International symposium on sustainable development
21 May, 2012
AusAID's Director General, Peter Baxter (left) at the symposium with Mr Sha, the Secretary-General of the upcoming UN Rio+20 Conference on Sustainable Development in Brazil in June. Photo: UNIC
Experts from around the world met in Brisbane on 14-15 May to identify ways to make development more sustainable.
Ministers from developed and developing countries, heads of United Nations agencies, parliamentarians, academics, the private sector and non-government organisations attended the United Nations High-Level Symposium on Development Cooperation.
United Nations Department of Economic and Social Affairs Under-Secretary-General Sha Zukang and Parliamentary Secretary for Climate Change and Energy Efficiency, Mark Dreyfus, opened the event.
'We share many of the challenges and opportunities faced by other resource-rich countries in balancing the economic, social and environmental dimensions of Australia’s development. The symposium provided an opportunity to share the successes and lessons we have learnt with others.' Mr Dreyfus said.
'Much of the wealth of developing countries comes from natural resources and while this natural wealth has helped millions out of extreme poverty, resources need to be used sustainably to have an enduring economic and social impact,' he said.
Those attending the symposium agreed on new ways of working together on sustainable development, including:
- exploring innovative ideas to break away from ‘business as usual’ financial models of aid and development cooperation
- building on successes to help countries to bring together economic, environmental and social aspects of sustainable development
Mr Sha, who is serving as the Secretary-General of the upcoming UN Rio+20 Conference on Sustainable Development in Brazil in June, said development cooperation is essential to help countries achieve sustainable development.
The symposium forms part of the preparations for the 2012 United Nations Development Cooperation Forum meeting being held in New York on 5-6 July and the outcomes will also contribute to Rio+20 and post-2015 UN development agenda discussions.
Rio+20 United Nations Conference on Sustainable Development (external website)
Mark Dreyfus, Parliamentary Secretary for Climate Change and Energy Efficiency: Symposium speech
Last Reviewed: 21 May, 2012