H.E. Hao Ping, President of Peking University
H.E. Wei Xiaodong, Head of Organization Department of the CPC Beijing Municipal Committee
H.E. Lu Yan, Vice Mayor of Beijing
H.E. Wang Shiting, Ambassador of People’s Republic of China to the Swiss Confederation
H.E. Bernardino Regazzoni, Ambassador of Switzerland to the People’s Republic of China
Mr. Alain Dehaze, CEO of The Adecco Group
Distinguished Guests, Ladies and Gentlemen,
It is my great pleasure to join you this afternoon, on behalf of the UN Country team in China, and accept this invitation to speak at the China-Europe Talent Forum for 2020. At the outset, I would like to acknowledge the organizers of today’s important event for bringing us together to discuss how we attract and develop future talent in the decade to come.
We come here today against the backdrop of the continued global disruption wrought by the COVID-19 pandemic, and the subsequent health and economic shocks created by this once-in-a-century crisis. As we strive to respond and recover from this pandemic and the many vulnerabilities and inequalities it has exposed, we must as the UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres put it – “reimagine the way nations cooperate”.
Today’s forum serves as a timely reminder, that when we begin to reopen borders around the world that we embark on a new path towards more inclusive globalization. Let us ensure today that we promote the free flow and exchange of talent that brings benefits to nations, influential or otherwise, talent which will allow us to better prepare for future crises, natural disasters and public health emergencies such as COVID-19.
Despite these uncertain times, the work of the UN continues as we mark our 75th anniversary in a crucial year for our planet. The Sustainable Development Goals set out in the 2030 Agenda, remain our roadmap to ensure we accelerate sustainable solutions to the world’s biggest challenges. With just ten years to go in achieving the SDGs, to end poverty, beat back climate change and tackle inequality in this the “Decade of Action”, the UN continues to call for the action of individuals, governments and the private sector alike in mobilizing on delivery of the SDGs.
In this spirit and as part of our 75th anniversary, the UN launched the “UN75” initiative to build a global conversation on how we build back better and promote greater cooperation around responding to global challenges. Turning 2020 into a year of dialogue, the UN has launched discussions from the boardroom to the classroom, building partnerships with businesses and civil society to ensure the reach of as many people as possible, and placing a strong emphasis on the online engagement of audiences, particularly younger generations.
Youth, for their unique voices and actions, are not merely the leaders of tomorrow but the decision-makers of today. This reality became only more apparent when the UN system in China in working with our national partners, launched the “Youth Dialogue on the Future” series this summer, as part of our efforts on the ground on UN75 and the Decade of Action on the SDGs.
In response, over 700,000 young people in China shared their interests in presenting proposals and ideas for a more sustainable future. These dialogues featured hundreds of youth representatives communicating virtually with UN officials from 12 UN entities in China on a host of issues, from comprehensive sexuality education to artificial intelligence and the future of work, with over 47 million people viewing these dialogues series online. Throughout the series, the future talent of China profoundly impressed us all with their innovation and creativity.
These younger generations inherit an uncertain future amid a Fourth Industrial Revolution. With the trends towards increased automation and the adoption of new and emerging digital technologies, let us not forget the importance and role of human capital in our economies and societies. Echoing this, I look forward to discussions in today’s forum organized under the central theme of “Sharing Together, Growing Together, Winning Together – Building a New Governance System for Global Talents Flow”.
The UN system in China will continue to reach out to our key stakeholders on the adoption of new technologies in the engagement of younger generations and future workforces on critical global issues. I hope that everyone here today, from the public to the private sector, commits to continuing this journey with the UN as partners, in building a more sustainable, inclusive tomorrow.
I wish every success to today’s participants for a fruitful forum as we work to tackle the challenges of the day and build on new opportunities that leave the world a better place.
I thank you for your kind attention.