UNITAR Co-organized the 2017 Ambassadorial Retreat for the Group of 77 and China, Geneva

The panel of the 2017 Ambassadorial Retreat of the Group of 77 and China2 June 2017, Geneva, Switzerland – As part of the close relationship between the United Nations Institute for Training and Research (UNITAR) and the Group of 77 and China, UNITAR co-organised and funded the half day 2017 Ambassadorial Retreat at the InterContinental Hotel in Geneva on 2 June 2017, bringing together the Group`s diplomatic community and several key note speakers.

Mr. Nikhil Seth (left), Executive Director of UNITAR during his opening remarksThe organization of the Retreat was a close collaboration between UNITAR, the United Nations Conference on Trade and Development (UNCTAD) and the United Republic of Tanzania, represented by its Excellency Dr James Alex Msekela who is also the current Chairman of the Group of 77 and China, Geneva.

The objective of the Retreat was to advance the thinking on the strategic direction of the Group of 77 and China in the years ahead, especially as member states implement the mandate in the Nairobi Maafikiano of reinvigorating UNCTAD`s intergovernmental machinery, and as the Group celebrates the 50th anniversary of the Charter of Algiers. Further discussions were held in regards to the establishment of an assessed annual contribution as well as the implementation of the so called `Developedia project`.

The welcome remark was given by the Chairman of the Group of 77 and China, Geneva followed by opening remarks from Dr Mukhisa Kituyi, Secretary General of UNCTAD and Mr. Nikhil Seth, Executive Director of UNITAR. Mr. Nikhil Seth pointed out UNITAR`s commitment to the long-lasting partnership with the Group of 77 and China.

Participants of the Ambassadorial RetreatCore to the Retreat were the key note speeches that focused on current pressing issues:

  • Development challenges in a global context by Mr. Richard Kozul-Wright, Director, Division on Globalization and Development Strategies (GDS), UNCTAD
  • Development finance issues and the FfD follow-up process by Ms. Stephanie Blankenburg, Head, Debt & Development Finance Branch (GDS), UNCTAD
  • Cross-cutting trends and challenges to development by Vicente Paolo YU, Deputy Executive Director; Coordinator, Global Governance for Development Programme, the South Centre

The Retreat hosted 125 participants, comprised of representatives of the Group of 77 and China diplomatic community, UNCTAD and UNITAR staff. The Retreat was concluded with an Ambassadorial lunch that aimed to be a platform for individually held discussions on points addressed during the Retreat and for networking in an informal setting.

UNITAR is committed and willing to continue its partnership with the Group of 77 and China. UNITAR looks forward to providing various forms of capacity building across many disciplines for the Group of 77 member states and China to further foster multilateralism to tackle and overcome together pressing development issues.


Photo 1: The panel of the 2017 Ambassadorial Retreat of the Group of 77 and China

Photo 2: Mr. Nikhil Seth (left), Executive Director of UNITAR during his opening remarks

Photo 3: Participants of the Ambassadorial Retreat