Remarks Delivered at ECOSOC Briefing on Our Common Agenda

Ambassador Lisa A. Carty
U.S. Representative to the Economic and Social Council
New York, New York
March 22, 2022


Thank you, Mr. President, and thank you, Mr. Secretary-General, for your briefing.

It is a privilege to be addressing this body for the first time as the new U.S. Representative to ECOSOC. I look forward to working with all of you to advance our shared goals and to craft a more nimble and resilient multilateral system.

During the informal consultations on the Common Agenda, the United States consistently affirmed the OCA report’s powerful vision for a more secure, inclusive, and prosperous future—grounded in the full implementation of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).

Integrated and indivisible, the SDGs offer a shared vision for prioritizing action and mobilizing resources for sustainable development, and this year’s HLPF will be critical to advancing our work.

We commend the Common Agenda’s focus on advancing gender equality and the full and meaningful participation of women. Mr. Secretary-General, you yourself have said, “It is women and girls who face the greatest threats and deepest harm.” We encourage a similar focus on the inclusion of all marginalized and vulnerable groups in our efforts.

We also applaud the Secretary-General’s encouragement of Member States and stakeholders to implement the Paris Agreement and take action on the climate crisis, which will also help address ever-growing food insecurity and mass migration. We underscore the need to maintain a clear focus on global health and pandemic recovery so we can all move forward together.

As we gather today to discuss the Secretary-General’s vision, we cannot turn a blind eye to Russia’s aggression in Ukraine, which is a blatant violation of the UN Charter. This unfolding crisis makes clear that we urgently need new mechanisms to effectively grapple with emergencies, including wars, pandemics, or climate-induced disasters. Effective multilateralism is dependent on our collective ability to respond quickly, efficiently, and deliberately.

The report presents many proposals, and it will be important to identify priorities where the UN has a comparative advantage. We must respect current legal obligations, leverage existing programs, ensure proposals are discussed in the appropriate fora, respect mandates of other international organizations, and understand our fiscal challenges. In short, we must be deliberate and strategic in our approach in order to succeed. We look forward to partnering with the High-Level Advisory Board on Effective Multilateralism to build on the ideas in the Common Agenda.

Mr. President, Mr. Secretary-General, the United States pledges to work with you and our fellow Member States and stakeholders to ensure that the UN and the core values it represents can endure.