BBC NEWS Americas Africa Europe Middle East South Asia Asia Pacific
BBCi NEWS   SPORT   WEATHER   WORLD SERVICE   A-Z INDEX     

BBC News World Edition
 You are in: UK: Politics  
News Front Page
Africa
Americas
Asia-Pacific
Europe
Middle East
South Asia
UK
England
N Ireland
Scotland
Wales
Politics
Education
Business
Entertainment
Science/Nature
Technology
Health
-------------
Talking Point
-------------
Country Profiles
In Depth
-------------
Programmes
-------------
BBC Sport
BBC Weather
SERVICES
-------------
EDITIONS
Monday, 2 September, 2002, 10:37 GMT 11:37 UK
Tony Blair's speech in full
Here is a full transcript of Tony Blair's speech to the World Summit On Sustainable Development in Johannesburg:


We know the problems. A child in Africa dies every three seconds from famine, disease or conflict.

We know that if climate change is not stopped all parts of the world will suffer. Some will even be destroyed.

And we know the solution - sustainable development.


This summit can and will make our world change for the better.

So the issue for this summit is the political will.

We know one other thing: The key characteristic of today's world is its interdependence. Your problem becomes our problem.

One country's war becomes another country's asylum seekers. One country's pollution becomes another country's floods.

Summit success

We have begun to act. A decade on from Rio, for all the sneering about summits, those who took part then can point to the real progress there has been: millions more children educated; millions more with safe drinking water; millions more lifted out of poverty.

Rio, of course, did not deliver everything, neither will Johannesburg. No summit can.

But this summit can and will make our world change for the better.

Today I restate Britain's commitment to play our full part. Development for us is a priority, Africa for me is a passion.

Proud of our leadership on debt relief, we know there is more to do.

Proud of the extra resources we are giving to aid and development, we want to give more in the future and we will.

Proud that we will meet, indeed exceed, our Kyoto targets, we know we must do more.

New direction needed

There are certain specific agreements this summit can deliver: on poverty; on education; on fish stocks; on chemicals; on sanitation; on bio-diversity.

But beyond that, this summit has to set a clear direction for the future for our world.


This is not charity, it is an investment in our collective future

We must open up our world trade and that must include the developed world opening up its markets to the developing world, especially for agriculture.

It then means sustainable and fair development - globalisation with justice to ensure that the benefits are spread to every nation in the world.

It means driving through the partnership with Africa.

I can tell you that Britain will raise by 2006 its commitment to development aid to Africa to 1bn a year and its overall levels of assistance to all countries by 50%.

This is not charity, it is an investment in our collective future.

Energy calls

Of course, poverty damages the poor most but it also deprives the whole of the world of the benefits of the industry and the talent of poor nations and their people.

It also means changing the way we consume resources, particularly energy.

And it means the world, the whole world, facing up to the challenge of climate change.


Poverty and environmental degradation, if unchecked, spell catastrophe for our world.

Kyoto is right and should be ratified by all of us. But Kyoto only slows the present rate of damage.

To reverse it, we need to reduce dramatically the level of pollution and let us at least start to set that direction.

Mr President, none of this is easy. The short term clashes with the long term, there are painful decisions, vested interests, legitimate anxieties.

But the facts remain. The consequences of inaction on these issues are not unknown. They are calculable.

Poverty and environmental degradation, if unchecked, spell catastrophe for our world. That is clear.

My politics, like the politics of many of you, is founded on the belief that we are all of equal worth.

Healing African 'scar'

Yesterday, in some of the poorest parts of Mozambique, I saw children every bit as bright as children in affluent Britain, full of potential, full, despite all the challenges, of hope, but their life chances stunted by poor health, poor housing, poor education. poor sanitation.

Those children need not and must not face the challenge alone.

If Africa is a scar on the conscience of our world, the world has a duty to heal it. Heal it we can and we must.

So the decisions taken here will bear directly on the lives of those children. Let us be sure that we make the right decisions.

We know the problems. We know the solutions. Let us together find the political will to deliver them.


Key stories

SPECIAL REPORT

TALKING POINT

AUDIO VIDEO
See also:

02 Sep 02 | Africa
01 Sep 02 | Business
01 Sep 02 | Politics
28 Aug 02 | Africa
28 Aug 02 | Africa
28 Aug 02 | Archive
Internet links:


The BBC is not responsible for the content of external internet sites


E-mail this story to a friend



© BBC ^^ Back to top

News Front Page | Africa | Americas | Asia-Pacific | Europe | Middle East |
South Asia | UK | Business | Entertainment | Science/Nature |
Technology | Health | Talking Point | Country Profiles | In Depth |
Programmes