The Secretary General of the United Nations, António Guterres, asked in his speech at the Davos Forum that the United States and China stop promoting with their growing division what he calls the “Great Fracture”, which, according to experts, could cost the the global economy 1.4 trillion dollars.
“We risk a disconnection of the two largest economies in the world, a rift of tectonic dimensions that could create two trade regulations, two dominant currencies, two internet networks and two conflicting artificial intelligence strategies,” Guterres warned in his speech before economic and political leaders.
“There are many ways China-U.S. ties diverge, particularly on issues of human rights and regional security, but it is possible and essential that they engage together on climate action, trade, and technology to avoid that disconnect, and even the possibility of a future confrontation,” he said.
Guterres also called on China and the US, along with the rest of the G20 countries as major emitters of greenhouse gases, to unite around a climate pact that includes additional efforts to not exceed the limit of 1.5 degrees of Increase in the average temperature of the planet.
KEY DECADE AGAINST CLIMATE CHANGE
The battle to maintain that limit set in the Paris Agreement “can be won or lost in this decade, and for the moment we are losing it,” warned the head of the UN, who recalled that at the current rate this century will exceed 2.8 degrees of increase, “with devastating consequences”.
“Parts of our planet will become uninhabitable, and for many this will be a death sentence,” said Guterres, who echoed recent revelations, according to which the Exxon oil company already knew in the 1970s that we were headed for the climate change but did nothing to stop it.
“As happened with the tobacco industry, they tiptoed by their own scientific conclusions, they maintained a big lie, and now those responsible have to be held accountable, as those of tobacco once did,” he declared.
Guterres drew a gloomy world panorama, hit by several simultaneous crises: with many countries on the verge of recession, inflation, economies still not recovered from the pandemic, and conflicts such as the one in Ukraine that “not only causes untold suffering for Ukrainians but also It has profound global implications.”
MULTIPLE CRISES IN A DIVIDED WORLD
“All of these challenges are interconnected, stacked up like a multi-car wreck, and would be hard to find a solution to in better times, especially now that the world is far from united and instead lives enormous levels of geopolitical division and great mistrust,” he summarized.
The secretary-general also called for reforms of a global financial system that “systematically denies debt relief and support financing to vulnerable countries that desperately need it.”
He asked the global private business sector to create changes in its models and practices so that they contribute to achieving the sustainable development goals, including “expanding economic opportunities for women”, “achieving equality in the distribution of vaccines” and “ achieve global food security.