President of Russia Vladimir Putin: Mr Secretary-General,
Let me first of all thank you for coming to the St Petersburg International Economic Forum at our invitation. I hope you find it to be a constructive and useful event. Your presence also gives it a special status, and I want to thank you once again for that.
We are satisfied with our constructive relationship with the UN and its specialised organisations. As a founding member of the United Nations, as a permanent member of the Security Council, we support — you know that, you know our position — strengthening the central role of the UN in international affairs.
We can see how much effort you put into making the Organisation efficient and active, to responding effectively to the challenges of our time, and for our part, we will do everything to support you.
UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres: First of all, thank you very much for your kind invitation. It was for me an enormous pleasure to come again to the St Petersburg Forum.
It is for me a very important opportunity to address the distinguished international audience – both government, businesses, society in general – on issues that are vital for the United Nations, in particular, in this forum context: the sustainable development goals and the possibility of a fair globalisation.
I would also like to underline the very important role that Russia plays in supporting multilateralism and in supporting the UN. Support that is even more important in the difficult times we are living.
And as you rightly said, as a founding member, permanent member of the Security Council, Russia is an absolutely indispensable actor on the international scene today, if we want a more balanced world. And I am also extremely grateful for the very intense consultations that it has been possible to maintain with the Government of the Russian Federation and the mission on both the different crisis situations around the world, from Syria, to Libya, to the Central African Republic, to Yemen, but also on central issues, horizontal issues of concern for us all, from trade to climate, to the questions of terrorism and other dimensions of both peace and security in the government.