The flag raising ceremony for UNCTAD XIII, marking the moment when the Conference site officially becomes United Nations territory for the duration of the Conference, took place this morning at the Qatar National Convention Centre in Doha, Qatar.
Speaking at the ceremony, H.E. Dr. Hamad bin Abdulaziz Al-Kawari, Minister of Culture, Arts and Heritage, Qatar, expressed his belief that during the Conference “great thoughts” would be shared, and “profound words” spoken so that “great deeds” can result, leading to prosperity for all peoples. The raising of the UN flag alongside the Qatari flag is “a symbol of the confidence of the international community in our country” and its leading role, he said.
UNCTAD XIII is an opportunity to make development a “real, tangible priority”, said H.E. Ambassador M. Anthony Maruping, President of UNCTAD Trade and Development Board and Chair of the Preparatory Committee for UNCTAD XIII. He expressed firm belief that the participants would be up to their task and the “moral obligation”.
Mr. Kobsak Chutikul, Interregional Adviser at UNCTAD, said that the Conference would be a true “Olympics of development”, bringing together high level participants from all continents, from heads of state to representatives of the world’s poor, “under one big tent of humanity”. As such, the Conference is a “golden opportunity” he said. “Hopes and expectations raised here must be fulfilled”, Mr. Kobsak concluded.