Speeches

Ms. Shamshad Akhtar (center), Executive Secretary of the United Nations Economic and Social Commission for Asia and the Pacific at the Asia-Pacific Forum on Youth Volunteerism to Promote Participation, Development and Peace held a UN ESCAP in Bangkok, Thailand on 28 October 2014. 
Photo Credit: UN ESCAP
28 Oct 2014

Today we celebrate young people and their capacity to embody the values of volunteerism, while reaffirming our commitment to a better future for them and our future generations. A dynamic youth agenda is vital to ensure the success of post-2015 sustainable development. Volunteerism can lead the way; it can build capacity and enhance understanding of how all people matter.

Ms. Shamshad Akhtar, Executive Secretary of the United Nations Economic and Social Commission for Asia and the Pacific speaks at the 69th commemoration of UN Day in Seoul, Republic of Korea on 24 October 2014. 
Photo Credit: UN ESCAP
24 Oct 2014

It is an honor and a pleasure to join you today to celebrate the 69th United Nations Day in Seoul. I also want to use this opportunity to offer our warm congratulations to the Republic of Korea on the 60th anniversary of its membership of the United Nations Economic and Social Commission for Asia and the Pacific (ESCAP). The Republic of Korea’s development history during its 60 years with ESCAP has been an incredible journey, which deserves special recognition and celebration.

Official Photo of Ms. Shamshad Akhtar, Under-Secretary-General of the United Nations & Executive Secretary of the Economic and Social Commission for Asia and the Pacific (UN ESCAP Photo/Suwat Chancharoensuk)
11 Sep 2014

To achieve sustainable development, regional economic cooperation and integration, as well as regional connectivity and the key development other priorities of Asia and the Pacific, we must transform the Commission and the secretariat so they are both “fit for purpose.”

Official Photo of Ms. Shamshad Akhtar, Under-Secretary-General of the United Nations & Executive Secretary of the Economic and Social Commission for Asia and the Pacific (UN ESCAP Photo/Suwat Chancharoensuk)
3 Sep 2014

There was a noticeable shift in focus from the time of the Barbados Programme of Action to the Mauritius Strategy, which moved the SIDS development dialogue towards implementation. With the outcome of Rio+20, and now the SAMOA Pathway, there is another shift taking place – towards real action. The SAMOA Pathway spells out some key roles for the regional commissions in support of sustainable development in the Pacific, and we will respond with vigor and concrete actions.

18 Aug 2014

Gender inequality is a distinct, pervasive and cross-cutting barrier to equitable, inclusive and sustainable development in Asia and the Pacific. Gender-specific obstacles disproportionately limit access to education, healthcare, financial markets, and productive employment opportunities for women and girls.

Ms. Shamshad Akhtar, United Nations Under-Secretary-General and Executive Secretary of the Economic and Social Commission for Asia and the Pacific, delivering her welcoming remarks and policy statement at the opening of the Ministerial Segment of Phase II of the 70th Session of the Commission on 7 August 2014 in Bangkok, Thailand.
Photo Credit: UNESCAP/Suwat Chancharoensuk
8 Aug 2014

The 70th session of the Commission has been a great success. In spite of challenging circumstances, which required us to conduct the session in two phases, we have seen wide-ranging deliberations and real progress made on understandings about critical development priorities.

Ms. Shamshad Akhtar, United Nations Under-Secretary-General and Executive Secretary of the Economic and Social Commission for Asia and the Pacific, delivering her welcoming remarks and policy statement at the opening of the Ministerial Segment of Phase II of the 70th Session of the Commission on 7 August 2014 in Bangkok, Thailand.
Photo Credit: UNESCAP/Suwat Chancharoensuk
7 Aug 2014

Women, men and children in every corner of our region look to their leaders for a better future. No country can meet those needs alone. The foundation of the United Nations success is that we do better together. This is why I will use my first Policy Statement today to make the case for your support for an even stronger ESCAP. I will start by outlining the scope of our regional challenges and opportunities, and then talk about the changes we are making to the Commission to better support your development priorities.

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