The President of the Republic of Cuba, Miguel Díaz-Canel Bermúdez, in his capacity as President Pro Tempore of the G-77 + China Group, convened a Summit of Heads of State and Government under the theme “Current Development Challenges: Role of Science, Technology and Innovation”, on 15 and 16 September 2023, in Havana.
According to a message posted this morning on his Twitter account, the Head of State said that “the occasion should serve to strengthen our unity and decide on collective and practical actions to effectively face contemporary challenges”.
With the warm welcome that they deserve and that we are enthusiastic to lavish on them, he said, we will be receiving in Havana all the leaders of the Group of 77 and China. “Every minute counts in the search for solutions to the pressing problems of our peoples,” he said.
In line with the theme to be discussed at the Summit, Díaz-Canel considered that “scientific and technical progress, which is key to achieving sustainable development, is, however, inaccessible to a large part of humanity”. The causes, he stressed, lie in the unjust international economic order, which has exacerbated the socio-economic and scientific-technical marginalisation of many countries and within them, with serious consequences for the nations of the South.
The Cuban leader, in his call to the meeting, considered it a paradox that “science, technology and innovation were at the forefront of the response to the COVID-19 pandemic, while its benefits were unattainable for the most needy”.
Changing this scenario, he stressed, requires building a fairer relationship and a truly democratic and inclusive order that privileges international solidarity and cooperation.
“The members of the Group of 77 and China, who together represent 80 % of the world’s population and more than two thirds of the membership of the United Nations, are urged to do just that,” he added.
Cuba assumed the Pro Tempore Presidency of the Group in January of this year, which was the first time that the Caribbean island has led this negotiating bloc of developing countries. The G77 + China, which came into being in June 1964, is the largest and most diverse grouping in the multilateral sphere, with 134 member states.
During this year, Cuba has hosted important events related to the G77+China, including meetings of the Group’s Ministers of Education, Culture and Tourism.