Background

The Scientific Outlook on Development takes development as its essence, putting people first as its core, comprehensive, balanced and sustainable development as its basic requirement, and overall consideration as its fundamental approach.

- Hu Jintao (Report to the Seventeenth National Congress of the Communist Party of China, Oct. 15, 2007)

The Party's overall approach is to promote economic development tuned together with political, cultural, social, and ecological progress, and that its general task is to improve the people's livelihoods, make the country more prosperous and achieve the great renewal of the Chinese nation.

- Xi Jinping (Speech at 1st group study of 18th CCP Politburo, Nov. 18, 2012)

China Energy Fund Committee (CEFC), a Chinese non-governmental organization holding special consultative status with the United Nations Economic and Social Council (ECOSOC), is dedicated to fostering international dialogue and understanding of diverse cultural values, regional cooperation, energy security, and issues relating to China’s emerging place in the world.

CEFC shares the principles of the Incheon Communiqué issued on Nov 16, 2012. We acknowledge that national strategies and development plans can serve as effective anchors and reference points for more detailed approaches to address key challenges facing sustainable development.

We hail the call by the United Nations Secretary General for establishing the Sustainable Energy for All initiative which aims to drive actions to achieve universal energy access, improve energy efficiency, and increase the use of renewable energy. Equally we are impressed by the Rio+20 recommendations calling for building platforms for follow up and continuous knowledge exchange, review of good practices, and in-depth case studies from which success stories and lessons learnt can be analyzed and shared.

With these important objectives in mind, CEFC accepted the task of organizing “A China Story: Forum on Sustainable Development and Governance” at the United Nations Headquarters in New York City in April 2013. This one-day event will provide an invaluable opportunity for experience sharing and erudite discussion on cogent issues related to the models of national development and how a developing country, such as China, coped with various global crises in recent years. These included the 2008 financial crisis, climate change and increasing energy consumption, social inequality in under-developed communities, and protection of indigenous cultural diversities.

Following the 18th Congress of the Chinese Communist Party last November which elected Xi Jinping as the new Party Secretary-General, along with a new team of top leaders in China, the Chinese National People’s Congress held in Beijing this March announced a series of new policies and initiatives. The world eagerly awaits learning more about the direction and thinking China will pursue as it continues along the road of sustainable development. In light of this, it is particularly timely and meaningful that this Forum is being held, just one month after the Chinese National People’s Congress has unfolded China’s plans for the future.

The Forum consists of a series of presentations describing the Chinese experience in pursuit of a sustainable future, which, in the modern Chinese context, has five pillars: effective governance, prosperous economy, dynamic culture, social justice, and environmental protection. Discussions and presentations of successful as well as not-so-successful stories of how China rose to the challenges, and reviews of the lessons gained, could serve as valuable references for other developing states to consider. Since the Forum will center on an in-depth case study of modern China in its quest to attain “the future it wants”, CEFC proposes that its guiding theme should be “A China Story: Forum on Sustainable Development and Governance”.

It is also proposed that the Forum will be attached to an official thematic debate on “United Nations and Global Economic Governance” (refer to Appendix II), hosted by the President of the General Assembly scheduled on April 15. This would denote the readiness of the United Nations to serve as the multi-stakeholder platform for its formulation, with the capacity to undertake the broad-based consultations required and with the goal of contributing to the formation of a global development agenda that all countries and all stakeholders will recognize as their own.

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