Biden: ‘We must work together as never before’

President Biden speaking while standing behind lectern (© Evan Vucci/AP Images)
President Biden tells the U.N. General Assembly September 21 that the United States is dedicated to working with other nations to address global challenges. (© Evan Vucci/AP Images)

The United States is committed to working with partners to tackle global challenges and advance a more secure and prosperous future, President Biden told world leaders.

Speaking to the U.N. General Assembly on September 21, Biden said the world faces a “decisive decade” and must join forces to end the COVID-19 pandemic, advance global health security, tackle the climate crisis and build a better future for everyone.

“Our security, our prosperity, and our very freedoms are interconnected, in my view, as never before,” Biden said. “And so, I believe we must work together as never before.”

The United States is committed to the U.N. founding principles of protecting human rights and dignity, Biden said, noting those values brought greater peace and prosperity late in the 20th century and remain vital today.

“The United States is ready to work with any nation that steps up and pursues peaceful resolution to shared challenges,” Biden said. He called America’s commitment to partnership “fully consistent with the United Nations’ mission.”

To tackle the climate crisis, Biden urged nations to bring their “highest-possible ambitions” to the U.N. Climate Change Conference starting October 31 in Glasgow. He announced his administration is seeking to again double funding to help developing countries fight climate change. In partnership with other donors, the increase will help mobilize $100 billion in public and private sector funding, Biden said.

Biden also highlighted U.S. work with COVAX, the international partnership dedicated to ensuring equitable access to vaccine doses around the world. The United States has provided more than $4 billion for COVAX and donated more than 160 million vaccine doses to other countries. The donations are part of a U.S. pledge to give away more than 1.1 billion vaccine doses to developing countries with no strings attached.

To spur global economic recovery, the United States and other Group of Seven nations — Canada, France, Germany, Italy, Japan and the United Kingdom — are supporting infrastructure projects in developing countries. Projects under the Build Back Better World Partnership will address host countries’ needs, employ local workers and follow high labor and environmental standards, Biden said.

The United States will also commit $10 billion to end hunger worldwide.

Biden said the United States and its democratic partners will seek to ensure artificial intelligence, quantum computing and other emerging technologies support democratic values rather than enable repression.

“The future will belong to those who embrace human dignity, not trample it,” he added. While the United States is not perfect, Biden said the country will strive to live up to its ideals. “Democracy remains the best tool we have to unleash our full human potential.”