United NationsDepartment of Economic and Social Affairs Sustainable Development

Group of 77 & China

Mr. Chairman,
I have the honor to deliver this statement on behalf of the Group of 77 and China.
Adequate and affordable transportation networks empower people to move, communicate and exchange goods and services.
The expansion of transport infrastructure and transport services in developing countries is, therefore, crucial to eradicate poverty and achieve the internationally-agreed development goals, including the MDGs.
Clearly, in the 21st century it is difficult to conceive and realize sustainable development without affordable, easily accessible and environment friendly means of transportation.
Developing countries face considerable barriers and challenges in harnessing adequate and affordable transportation means and networks.
Over and above the chronic underinvestment in transportation infrastructure and technological constraints, the new millennium poses a new array of challenges that further aggravate the intensity and urgency of the existing ones.
Firstly, the global financial crisis has severely impacted investment flows for infrastructure development in developing countries;
Secondly, the current economic downturn has triggered a squeeze in demand for transport services;
Thirdly, increased volatility in global energy prices, driven by speculation in the markets has further undermined growth potential of this sector;
Fourthly, the financial constraints faced by developing countries in moving towards more modern vehicle fleets is also a continuing concern;
Last but not least is the need to respond to pollution and climate change and to respect local social and environmental conditions where transport projects are implemented.
Mr. Chairman,
The Group of 77 and China recall that, in the Johannesburg Plan of Implementation, the consideration of transport falls under the Chapter on changing unsustainable patterns of consumption and production. It is always useful to recall that Paragraph 14, which opens this section, calls for all countries to promote sustainable patterns, with developed countries taking the lead and all countries benefiting from the process, taking into account the Rio Principles, including the principle of common but differentiated responsibilities.