressd the need to keep up the pressure on Russia, making it clear to Putin that he cannot “outlast” the international backing for Ukraine.

He is due to hold talks today (Monday) and on Tuesday with, among others, US Secretary of State Antony Blinken, French Foreign Minister Catherine Colonna, Egyptian Foreign Minister Sameh Shoukry and Indonesia’s Foreign Minister Retno Marsudi.

The Foreign Secretary will today co-convene an event on Artificial Intelligence (AI) chaired by US Secretary of State Antony Blinken.

It will bring together governments, tech firms and NGOs to discuss how AI can accelerate progress towards the Sustainable Development Goals. The Deputy Prime Minister will also be discussing the challenges and opportunities of AI with global partners and UK and US tech firms operating in the USA during his visit, ahead of the UK hosting the AI Safety Summit in November.

Deputy Prime Minister Oliver Dowden yesterday said:

“I’m delighted to be leading the UK delegation to the UN General Assembly on behalf of the Prime Minister.

“The UK has always worked closely with the UN to create a safer, healthier and more prosperous world. I look forward to using this year to discuss the challenges and opportunities of AI, so that the benefits of this revolutionary technology are felt fairly across the world, and how Britain can be at the forefront of that effort.

“Alongside this we’ll be announcing new support to tackle climate change, boost global economic growth and prevent future pandemics.

“But the principles of the UN are being challenged by Russia’s appalling actions in Ukraine: deliberately attacking and terrorising civilians and seeking to hold the world to ransom by blocking vital food supplies.

“I will be challenging Russia at the Security Council and other nations to strengthen international support for Ukraine’s freedom.”

Foreign Secretary James Cleverly yesterday said:

“Only a functioning multilateral system can address the complex and interconnected global challenges we are facing. But our system is under strain, particularly from intensifying geopolitical rivalry. The Sustainable Development Goals are seriously off-track, and we need to come together to recommit and accelerate their delivery by 2030.

“Russia is a permanent member of the UN Security Council, but its invasion of Ukraine is a clear breach of the UN Charter. Our citizens rightly demand that we curb illegal migration and boost economic growth. Climate change and new technologies like AI present extreme risks, but also unprecedented opportunities.

“Putin is counting on the misguided assumption that he can outlast international support for Ukraine. We will not be deterred. It is in all our interests, to ensure that Russia is defeated and evicted from Ukraine’s sovereign territory as quickly as possible.”

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