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RIM boss to represent private sector on UN panel

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CIOL Bureau
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TORONTO, CANADA: Jim Balsillie, co-CEO of BlackBerry maker Research In Motion (RIM) based at Waterloo near here, was on Monday appointed to a United Nations panel to study globally sustainable economic growth.

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Balsillie joins India's Environment Minister Jairam Ramesh, Finnish President Tarja Halonen and South African President Jacob Zuma among 21 members appointed to the UN Secretary-General's High-Level Panel On Global Sustainability.

The BlackBerry boss is the only member from the private sector on the panel which has representatives from rich and poor governments and civil society.

To be co-chaired by the Finnish and South African presidents, the panel will help formulate a new vision for sustainable growth in view of the growing crisis of climate change. It will submit its report in December 2011 - ahead of the UN Conference on Sustainable Development scheduled to be held in early 2012.

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"I have asked the panel to think big...The time for narrow agendas and narrow thinking is over," UN chief Ban Ki-moon said at the UN headquarters in New York Monday while unveiling the new panel.

The UN chief said the panel will have suggest ways to lift people out of poverty while tackling climate change and ensuring that economic development is environmentally friendly.

"In short, we need a new blueprint for a more livable, prosperous and sustainable future for all," the UN secretary general said.

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