18 June 2014,
Vientiane Capital - United Nations (UN) Resident Coordinator and United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) Resident Representative, Ms. Kaarina Immonen, presented her credentials to the Deputy Prime Minister, Minister of Foreign Affairs, His Excellency Dr. Thongloun Sisoulith, at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs on 18 June, 2014.
“The United Nations and the Lao PDR have a long history of successful cooperation, and I feel privileged to be part of the continuation of this strong relationship, particularly at this crucial stage of the country’s development.” Ms. Immonen said.
Photo credit: UNDP Lao PDR/Daniel Hodgson
The Resident Coordinator commended the Government for its accomplishments under the current 7th National Social-Economic Development Plan (NSEDP) and the country’s overall progress in development, especially in regard to the substantial reduction in poverty in the last two decades. She went on to emphasize the importance of the next period for the country in order to successfully achieve its development targets, including the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) and graduation from the Least Developed Country (LDC) status.
Ms. Immonen said that Lao PDR can be proud of what has been achieved to date, including the vast improvements in the standards of living and advances in the service delivery, but that the Government and the international community will need to work closely together on the off-track MDGs to ensure sustainable and equitable growth in the country. “For its part, the United Nations in the Lao PDR will continue to dedicate itself to this accomplishment”, she said.
Ms. Kaarina Immonen began her career in the United Nations in 1990. Her most recent appointment before her arrival to Lao PDR was as Deputy Special Representative of the Secretary-General for the UN Integrated Peacebuilding Office in the Central African Republic, a post she held from December of 2012 to early this year. Kaarina also served as Resident Coordinator and Humanitarian Coordinator during her time in the Central African Republic. Prior to that posting, Ms. Immonen was the UN Resident Coordinator and UNDP Resident Representative in the Republic of Moldova, with earlier appointments as UNDP Deputy Resident Representative in the Russian Federation and in the Republic of Georgia. Before this, she was the Assistant Resident Representative in Cambodia and a Programme Officer in Vietnam.
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