Press Releases

                18 January 2005

    Development Goals not Utopian, but Eminently Achievable, Secretary-General Says at Launch of Millennium Project Report

    NEW YORK, 17 January (UN Headquarters) -- Following is the text of Secretary-General Kofi Annan’s remarks at the launch of the report of the Millennium Project in New York, today, 17 January:

    It is indeed a great pleasure to accept the final report of the Millennium Project.

    This is an important and impressive document.

    It is the product of an intense effort: wide-ranging consultations on all continents; tens of thousands of hours of work; thousands of pages of detailed analysis; and many, many years of experience on the part of more than 250 of the world’s leading development policy makers, practitioners and experts.

    The result is a major intellectual achievement -– a compelling work that offers a large number of concrete, practical proposals for reaching the Millennium Development Goals by the agreed date of 2015.

    The Goals are not utopian. They are eminently achievable. Many countries, including some of the poorest and least developed, are making real progress in achieving them. But many others, particularly in Africa, are not moving fast enough. The recommendations in this report offer ideas and strategies to help those who have fallen behind, as well as those looking to build on their gains.

    Member States have decided that their leaders will come to New York in September to review progress towards the Goals and in implementing all aspects of the Millennium Declaration. In the months ahead, they will engage in very serious in-depth discussions on some of the most important issues and dilemmas facing the international community. This report, along with that of the High-Level Panel on Threats, Challenges and Change, are very important contributions to that process. I intend to issue my own report in March.

    It is my sincere hope that the September Summit will produce bold and far-reaching decisions, and that we can work together to put in place the building blocks for a safer, more prosperous, and a fairer world.

    I would like to thank Jeff Sachs and his team for their commitment to that goal and for all the hard work they have done.

    I am also pleased that two members of the team are with us today: Ernesto Zedillo, the former president of Mexico, who co-chaired the task force on trade; and Geeta Rao Gupta, the President of the International Center for Research on Women, who co-chaired the task force on gender.

    In closing, it is my pleasure to commend this report to the Member States for careful consideration and to the widest possible global audience.

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