I am grateful to have the opportunity to speak at the Least Developed Countries Annual Ministerial Meeting.
We have heard from many distinguished speakers today how the COVID-19 crisis is de-railing hard won development gains, especially in the Least Developed Countries.
The social and economic impacts of the pandemic for LDCs could be devastating. And we all know that the LDCs are particularly vulnerable to disasters and shocks.
Global solidarity has never been more important.
We need bold, and committed, multilateral cooperation and support.
The good news is: We know what needs to be done.
The 2030 Agenda is our joint roadmap to respond to the pandemic, and to recover better.
There can be no doubt that the needs of the Least Developed Countries must be placed at the forefront of our common efforts.
In this common endeavour, Norway will continue to be a strong voice and advocate.
We will advocate for debt relief, for increased ODA, and for trade agreements to be made more inclusive and sensitive to the needs of LDCs.
We are increasing our level of development assistance to LDCs, and we encourage others to do the same.
We believe in a greater focus on: Business-relations, the transfer of technology, and mobilizing and investing in the main resource in all countries: the people.
There is so much potential in clever, dedicated and ambitious people who want to be drivers of development and build their countries.
There is so much hope and possibility in LDCs to build back better. And we - who pledge to contribute – must be solid and reliable long time partners in these efforts.
In closing, I would like to extend my sincere thanks to H. E. Minister Mkaka, Minister of Foreign Affairs of Malawi for bringing us together at this crucial time, and for Malawi’s dedicated efforts as Chair of the Least Developed Countries.