OPENING REMARKS BY H.E. MR NAOTO KAN
I would first like to express my heartfelt gratitude for the fact that more than 300 participants from over 100 countries and 20 international organizations have gathered here at this MDGs Follow-up Meeting today. I would also like to take this opportunity to thank for the warm words of sympathy and generous assistance extended by our friends in the aftermath of the Great East Japan Earthquake. We have never been more grateful for the bonds between people as well as between countries. We, the people of Japan, will never forget the warm consideration extended to us. I would like to express my sincere gratitude once again.
Last September I attended the United Nations Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) Summit. What I highlighted at the Summit was that it is important for people around the world to unite under the single and explicit set of goals compiled as the MDGs in tackling international challenges such as poverty.
Through such measures, Japan will provide the utmost assistance to realize in the world "caring societies" that are considerate of each individual and "robust societies" where people can explore a bright future on their own feet.
As I stated earlier, the people of Japan experienced the cordial "bonds" (Kizuna) with the international community. This has made Japan all the more determined to act with the rest of the world and contribute to the achievement of the MDGs. Thus, I hereby reconfirm my unwavering determination to continue to faithfully implement the international commitments we have made, including the "Kan Commitment."
Before concluding, I would like to express, once again, our profound appreciation for the "strong bonds" (Kizuna) and "cordial friendship" extended to us by all of you and the other members of the international community. So how can we genuinely reciprocate such bonds and friendship?
I believe there is only one thing we can do.
The only way is for us to get through this time of difficulty and regenerate Japan into an even better country. It is to make Japan a country that can contribute even more to the international community. I am convinced that this is the way to truly return the favor.
Everyone in Japan wishes to repay the act of friendship in this manner.
I conclude my remarks by reiterating my heartfelt welcome to you all.
Thank you very much for your kind attention.