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PM to address ECOSOC high-level forum today

ISLAMABAD: Prime Minister Imran Khan will deliver an opening statement on Monday (today) at the Economic and Social Council (ECOSOC) Forum on financing for Development (FfD), highlighting urgent response to the economic challenges.

The forum will be held from 12-15 April under Pakistan’s Presidency of ECOSOC. In his address, the prime minister will call on the international community to take bold and urgent decisions to respond to the challenges posed by the COVID-19 crisis, achievement of the Sustainable Development Goals and climate solutions.

“The objective of the Forum is to mobilise adequate financial support to enable the developing countries to recover from the impact of the pandemic and achieve the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) and the climate objectives,” said statement from PM’s office.

The special high-level segment of the ECOSOC Forum is being held in response to a decision of the UN General Assembly. Ten heads of state/government and 50 ministers will participate in the special segment, which will be inaugurated by Prime Minister Imran Khan.

According to the statement, Prime minister Imran Khan has been in the forefront of the international efforts to provide developing countries with the fiscal space and liquidity to respond to the current COVID-19 induced economic recession.

The prime minister advanced the “Global Initiative on Debt Relief” for developing countries in April 2020 In January, he proposed a 5-point financial action plan encompassing debt relief, creation and redistribution of Special Drawing Rights (SDRs) by the IMF, larger concessional assistance, mobilization of climate finance, and end to illicit financial flows from the developing countries.

An investment fair is being organized virtually on the sidelines of the FfD forum. Four countries, including Pakistan, will present specific sustainable development projects at the fair.

Foreign Minister Shah Mahmood Qureshi will introduce Pakistan’s investment opportunities and projects to the investors at the fair.

The forum envisages six panel discussions revolving around the themes of resilient recovery, recurrent debt crises, pandemic response and recovery, liquidity for vulnerable countries and climate resistant future.

Deputy Chairman Planning Commission Dr Jehanzeb Khan will also participate as a panelist. The four-day FFD forum will be presided over by Pakistan’s Permanent Representative to the UN, Ambassador Munir Akram.