President William Ruto, while co-chairing the United Nations General Assembly Sustainable Development Goals dialogue, emphasized the urgent need for the international community to direct resources towards overcoming obstacles hindering the achievement of Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).
President Ruto's call resonated strongly as he highlighted the critical role of global capital in fostering climate-positive growth and unlocking Africa's vast potential.
Addressing the United Nations General Assembly's Sustainable Development Goals dialogue on Applying Science and Technology Innovation and data for transformative action, President Ruto pinpointed the challenges faced by many countries, particularly in Africa, in their pursuit of SDGs.
He cited issues such as debt burdens, inflation, climate-related shocks, and conflicts as significant impediments to progress.
"By enhancing Africa's access to financing from global development capital, we will unlock the continent's vast potential; its natural resources, arable land, and vibrant human capital," President Ruto stated unequivocally.
The President's remarks were made in the presence of his co-chair, Slovenia President Nataša Pirc Musar, underscoring the importance of international cooperation in tackling these global challenges.
Prior to this engagement, President Ruto actively participated in the United Nations General Assembly's High-Level Political Forum on Sustainable Development, reaffirming Kenya's commitment to advancing the SDGs.
In a breakfast meeting hosted by the United Arab Emirates UAE Mission to the United Nations, President Ruto engaged with a distinguished group of global leaders, including Microsoft founder Bill Gates, Former Mayor of New York City Mike Bloomberg, President of the International Union for Conservation of Nature Razan Al Mubarak, CEO of Crescent Enterprises Badr Jafar, CEO of BlackRock Larry Fink, Zimbabwean businessman Strive Masiyiwa, and Dr Mo Ibrahim.
During this gathering, President Ruto advocated for reforms in the global financial architecture, focusing on debt restructuring and enhancing International Financial Institutions (IFIs).
He argued that these changes would empower nations in the global south to take meaningful action in both climate initiatives and development efforts.
"By eradicating unjust discrimination, we will foster shared prosperity and pave the way for the achievement of our climate action objectives and a sustainable future," President Ruto asserted.
Furthermore, the President joined an agricultural forum titled "Bridging the Gap: Financing Africa's Agricultural Growth," co-hosted by the United States Agency for International Development (USAID) and the Royal Norwegian Ministry of Foreign Affairs.
Notable figures such as Borge Brende, President of the World Economic Forum, US Secretary of Treasury Janet Yellen, and USAID administrator Samantha Power were present.
President Ruto stressed the urgency of expanding agricultural productivity in Africa to combat hunger and poverty, pointing out that the continent possesses a significant amount of unused arable land.
He stated, "The account of Africa's starvation amid plenty is parallel to the account of Africa's poverty in the midst of resource abundance and underdevelopment in the middle of plentiful potential."
In addition to these engagements, President Ruto held bilateral talks with several Presidents and heads of government, including the President of Albania Bajram Begay, who expressed interest in opening an embassy in Kenya to explore areas of cooperation.
Slovakia President Zuzana Caputova committed to supporting Kenya's E-mobility initiatives and collaborating on fertiliser production and cybersecurity capacity.
Prime Minister of Denmark Mette Frederiksen pledged support for peace initiatives in the Horn of Africa, while Sweden's Prime Minister Ulf Kristersson, Kosovo President Vjosa Osmani, and Gambia Vice President Muhammad Jallow also engaged in talks to strengthen bilateral relations with Kenya.
President Ruto's active participation in these critical discussions reflects Kenya's commitment to addressing the barriers obstructing the path to Sustainable Development Goals and fostering a brighter, more sustainable future for all.