UNCTAD at the General Assembly 2022

16 September 2022

The UN trade and development body joins governments and international organizations gathered in New York to tackle interlocking and complex global crises and to support developing countries.


UN Photo | First plenary meeting of the 77th session of the UN General Assembly.

At the United Nations General Assembly (UNGA) in New York, UNCTAD will help mobilize support for measures to counter the interconnected and complex crises creating a “perfect storm” that is battering the world and deepening inequalities.

The theme of this year’s UNGA, “A watershed moment: Transformative solutions to interlocking challenges”, reflects the critical situation the world faces.

UNCTAD Secretary-General Rebeca Grynspan will take part in key events at the 77th session of the UNGA to bolster support for the policy recommendations of the UN Global Crisis Response Group (GCRG).

The GCRG was established by UN Secretary-General António Guterres to address the global food, energy and financial crises triggered by the war in Ukraine. UNCTAD co-leads the workstream on finance and coordinates the work of all three workstreams.

The three-dimensional crisis is hitting a world already reeling from the effects of the COVID-19 pandemic and the climate emergency and accelerating a cost-of-living crisis not seen in a decade.

At the UNGA, UNCTAD will advocate for trade and development policies that support developing countries.

The organization will call for measures that increase liquidity and provide debt relief, so developing countries can provide safety nets for the poorest and most vulnerable. It will advocate for support for climate mitigation and adaptation financing for developing countries.

Finding global solutions

On 18 September, the UNCTAD Secretary-General will speak at the inaugural Global Africa Business Initiative, organized under the leadership of UN Deputy Secretary-General Amina J. Mohammed to place the continent in its proper spot on the world stage – as a driver of global business with a $2.5 trillion market opportunity.

On 20 September, Ms. Grynspan will address the Global Food Security Summit, joining dozens of world leaders to tackle the food crisis leaving nearly a fifth of humanity at risk of poverty and hunger.

She will join world leaders to identify solutions to shorter-term causes of the crisis, such as the shortage of grains and fertilizers caused by the war in Ukraine. The forum will also tackle longer-term threats to food security, such as the vulnerabilities of some food systems to the effects of climate change.

On 22 September, she will give a keynote address to the Global Maritime Forum’s Annual Summit, which will gather hundreds of representatives from shipping companies, ports, agribusinesses and other key players of the global supply chain.

The maritime industry, which carries more than 80% of world trade and plays a major role in global food and energy systems, has suffered severe disruptions due to the global pandemic and the war in Ukraine, and faces increasing climate-related threats, including rising sea levels and more extreme weather.

Ms. Grynspan will provide UNCTAD analysis on the vital challenges facing the industry and join leaders in finding solutions to ensure maritime transport continues providing populations around the globe with the food, energy and other products they need each day.

The UNGA opened on 13 September in New York and will run until 23 September. It is the first time the UNGA has been held in person since the outbreak of the COVID-19 pandemic.