Delegate: Mr Deutinger
59. Mr. Deutinger (Germany), speaking as a youth delegate, said that recent meetings with young Germans had identified three priorities that they would like the United Nations to focus on. The first, youth participation, meant involving young people in the entire decision-making process, beginning with the definition of relevant issues and ending with the implementation and evaluation of real policies. The youth participation component of the World Programme of Action for Youth lacked clear indicators for measuring success or failure; also, a legal framework defining the co-decision process needed to be established. In Germany, youth-led organizations played a crucial role as a bridge between young people and government policies and international negotiations, and received public funding.
60. The second priority was international migration. The industrialized countries required economic [*9*] migration to deal with the challenges arising from demographic change, but they regulated migration in terms of their own economic interests. That one-sided approach, allowing access only to specialized labour, neglected an important source of human capital. Migration should be understood as an opportunity rather than a threat to society. The lack of opportunities in developing countries, exacerbated by the recent crises, had a major impact on young people and children and should be given priority on the international youth agenda.
61. The third priority was sustainable development and, in that regard, the role played by civil society had increased significantly since the 1992 Rio Summit, especially through volunteer programmes. The private sector also had a role to play and should be obliged to implement sustainable development standards at all levels, including fair labour standards. Nevertheless, such efforts could only be successful if politicians set the right course.
62. Young people demanded a comprehensive view of policies, rather than a perspective limited to the next elections. Furthermore, education, both formal and informal, for sustainable development was a key element in generating awareness and changing attitudes. Current political decisions would shape the world in which today’s youth would become tomorrow’s adults; accordingly, their increased participation was needed.
UN Doc.: A/C.3/66/SR.3