|Statement by Counselor Yao Shaojun of the Chinese Delegation at the Third Committee of the 70th Session of the General Assembly under the Agenda Item on Social Development|
The Chinese delegation wishes to congratulate you on your election to the chairmanship of the Third Committee of the 70th session of the General Assembly and pledges its full support to and cooperation with you and the Bureau in the discharge of your mandate. We are confident that your able leadership will guide this session to a complete success. My delegation welcomes the report submitted by the Secretary-General under this agenda item and associates itself with the statement made by South Africa on behalf of Group 77 and China. Here I would like to make the following observations:
First, we should achieve a comprehensive and inclusive social development. Poverty eradication, full employment, and social integration are the three main tasks of social development and as such they should be promoted in a comprehensive and balanced manner. Efforts must be made to eliminate discrimination and ensure that all have access to development opportunities and share the fruits of development. The growing gap between the rich and the poor is not only unsustainable, but also an affront to social equity and justice. Both the invisible and the visible hands should be utilized to make sure that the market force and the role of government work in an integrated and mutually reinforcing manner so as to achieve a pattern of social development that is both efficient and just.
Second, we should strive to achieve a social development characterized by reform and innovation. Reform produces opportunities and innovation creates new impetus. This year marks the 20th anniversary of the World Summit for Social Development, which offers a good opportunity for member states to reflect on their experience and lessons learned in the implementation of the Copenhagen Declaration and Program of Action over the past 20 years. We should rely on reform and innovation to unleash development potentials, increase the momentum of growth, and foster new core competitiveness, so as to achieve robust and sustainable social development.
Third, we should promote a pragmatic and effective social development. The 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development recently adopted by the UN Development Summit offers important guidance to national efforts for social development. To implement the Agenda's goals in the area of social development, pragmatic and effective measures are required to further eradicate poverty, promote employment, improve social security system, and enhance the protection of vulnerable groups, with a view to building a society in which everyone is free from want, has access to development and lives with dignity.
Fourth, we should seek an open and cooperative social development. Although countries differ in capacities and levels of development, all are participants, contributors and beneficiaries of global social development. International cooperation should be strengthened and greater attention given to the elimination of inequalities among countries. Developed countries should increase assistance to developing countries, and help to strengthen their national capacity for social development, so as to realize common development of all countries.
Since its reform and opening up over 30 years, China has charted a path of social development with distinct Chinese characteristics that is based on its specific situation. China has basically achieved MDGs. We have reduced the number of people living in poverty by 439 million, and achieved remarkable success in areas of education, health and persons with disabilities and so on. In 2014 alone, China lifted more than 10 million rural residents out of poverty and through the implementation of priority rehabilitation projects, provided different levels of rehabilitation service to 7.515 million persons with disabilities. In the first half of this year, China created 7.18 million new jobs in towns and cities across the country. As of now, the number of people participating in basic pension scheme and basic health insurance nationwide has reached 846 million and 656 million respectively. At the same time, great efforts have been made to improve the conditions of schools in poor regions, and 40 million students have been guaranteed a nutritious meal per day.
A few days ago, China's president Xi Jinping, in his speech at the UN Development Summit, proposed a set of ideas on global development and announced a series of initiatives to boost global development. The Chinese government is currently in the process of formulating the 13th Five-Year Plan. We will actively implement President Xi's ideas and initiatives and seek to incorporate the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development in the 13th Five-Year Plan, with a view to making further contributions to social development in China and around the globe.
Thank you, Mr. Chairman.