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Foreign Affairs Ministers of the Region Highlight Relevance of ECLAC’s Proposals at the End of its Biennial Meeting in Mexico

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27 May 2016|Press Release

Authorities praised the proposals of the Commission’s document “Horizons 2030: Equality at the Centre of Sustainable Development,” and acclaimed the establishment of the Forum of the Countries of Latin America and the Caribbean on Sustainable Development.


Photo of the closing ceremony of ECLAC's 36 session
Mexican Minister of Foreign Affairs, Claudia Ruiz Massieu, presided over the Dialogue of Ministers of Foreign Affairs and high-level authorities and the closing ceremony of ECLAC's 36 session.
Photo: Adrián Orozco/SRE

The thirty-sixth session, the most important biennial meeting of the Economic Commission for Latin America and the Caribbean (ECLAC), ended today in Mexico City with a Dialogue of Ministers of Foreign Affairs and high-level authorities, who highlighted the relevance of the Commission’s proposals to advance towards a change in the development pattern based on a progressive structural change and a big environmental push, and praised the approval of the Forum of the Countries of Latin America and the Caribbean on Sustainable Development.

The closing day of the meeting counted on the participation of Ministers of Foreign Affairs, Trade and other high-level authorities from eight countries (Colombia, Cuba, Guatemala, Honduras, Mexico, Panama, Peru and Saint Kitts and Nevis) and ECLAC’s Executive Secretary, Alicia Bárcena.

In her role of President of the session, the Secretary of Foreign Affairs of Mexico, Claudia Ruiz Massieu, took over in the name of her country ECLAC’s Presidency for the next two years.

The authorities welcomed the proposals and integrated development approach presented by ECLAC in its document Horizons 2030: Equality at the Centre of Sustainable Development, as well as its conclusions.

The authorities also acclaimed the establishment of the meeting’s 18 resolutions, among them the “Mexico Resolution,” which creates the Forum of the Countries of Latin America and the Caribbean on Sustainable Development, which will be the regional mechanism to follow-up and review the implementation of the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development, including the Sustainable Development Goals  (SDGs) and targets, its means of implementation and the Addis Ababa Action Agenda on financing for development.

“The goals of the 2030 Agenda are ambitious and therefore the efforts to achieve them should be enormous, but we can be optimistic for the achieved agreements. There is coincidence and commitment between the diverse countries and goals that we all share. We should make 2016 a year with concrete results of this agenda,” said Minister Ruiz-Massieu.

On her part, Alicia Bárcena said that “this week has enriched us. The 2030 Agenda is a universal agenda, it is the first time that the United Nations produce something of this nature. It has civilizing proposals that recognize equality and sustainability as guiding principles.

”The dialogue of high-level authorities was attended by Isabel de Saint-Malo de Alvarado, Vice-President and Minister for Foreign Affairs of Panama; Rodrigo Malmierca, Minister of Foreign Trade and Foreign Investment of Cuba; María Ángela Holguín Cuellar, Minister for Foreign Affairs of Colombia; Carlos Raúl Morales, Minister of Foreign Affairs of Guatemala; Ana María Sánchez de Ríos, Minister for Foreign Affairs of Peru; Mark Brantley, Minister of Foreign Affairs and Aviation of Saint Kitts and Nevis; and María Andrea Matamoros, Vice-Minister for Foreign Relations of Honduras.

All participants agreed that the new sustainable development pattern with equality proposed by ECLAC is an unavoidable and practical need these days, considering that past models are exhausted.

In his speech, Cuban Minister Rodrigo Malmierca presented his country’s offer to host the next session of ECLAC (in 2018), a proposal that all the delegates later approved by acclamation.

In her closing remarks, ECLAC’s Executive Secretary thanked the Mexican people and its Government, led by President Enrique Peña Nieto, for hosting this event, which was attended by 41 member states delegations, 13 United Nations’ organizations, funds and international programmes, more than 135 non-governmental organizations, two Vice-Presidents, more than 30 Ministers, 16 Deputy Ministers and Deputy Secretaries, as well as ambassadors and cooperation directors of various nations.

“The chapter that we are writing in this session in Mexico City will sow powerful seeds, seeds of change, of social justice and of equality. We have appropriated a global agenda, with the horizon at 2030, for making it ours, Latin American and Caribbean,” Alicia Bárcena said.

“Today we begin an historic moment for our region. We have approved a Forum of the Countries of Latin America and the Caribbean on Sustainable Development, which will allow us to follow-up and review the 2030 Agenda. All the UN organizations, as well as ECLAC’s subsidiary bodies, will be part of this initiative. It is a visionary resolution because it will accompany us during the next 15 years,” Bárcena added.

Minister Ruiz Massieu coincided that this Forum on Sustainable Development will be essential for the formulation of public policies and ratified Mexico’s commitment to its development and to the 2030 Agenda.

“We have reached a threshold of no return, where sustainable development, inclusion and equality are no longer part of a menu of options but the only path for having a viable future. Change should be structural and prosperity, shared, or it will not be for anyone. Today Latin America and the Caribbean are setting an example. We already have the diagnosis, the tools, the consensus and this week we laid the foundations for the implementation,” Ruiz Massieu said while declaring finished ECLAC’s meeting.


You can follow all the details of the meeting on social media using the hashtags #Horizontes2030 and #Horizons2030.

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For questions related to press coverage, contact:

In Mexico City: María Luisa Díaz de León, Public Information Official, ECLAC’s Subregional Headquarters in Mexico. E-mail:; Telephone: (52 55) 41705665. Cell Phone: (5255) 5416 9297.

In Santiago, Chile: Félix Ibáñez, Officer-in-Charge of ECLAC’s Public Information Unit. E-mail:; Telephone: (56) 22210 2040. Cell Phone: (569) 7 967 8306.