Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas (Source: AFP/VNA)
Addressing the ceremony, Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas stressed: "I am pleased to take over today the chairmanship of the Group of 77 on behalf of the Palestinian people and the State of Palestine."
"It is a great responsibility that the State of Palestine will bear with complete humility, sincerity and dedication," he added.
Egypt's Foreign Minister Sameh Shoukry handed the gavel to President Mahmoud Abbas at the ceremony.
UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres told the G77 that its leadership in 2018 "proved once again to be a central force in demonstrating that multilateralism is the only way to address our shared challenges."
In 2019, he said, climate action must be in the forefront of efforts to end poverty, reduce inequality and transition "to more inclusive and sustainable economies."
The Group of 77 (G77) at the United Nations is a coalition of 134 developing nations, designed to promote its members' collective economic interests and create an enhanced joint negotiating capacity in the United Nations.
There were 77 founding members of the organization, but by November 2013 the organization had expanded to 134 countries (including China). Since China participates in the G77 but does not consider itself to be a member, all official statements are issued in the name of the Group of 77 and China.
The group was founded on June 15th, 1964, by the "Joint Declaration of the Seventy-Seven Countries" issued at the UN Conference on Trade and Development (UNCTAD). The first major meeting was in Algiers in 1967, where the Charter of Algiers was adopted and the basis for permanent institutional structures was begun./.