Thai DPM and Minister of Foreign Affairs' Remarks at the Commemoration of the 75th Anniversary of the United Nations

Remarks of H.E. Mr. Don Pramudwinai Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Foreign Affairs at the Commemoration of the 75th Anniversary 26 October 2020

It certainly is an honour and pleasure for me to represent the Royal Thai Government in joining the United Nations family to celebrate the UN Day and commemorate the 75th Anniversary of the United Nations at ESCAP today.

The UN was born in a very uncertain world emerging out of the most devastating war in human history. The founders had put their hopes and dreams in a new world organization that would promote lasting peace and stability, which is here, the UN. Over the years, the UN has become the cornerstone of multilateralism, guided by the principles enshrined in the UN Charter. 

Through the works of the United Nations, millions of lives have been saved, lifted out of poverty and are able to live in dignity, free from want and fear.  It is therefore fitting that in its 75 years, the United Nations and its agencies, funds, programmes and Secretaries-General were awarded the Nobel Peace Prize twelve times, and with the World Food Programme as the newest laureate this year. Now we are talking about the 75 years of the UN, and next year it will be the turn of Thailand [for] our partnership with the UN for 75 years as well.

The year 2020 has been particularly challenging. In this era of disruption where multilateralism is under threat, compounded by the global COVID-19 pandemic and accelerating climate change, new and old problems simultaneously demand our attention. The world needs a strong UN to deliver creative “new normal” solutions.

As we celebrate this historic anniversary of the United Nations, I would like to share some ideas about how we can build on our past achievements and effectively address pressing global and regional challenges together. 

The COVID-19 pandemic is our most daunting challenge at hand. It is hampering our progress on the Sustainable Development Goals in the Asia-Pacific. Science, technology and innovation (STI) will play a key role in post-COVID-19 recovery plans. We should therefore enhance collaboration on STI, while ensuring that scientific advancement and resource mobilization, especially on the COVID-19 vaccine, can be accessed or access by all groups. 

For innovation to bear fruit, appropriate technologies that are suited to national circumstances must be prioritized. Social and technological innovation should be combined. In this regard, Thailand draws strength from the Sufficiency Economy Philosophy, or SEP in short, bestowed by His Majesty King Bhumibol Adulyadej the Great. The Thai government and private sector alike resort to SEP as a guide to inventing creative solutions for our socio-economic problems, with an aim to promoting sustainability and resilience from within. 

In past decades, Thailand had partnered with the United Nations for national socio-economic development. We have shared locally-driven best practices, including the SEP, with United Nations agencies and other countries through South-South cooperation. As we look to the future in the common pursuit of the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development that leaves no one behind, mobilizing and empowering all stakeholders especially women, and youth, will be truly a game-changer. 

Thailand is immensely proud to be the host country to ESCAP and a regional hub for United Nations agencies. The United Nations’ regional presence has provided platforms for exchanges and coordination that have advanced the development agenda. Even today, as the platforms have gone virtual in response to COVID-19, they continue to provide a vital focus for joint efforts to build back better. Thailand remains committed to regional cooperation and to working constructively with the United Nations in the spirit of multilateralism. 

And in marking UN Day and commemorating 75 years of the United Nations, let us recommit to the common ideals as well as the future promise of concrete actions. Let us assert ownership of a multilateral institution that is responsive and “fit for the purpose,” so as to allow us to face upcoming uncertainties with confidence. And meanwhile, “we the people” should keep on strongly our partnership for peace and prosperity for the good of our planet and that is essence of the global agenda 2030 for 5P.

I thank you very much, and Happy United Nations Day. Thank you again.


Speech by
Don Pramudwinai
Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Foreign Affairs of Thailand
UN entities involved in this initiative
United Nations