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United Nations Department of Economic and Social Affairs Sustainable Development


SDG 6 Reference — General Debate 75th Session of the United Nations General Assembly

Statement by His Excellency Mr. Wilfred Elrington, Minister for Foreign Affairs of Belize


It is worthy of note that, pre-COVID-19 Belize was contending with economic decline caused by ongoing climate impacts such as a prolonged drought and its impact on primary sector output, along with continued challenges caused by sargassum inundation on our marine spaces. Then on September 4, Hurricane Nana struck us inflicting another blow to our beleaguered agricultural sector.

Truly we are presently caught in the cross hairs of two grave crises with hardly more than our own limited natural resources and our determination to survive to bolster our position.


The tragedy of COVID-19 is symptomatic of the tragedy of the commons. We are pushing our planetary boundaries beyond what is sustainable for humanity, threatening our own health as much as that of the earth. This is occurring on land and in the ocean. Our recovery from COVID-19 is an opportunity to accelerate our recovery from the unsustainable use of planetary resources and build our resilience to future shocks.


In recognition of this crisis, Belize has joined the Leader’s Pledge for Nature which sets out urgent actions to be taken within the next decade to “put nature and biodiversity on a path to recovery by 2030”.

I invite all to join the Leader’s Pledge, and endorse its actions as a part of our global commitment to the UN Decade for Action on Sustainable Development.

As is evident from the foregoing actions, our objective whether it is in recovering better, increasing climate ambition, or reversing biodiversity loss, is to safeguard the sustainable development agenda.


My country as Chair of the AOSIS therefore calls for a SIDS Compact for Access to Finance with specific policy options that would address: ~ liquidity, solvency and enable a green, resilient recovery for SIDS ~ efficient access to finance as well as increased mobilization and expanded provision of concessionary and grant based finance ~ innovative sources of finance and facilitated private sector engagement for SIDS; and ~ Increased access to climate finance to address imminent needs of SIDS for adaptation and to address loss and damage as a result of irreversible impacts of climate change

This SIDS Compact is for all small island developing states, no matter where we fall on the anachronistic development chain. Any barrier that results in exclusions must be eliminated. 


View the full statement here: 


*The information reflected on this page has been quoted directly from the official statement presented by this Member State at the General Debate 75th Session. The information does not imply the expression of any opinion whatsoever on the part of the Secretariat of the United Nations.