The National People’s Congress (NPC) of China will donate USD 1 million to the IPU for its work on countering terrorism and violent extremism within the framework of a joint project with the United Nations Office for Drug and Crime (UNODC), and the United Nations Office of Counter-Terrorism (UNOCT). IPU Secretary General Martin Chungong and NPC Standing Committee Secretary General Yang Zhenwu signed the agreement on this donation today at the Great Hall of the People in Beijing.
The money will go towards developing a parliamentary response to countering terrorism, including cyber-terrorism and extremism conducive to terrorism. It will also support the High-Level Advisory Group on Countering Terrorism and Violent Extremism, set up to serve as the global focal point for parliamentary activities in this area.
The IPU Secretary General was in Beijing for an interregional conference on building parliamentary capacity and the further implementation of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), which takes place in Beijing from 12 to 14 June 2019. The conference, organized by the IPU and the NPC, is the fourth in the series and is aimed at fostering cooperation between parliaments on the SDGs. During the conference, participants will discuss issues such as agricultural development, scaling up nutritional standards, creating jobs for rural youth, empowering women and building inclusive economies in developing countries.
Speaking at the conference, the IPU Secretary General Martin Chungong thanked the NPC for the financial support provided to the Organization, saying their support made it possible to hold seminars such as the present one. Mr. Chungong emphasized the importance of parliaments in achieving the Goals “through their ability to turn the voluntary commitment to the SDGs into enforceable laws, to hold their governments to account on development policy choices and strategies.” He warned that according to data from the United Nations, no country was on track to achieve the SDGs. “Extreme poverty is still rife, inequality is stuck at very high levels, hunger is on the rise, global climate is changing much faster than expected. We need to do things differently to make a difference, and political commitment and an inclusive approach are imperative in this regard.”
The opening of the seminar was presided over by the Vice Chairman of the Standing Committee of the National People’s Congress Ding Zhongli, who expressed China’s commitment to stronger ties with the IPU. He stressed the importance of cross-regional exchanges in helping parliaments contribute effectively to the achievement of the SDGs. China was pleased to share its experience in lifting millions of Chinese from poverty yearly.