Press Releases

    28 October 2005

    UN, Pacific Islands Forum Should Exploit Comparative Strengths, Secretary-General Says in Message to Papua New Guinea Meeting

    NEW YORK, 27 October (UN Headquarters) -- Following is the text of UN Secretary-General Kofi Annan's message to the 36th Pacific Islands Forum, as delivered today in Port Moresby by Jacqui Badcock, UN Resident Coordinator and Resident Representative of the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) in Papua New Guinea:

    It gives me great pleasure to send greetings to Prime Minister Somare and to all the participants in this important meeting of the Pacific Islands Forum.

    At last month's Summit meeting in New York, world leaders supported a stronger relationship between the United Nations and regional organizations, as envisaged in Chapter VIII of the Charter.  The Security Council has also stressed the need to increase collaboration between the United Nations and regional organizations, and has established the practice of meeting with them annually.  To support those efforts, high-level meetings between the UN Secretariat and regional organizations have now been made an annual event.  In addition, a Standing Committee has been set up to make sure that our cooperation mechanisms are effective, efficient and mutually reinforcing.

    The challenges and opportunities of this age of globalization oblige all countries and regions to work together and strengthen their partnerships.  Your Forum has taken significant steps in this direction by developing the Pacific Plan, focusing on four priority areas:  economic growth, sustainable development, governance and security.  I commend those efforts and take this opportunity to renew the readiness of the United Nations family to work closely with you in realizing the goals set by the Pacific Plan.

    I am also pleased to note that cooperation between the United Nations and the Pacific Islands Forum continues to grow stronger, deeper and wider.  The close interaction between the United Nations and the Forum's election observers, among others, during the successful elections in Bougainville earlier this year, as well as our first joint regional workshop on conflict prevention and peacebuilding in the Pacific, held last March in Nadi, are just the most recent examples of the enhanced cooperation between our organizations.

    We should build on the outcome of the Nadi workshop, exploit our comparative strengths and reinforce a collective approach to security.  Together, we can realize our common vision of a peaceful and prosperous twenty-first century in the Pacific region.  In that spirit, please accept my best wishes for a successful and productive meeting.

    * *** *