Tuesday 9 July 2013
Relations with intergovernmental organisations

UIC at ECOSOC High-Level Segment

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The 2013 substantive session of the Economic and Social Council of the United Nations (ECOSOC) was held from 1 – 4 July 2013 in Geneva, under the chairmanship of S.E.M. Néstor Osorio, its President.

Innovations in science and technology will be vital for tackling today’s global challenges, from reducing poverty to ensuring sustainable development, top United Nations officials stressed, as they kicked off the annual substantive session of the Economic and Social Council (ECOSOC).

Science, technology, innovation and culture can significantly impact each of the three dimensions of sustainable development – economic, social and environmental,”

said the President of ECOSOC, Ambassador Néstor Osorio of Colombia.

They present huge opportunities. But effectively channelling them for sustainable development also poses significant challenges,”

he added, addressing the opening in Geneva of the high-level segment of the 2013 session of the central UN forum for discussing global economic and social issues.

While ECOSOC’s substantive session runs from 1 – 26 July, Government ministers, private sector leaders and heads of UN agencies, funds and programmes have met during four days for the high-level segment, which this year focused on science, technology and innovation, or STI.

The steadily increasing pace of technological innovation makes ours an era of a long profound change… So many fields of human endeavour – medicine, energy, agriculture – have made significant, even drastic, improvements in just a few generations,”

noted Mr Osorio.

Yet, in the field of development, despite our progress, there are still over one billion people living in extreme poverty. And tonight many, if not most, will go to bed hungry,”

he added.

UIC, present at the meeting as a non-governmental organisation, was made aware of the role that technology, innovation and science will play in achieving the Millenium Development Goals which feature on the post-2015 development agenda.

As such, UIC and the railways express a desire to fully participate in the sustainable development of societies and the movement of individuals and goods by confirming the priority to be given to these areas in the coming years.

Moreover, through its actions relating to the acquisition and transfer of skills by the younger generations and establishing railway training networks, UIC will contribute to promoting employment and decent work – topics being addressed at present by ECOSOC’s Coordination Segment and will continue to be the focus throughout July.

For further information please contact Vincent Vu, UIC Director of Institutional Relations: vu@uic.org

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01. General view at a high-level policy dialogue with the international financial and trade institutions on current developments in the world economy during the United Nations Economic and Social Council (ECOSOC) (2 July 2013, © UN / Jean-Marc Ferré)
02. Ambassador Néstor Osorio, President of ECOSOC for 2013, addresses the opening of the Council’s high-level segment (© UN / Anne-Laure Lechat)