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Marcos highlights climate crisis, emerging tech and inequality in UNGA debut

Kaycee Valmonte - Philstar.com

MANILA, Philippines — At the 77th session of the United Nations General Assembly, the Philippines identified four challenges the international community must respond to and collaborate on, which include the climate crisis and inequality. 

President Ferdinand “Bongbong” Marcos Jr. delivered the national statement at the UN Headquarters in New York on Tuesday (Wednesday, Manila time). It was the president’s first appearance before the international community. 

Marcos highlighted four of the world’s challenges that the international body needs to address: 

  • In behalf of the Philippines, the chief executive called on industrialized nations to cut their greenhouse gas emissions and to provide climate financing and technology transfer for developing countries and other nations vulnerable to the climate crisis. 
  • Government structures need to adapt to the creation of new technologies. While its development is transforming lives, the Philippines notes that there is much the world needs to understand about these transformations and that “they could also disrupt our political and social orders.”
  • The Philippines notes the widening geopolitical polarities and sharpening strategic competitions. Marcos said there is a “profound lack of trust” that is affecting the international community’s multilateral system. 
  • Injustice brought by inequality, which was further exacerbated by the COVID-19 pandemic. 

The Philippines called on fellow member states to “reinvigorate the world economy.” 

“We must use public and private resources to encourage the expansion of trade, investment, and technology transfers to accelerate development.  Knowledge and intellectual gains must flow freely to allow those lagging behind to catch up,” Marcos said before the UNGA.

“Sustainable development will be hampered, to the detriment of all, if existing structures in the global economy remain unreformed.”

FULL TEXT: Marcos' speech at the 77th United Nations General Assembly

Aside from these, here are other points Marcos raised in his speech: 

  • Solidarity among the international community to achieve national goals. "The achievement of our national ambition requires a global environment that creates conditions that allow all nations, including ours, to thrive in peace," Marcos said.
  • As nuclear weapons remain an existential threat, the Philippines called on the international community to remain committed to decreasing the global supply of all nuclear weapons. The Philippines earlier promoted the use of nuclear energy for other peaceful means instead.
  • A call to end to incidents of racism and Asian hate. The Philippine Consulate in New York earlier reminded Filipinos under its jurisdiction to remain vigilant after an increase in Asian hate crime since the pandemic broke out in 2020.
  • Citing the country’s success in the Bangsamoro Autonomous Region of Muslim Mindanao, the Philippines is asking other UN member states to support its bid for a seat at the UN Security Council for the 2027 to 2028 term. 
  • The Philippines said more investments in food security and education are needed to achieve sustainable solutions for the planet. 
  • Member states were encouraged to feed and cater to their young population’s curiosity, especially for science. 
  • Marcos also touted that his administration “is prepared” to make investments to help workers adapt to the challenges of the Fourth Industrial Revolution. He also raised that the world’s development agenda should consider the displacement of human labor as more technologies take the place of workers, calling on member states to prepare by creating support for sectors that will be affected.

BONGBONG MARCOS

UNITED NATIONS

UNITED NATIONS GENERAL ASSEMBLY

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