In a related development, Ambassador of Suriname to the UN, His Excellency Mr. Henry Mac Donald, was today also elected to chair the Third Committee, making this the first time that two Caribbean Community (CARICOM) representatives will chair Main Committees of the General Assembly during the same session.
The General Assembly body stated:
"The Assembly today elected Guyana's Permanent Representative to the United Nations, Ambassador George Talbot, by acclamation to chair the Economic and Financial Committee (Second Committee). Ambassador Talbot is the first Representative of a CARICOM Member State at the United Nations to hold the position."
The Second Committee, which deals with a wide range of development matters, will have a full agenda of issues to consider, among them: macro-economic policy questions, sustainable development issues, including follow-up to the Rio+20 conference, challenges associated with poverty eradication, globalization, international migration and development, and the situation of countries in special circumstances such as Least Developed Countries, Landlocked Developing Countries, and Small Island Developing States.
(Video: UN promo for upcoming 67th UNGA meeting, 2012)
Guyana’s priorities for the upcoming session will include a focus on: food security and agriculture, poverty eradication, climate change related issues, and the developmental impact of inequalities both within and across countries as well as on greater effectiveness and efficiency in the conduct of the work of the Committee.
During Guyana's tenure, the Committee will also undertake the first quadrennial comprehensive policy review of the UN's operational activities for development. Ambassador Talbot was nominated and endorsed for the post by CARICOM and by the Group of the Latin American and Caribbean States (GRULAC) which include 33 countries, equaling 17% of all UN members.
Ambassador Talbot, who holds a Bachelor's degree in Modern Languages from the University of Guyana and a Master’s degree in International Relations from the Fletcher School of Law and Diplomacy at Tufts University, is a career diplomat with vast experience in multilateral affairs.
This year's gathering of the UN's world body of 193 nations will is set to convene in New York City on September 18, and will run for two weeks. According to earlier voting, Serbia's Vuk Jeremić was elected president of the United Nations General Assembly; and Jamaica was chosen as the first seat in the General Assembly Chamber meaning they will lead the chamber in order of speeches.
(This article first appeared in Demerara Waves.)