This morning, the Danish Minister for Development Cooperation, Christian Friis Bach and the Secretary of State Alva Baptiste from Saint Lucia succeeded in gaining support from 105 countries on a strong statement before the Rio+20 summit next week.
The two were chairing the ACP-EU ministerial meeting in Vanuatu, where government representatives from 105 countries adopted a joint declaration on several important and sensitive issues, which still lack agreement in the negotiations leading up to Rio +20.
The new alliance consists of African, Caribbean and Pacific countries as well as the EU member states. They agree to develop global sustainability goals on the green economy and to develop stronger global organisations - first and foremost a strong international environmental organisation and an organisation that can monitor countries progress towards sustainable development.
Christian Friis Bach is very pleased that countries in very different situations and with diverse starting points can come together on strong common interests:
"A strong joint statement by an alliance of 105 rich and poor countries sends a significant signal to the Rio negotiations at this juncture," he says.
He notes in particular that poor countries also have a strong will to strengthen and develop a green economy:
"The joint statement stresses that a growing number of poor countries no longer see the development of a green economy as a limitation, but instead as an opportunity to create sustainable growth and new jobs. It gives new optimism," he said.