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Speeches

  • The Secretary-General's message on International Volunteers Day Dec 5, 2016

    I extend my deepest gratitude to the more than 6,700 United Nations Volunteers, 12,000 United Nations Online Volunteers and the one billion community volunteers worldwide. You are all instrumental to the future of people and the planet. Your commitment and passion can act as inspiration to us all.

  • Statement by UNDP Administrator Helen Clark on World Aids Day 2016 Dec 1, 2016

    Statement by UNDP Administrator Helen Clark World AIDS Day 2016 Statement December 1 This World AIDS Day serves as a reminder of the urgent need to come together as a global community and recommit ourselves to ending AIDS as a public health threat by 2030—one of the targets of the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development. AIDS continues to be one of the leading causes of death worldwide. UNAIDS warns that in spite of the progress made over the past 15 years, our job is far from done. While nearly fifty per cent of people living with HIV are currently accessing antiretroviral therapy, 18.5 million people are still in need of treatment. Declines in new HIV infection rates among adults have stalled, and infection rates are climbing in some regions. In 2015 nearly 7500 young women aged 15-24 years acquired HIV every week. These trends suggest that HIV prevention efforts are falling short. There continues to be a lack of funding for human rights programming to address punitive legal environments, stigma and discrimination, and other human rights barriers which often prevent people, especially the most marginalized, from accessing health services. At the same time, we must address other serious and often associated challenges. Last year, more than 1.8 million people died from TB, including 400,000 with HIV/TB co-infection, accounting for around one in every three AIDS-related deaths. HIV drug resistance is also of increasing concern, leading to treatment failure and further spread of drug resistant HIV, while second and third line treatments for HIV and treatment for Hepatitis C are often out of reach for many patients because of their high cost. The Sustainable Development Goals reflect the interconnectedness of health and development, including the widening economic and social inequalities, rapid urbanization, and the continuing burden of HIV. The UNDP Strategy on HIV, Health and Development 2016-2021: Connecting the Dots recognizes that many areas of development have an impact on health and that multi-sectoral, rights-based, and gender-sensitive approaches are essential to addressing HIV and health-related development challenges. People living with HIV and civil society organisations play a crucial role in the AIDS response. UNDP is committed to working with them and with other partners around the world to redouble its efforts to end inequalities which fuel new HIV infections and act as barriers to accessing health services. Future generations depend on us to get this job done.

  • Administrator’s statement on International Women’s Day 2016 Mar 8, 2016

    By closing gender gaps in labor markets, education, health, and other areas, we can reduce poverty and hunger, improve the nutrition and education of children, and drive inclusive growth. It’s not a choice, but an imperative: failing to address gender inequalities and discrimination against women will make it impossible to achieve the Sustainable Development Goals.

  • United Nations Secretary-General’s message on International Anti-Corruption Day Dec 9, 2015

    The United Nations Convention against Corruption provides a comprehensive platform for governments, non-governmental organizations, civil society, and individual citizens. Through prevention, criminalization, international cooperation and assets recovery, the Convention advances global progress toward ending corruption.

  • Statement on World AIDS Day by UNDP Administrator Helen Clark Dec 1, 2015

    There is reason to feel encouraged on this World AIDS Day. The world has made enormous progress - new HIV infections have fallen by 35% since 2000 and AIDS-related deaths have dropped by 42% since their peak in 2004. Today, 15.8 million people are accessing life-saving antiretroviral therapy, 2.2 million of whom are supported through the UNDP-Global Fund partnership.

  • United Nations chief's message on the International Day of Youth Aug 12, 2015

    As the world changes with unprecedented speed, young people are proving to be invaluable partners who can advance meaningful solutions. Youth movements and student groups are challenging traditional power structures and advocating a new social contract between States and societies. Young leaders have contributed fresh ideas, taken proactive measures, and mobilized through social media as never before.

  • Opening Speech at the Technical Consultations of the International Ebola Recovery Conference Jul 9, 2015

    We are all very aware of the devastating impact of the Ebola crisis on the people, communities and institutions of Guinea, Liberia, and Sierra Leone. This impact will be felt for decades to come unless the international community steps up its support.

  • Helen Clark's Statement on Pope Francis Encyclical on the Environment and the Poor Jun 18, 2015

    The poor and the marginalized in our societies are the ones who are the most vulnerable to climate change, and are also the ones hardest hit by its impacts.

  • Message by United Nations Secretary-General, Ban Ki-Moon, on Africa Day May 25, 2015

    Africa continues to make steady economic, social and political progress. Overall, the continent’s economy grew by roughly 4 per cent in 2014, creating one of the longest stretches of uninterrupted positive economic expansion in Africa’s history. As a result, a growing number of Africans have joined the middle class each year. With investment in education, health and infrastructure increasing, the prospects for much of Africa are bright.

  • Statement by UNDP Administrator Helen Clark on International Day for the Elimination of Violence Against Women Nov 25, 2014

    Violence against women and girls appears all too often in headlines across the world. But along with the cases that make the news are many thousands of other incidents occurring every day, on every continent, and in every country. According to the World Health Organization, gender-based violence kills as many women between the ages of 15 and 44 as does cancer. Its toll on women's health surpasses that of traffic accidents and malaria combined.