Lao DPR joined the Group of Friends of Sustainable Transport

Lao People's Democratic Republic announced its accession to the Group of Friends of Sustainable Transport, established on July 6, 2022, at the initiative of Turkmenistan. The last 3rd meeting of the Group was convened on May 10, 2023, via a virtual platform.

Background information

The United Nations Group of Friends for Sustainable Transport (GFST) was launched on July 6, 2022, by the Permanent Mission of Turkmenistan to the United Nations at a meeting attended by more than 90 representatives of the United Nations Member States. The GFST is an informal coalition of UN member states to raise awareness of the importance of sustainable transport and to exchange ideas and views, and best practices on this agenda at the global, regional and national levels.

The GFST conducts its activities with the following aims:

  • Facilitate the exchange of views regarding the implementation of specific UN General Assembly recommendations and guidelines in the area of sustainable transport;
  • Contribute to achieving the 2030 SDGs and Vienna Programme of Action for LLDCs in the area of sustainable transport;
  • Support UN activities in the framework of the Global Climatic Agenda (UN FCCC) and New Urban Agenda (UN-HABITAT) with respect to green transport, sustainable mobility and low-carbon cities of the future;
  • Share views on existing problems and solutions on regional transport networks;
  • Promotion of best training programs in the area of transport policies, development of the first comprehensive manual of transport diplomacy;
  • Promotion of innovative mechanisms of investments for transport infrastructure development;
  • Organise different events with the participation of the leading global corporations on the most critical issues of global supply chain management.

The Group upholds the following format and working methods:

  • The Group of Friends has an informal, open-ended nature, and, accordingly, its composition shall be regularly updated, as United Nations Member States, Observers of the General Assembly of the United Nations and the United Nations entities indicate their willingness and interest in joining it;
  • The Group of Friends shall meet regularly, at least every six months, at the ambassadorial level in New York. Extraordinary meetings can be convened to discuss specific questions, at the request of its members;
  • The Group of Friends meets once a year at the level of Foreign Ministers at a pre-agreed venue;
  • The Group of Friends will be coordinated by two co-chairs (Turkmenistan and any member country willing to co-chair) for a term of one year and, upon completion of that term, the principle of geographical rotation will be observed for the transfer of the coordination.

Note: Countries and international organizations could join the Group of Friends by sending diplomatic notes or letters of intent.

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