XAVIER ESPOT ZAMORA, Head of Government of Andorra, observed that, although the United Nations has achieved great progress in many areas, the path that lies ahead is a long one. Rich countries have insisted on their privileged position, hoarding vaccines and deepening inequality, he pointed out, calling on the international community for cooperation and resource mobilization to meet the challenges presented by COVID-19. Vaccines are the most powerful tool in the fight against the pandemic, but they will remain ineffective if all people don’t have access to doses. Vaccine inequality will lead to a catastrophic moral failure if the solution is only partly applied, he stressed.
The climate challenge also must be viewed collectively, he went on to say, emphasizing that the upcoming COP26 will be the last opportunity for the most powerful economies to make climate commitments. Turning to food system security, he underscored that it was possible to reconcile with nature with solutions that promote the production of healthy food and science‑based, green sustainability.
On peace and security matters, he observed that the world was seeing worsening crises because of poverty, climate change and a reduction of international aid. The United Nations has mechanisms to alleviate the effects of such crises, but must enhance efforts at prevention. Education is a human right, one of the main catalysers of sustainable development, and the best way to change societies and protect the planet, he said. Turning to gender parity, he emphasized the importance of including women and girls in decision‑making, stressing that the empowerment of women cannot be reversed by the pandemic.
On climate change mitigation, he reported that Andorra has accepted the terms of the Paris Agreement and is working to achieve its goals. To that end, his country is promoting renewable energy and the use of natural products and resources to avoid material losses. In response to the effects the pandemic had on its tourism sector, Andorra is rebuilding it as a sustainable vector of the economy, he said.
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