Joint Communiqué: IBSA Dialogue Forum, New York, 27 September 2018
1. The Minister of External Affairs of the Republic of India, H.E Ms. Sushma Swaraj, the Minister of External Relations of the Federative Republic of Brazil, H.E Mr. Aloysio Nunes Ferreira, and the Minister of International Relations and Cooperation of the Republic of South Africa, Ms. Lindiwe Sisulu, met in New York on 27 September 2018, on the margins of the 73rd Session of the United Nations General Assembly.
2. Commemorating the fifteenth anniversary of its formal launching, the Ministers underscored the importance of the principles, norms and values underpinning the IBSA Dialogue Forum, including participatory democracy, respect for human rights and the rule of law. In mapping out the strategic outlook of IBSA, the Ministers reiterated the need for IBSA to leverage its strengths and unique identity as a grouping of the Global South, bringing together three large pluralistic, multi-cultural and multi-racial societies from three continents. In the context of today’s dynamic global order, the Ministers underscored the strategic significance of IBSA in safeguarding and advancing the interests of the South on the global stage. They stressed the importance of multilateralism and the need to reform global governance structures in order to make them more inclusive, democratic, representative, transparent and responsive to the needs of the South.
3. The Ministers noted with satisfaction that since the realization of the 8th IBSA Trilateral Ministerial Commission meeting, held in October 2017, in Durban, South Africa, IBSA’s activities took new impulse, with the decision to enhance cooperation based on its three pillars: political coordination in multilateral fora, trilateral cooperation and cooperation with other developing countries through the IBSA Fund for the Alleviation of Poverty and Hunger.
4. They underscored the IBSA Declaration on South-South Cooperation issued in June 2018 in Pretoria in the context of the run-up to the Second High-level United Nations Conference on South-South Cooperation (BAPA+40 Conference), to be held in Buenos Aires in March 2019. They stressed that the aforementioned Declaration provides an unique opportunity for the strengthening of future trilateral cooperation with other developing countries through the IBSA Fund for the Alleviation of Poverty and Hunger. They emphasized the important role played by the IBSA Fund through sharing of developmental experience of IBSA countries and recalled, with satisfaction, the signature, in 2017, of the IBSA Fund Agreement, that will guarantee a steady flow of resources to boost its activities.
5. The Ministers expressed their satisfaction with the regular political consultation held among the three countries missions in Geneva, Nairobi, New York, Paris and Rome on major issues of the international agenda. They reiterated their intention to further deepen and strengthen the IBSA Dialogue Forum and stressed the importance of close coordination and cooperation among IBSA countries in various multilateral fora including the UN, G20, WHO, WTO, WIPO and UNFCCC.
6. The Ministers instructed the Sherpas to intensify activities to enhance the visibility of the IBSA Fund.
The United Nations and Security Council Reform
7. The Ministers reiterated their intention to contribute to safeguarding a fair and equitable international order based on the purposes and principles of the UN Charter. In this regard, the Ministers reiterated that unilateralism impacts negatively on international stability, contributes to uncertainty and undermines national efforts at strengthening constitutionalism and the rule of law.
8. While recalling that international peace and security can be achieved and sustained solely in full respect of international law, particularly the UN Charter, they reaffirmed their commitment to collective efforts for peaceful settlement of disputes through political and diplomatic means. The Ministers recommitted their efforts to build a just, fair, peaceful, inclusive and prosperous world, expressed solidarity and welcomed with appreciation the outcomes of the United Nations General Assembly Peace Summit that took place on 24 September 2018, in New York.
9. The Ministers underscored that no reform of the United Nations will be complete without the reform of the Security Council, including through the expansion of its membership in both permanent and non-permanent categories, in order to ensure adequate representation of developing countries. They affirmed that such a reform is critical for the Council to be able to adequately respond to global challenges. They expressed full support for each other’s candidatures for permanent seats in a reformed and enlarged UN Security Council. The Ministers welcomed the reform proposals of UN Secretary General and encouraged him to address the need for reform in other areas, including ensuring adequate geographical representation in the Secretariat, especially at higher levels, reviewing the funding and backstopping arrangements for special political missions, and strengthening the role of regional commissions.
10. The Ministers emphasized that achieving progress in the ongoing Inter Governmental Negotiations is essential in order to ensure meaningful reform of the UN Security Council. Towards this end, the Ministers called for commencement of text based negotiations in the IGN at the earliest.
11. The Ministers expressed their gratitude to the late Mr Kofi Annan, former Secretary-General of the United Nations for his commitment and contributions to strengthening and promoting the multilateral system of global governance, in the quest to ensuring that the people of this world live in Larger Freedom in accordance with the provisions of the Charter of the United Nations.
Sustainable Development Goals
12. The Ministers discussed common priorities and future collaborative work in contributing to the full and balanced implementation of Sustainable Development Goals and their targets. They noted that the IBSA Fund for Alleviation of Poverty and Hunger plays an important role in supporting projects which contribute to eradicating poverty, in an inclusive and sustainable manner.
13. The Ministers expressed their concern about the consequences of climate change and reaffirmed their commitment to reach a balanced outcome under the Paris Agreement Work Programme in COP-24 that enables its full operationalization and implementation from 2021 onwards, guided by the principles of equity and of common but differentiated responsibilities and respective capabilities. The Ministers urged developed countries to provide sustained, predictable and adequate financing, technology transfer and capacity-building support to developing countries to cope with climate change, in line with their legal obligations under the UNFCCC, its Kyoto Protocol and the Paris Agreement. Ministers emphasized that effective implementation of developed countries’ legal obligations under the UNFCCC, its Kyoto Protocol and its Paris Agreement will be essential for building trust among Parties and to create conditions for the successful implementation of the Paris Agreement. The Ministers reiterate their commitment to strengthen cooperation among IBSA countries, including South-South research cooperation.
14. The Ministers deplored the continued terrorist attacks across the world. They condemned terrorism in all its forms and manifestations wherever committed and by whomsoever and stressed that there can be no justification whatsoever for any act of terrorism. They reaffirmed that those responsible for committing, organizing or supporting terrorist acts must be held accountable. They concurred that terrorism is a global scourge that must be fought and called upon all countries to eliminate terrorist safe havens and infrastructure from all territories under their control, disrupting terrorist networks and their financing channels and halting cross-border movement of terrorists. They reaffirmed their solidarity and resolve in the fight against terrorism. They called upon the international community to establish a genuinely broad international counter-terrorism coalition in accordance with the principles of international law and support the United Nations' central coordinating role in international counter-terrorism cooperation. They recalled the responsibility of all States to prevent and counter terrorism, including the financing of terrorist networks and terrorist actions from their territories. The Ministers called for early finalization and adoption of the Comprehensive Convention on International Terrorism in the UN General Assembly. The Ministers also called for effective implementation of relevant UN Security Council Resolutions and targeted sanctions relating to terrorism.
15. The Ministers recalled that this year we celebrate the 70th anniversary of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, which is an opportunity to emphasize that promotion and protection of human rights and fundamental freedoms can be best pursued through mutual understanding, dialogue and cooperation.
16. The Ministers noted that 2018 marks the Centenary of the birth of the former President of the Republic of South Africa, Nelson Mandela. The Ministers recalled the United Nations General Assembly Resolution 64/13 of 2009 that recognized the values of Nelson Mandela; his commitment to reconciliation, justice, equality, the protection and promotion of human rights, gender equality and the rights of children and other vulnerable groups and acknowledged his contribution to the struggle for democracy internationally and the promotion of the culture of peace throughout the world. The Ministers reaffirmed that the lessons of Nelson Mandela’s life are closely aligned with the common and shared values that underpin the IBSA Dialogue Forum.
17. They reinforced the need for more technical assistance and capacity building so that countries are better equipped to meet the needs of their citizens. In this regard, they underscored that all human rights, including the right to development, should be given the same importance, as these rights are inter-dependent, inter-related and mutually reinforcing. It is important to recognize the right to development as a distinct, universal, inalienable and fundamental human right that is applicable to all people in all countries.
18. Furthermore, the Ministers agreed to strengthen dialogue in the area of human rights in multilateral fora such as the United Nations Human Rights Council, favoring, at all times, non-selective, non-politicized and constructive approaches to human rights challenges in the world under the guiding principles of equality and mutual respect. At the same time, they agreed to continue to support diplomatic solutions to these challenges, based on dialogue, aiming at improving people's lives and preventing further harm in conflict-stricken regions.
19. The Ministers expressed their appreciation for the efforts undertaken by member states and UNHCR in preparing the Global Compact on Refugees. They emphasized the need for more equitable sharing of the burden and responsibility for hosting and supporting the world’s refugees through voluntary contributions while taking account of existing contributions and the differing capacities and resources among States. They also noted that these voluntary contributions will be determined by states based on their national realities, capabilities and levels of development and respecting national policies and priorities. They underscored the need to address the causes for individuals to seek international protection and to strengthen the means to boost sustainable development. They also reaffirmed the importance of the search for durable solutions, the use of complementary legal means of admission, and the fight against xenophobia and discrimination.
20. The Ministers reaffirmed the centrality of the rules-based, transparent, non-discriminatory, open and inclusive multilateral trading system (MTS), as embodied in the WTO. They noted the MTS has contributed significantly to economic growth, development and employment over the past seventy years. The Ministers agreed to make all efforts to strengthen the multilateral trading system and make the WTO more responsive to the needs of its members. They also emphasized that global trade rules should facilitate effective participation of all countries in the MTS and that development must remain integral in the WTO’s work. They underscored the need to continue to make positive efforts to ensure that developing country members, and especially the least-developed country members, secure a share in the growth of world trade commensurate with the needs of their economic development.
Financing for Development
21. The Ministers welcomed the outcomes of the third ECOSOC Forum on Financing for Development (FfD), held at the United Nations Headquarters in New York in April 2018, which reaffirmed the central role of FfD in the implementation of the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development. They emphasized that long term and affordable financing is essential to the achievement of sustainable development in its three dimensions, particularly by developing countries, and that the eradication of poverty and hunger must remain the overarching objective of FfD. The Ministers underlined the importance of cooperation among IBSA member states in order to promote the implementation of the Addis Ababa Action Agenda as well as the outcomes of the Monterey and Doha International Conferences on FfD.
22. In this context, the Ministers recalled the contributions made by the IBSA Fund to the construction of an Indoor Multipurpose Sports Complex in Ramallah, Phase I and Phase II of Setting up of Cardio-Thoracic Unit of Palestinian Red Crescent Society’s Al Quds Hospital in Gaza, Atta Habib Medical Centre in Gaza and Rehabilitation Centre for people with Mental Disabilities in Nablus.
23. The Ministers commended the efforts of the African Union and sub-regional organizations in fostering inclusive growth and sustainable development and maintaining regional peace and security. They underlined that security and development are closely interlinked and mutually reinforcing and key to attaining sustainable peace. They reiterated their support to the African Union’s Agenda 2063 as the appropriate framework to attain the aspiration of a peaceful, prosperous, inclusive and secure Africa, and emphasized the importance of strengthened collaboration between the United Nations and the African Union in accordance with the Charter of the United Nations.
24. The Ministers agreed to enhance coordination and cooperation within the IBSA Dialogue Forum on international and regional issues, and expressed concern over the ongoing conflict and heightened tensions in the Middle-East region, especially with regard to the Israeli-Palestinian situation, the conflicts in the Republic of Yemen and in Syria.
25. The Ministers recalled, furthermore, the importance of all parties to the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA) fully complying with their obligations and welcomed the efforts to achieve the complete denuclearisation of the Korean Peninsula.
Sectoral Cooperation - Defense
26. The Ministers expressed their satisfaction with the preparations for the 6th edition of the IBSAMAR naval exercise, to be held in October, and for the IBSA Joint Defence Working Group meeting, in South Africa. They emphasized their importance as a positive example of trilateral cooperation in defense and confirmed the continuity of these activities as well as the exploration of new initiatives with great potential in that field.
27. The Ministers reaffirmed their full support to India with its preparations to host the 6th IBSA Summit of Head of States and Government in 2019.