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SDGs call for Bold policies, innovative solutions: Amina

Development 2024-07-09, 9:54am


Amina Mohammed, UN Deputy Secretary-General, addresses the opening of the High-level Political Forum 2024. UN Photo-Loey Felipe

8 July 2024 - The international community must urgently summon the commitment and investments needed to achieve the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) by the 2030 deadline, the UN Deputy Secretary-General stressed on Monday.

Addressing the opening of the 2024 High-level Political Forum on Sustainable Development (HLPF), Amina Mohammed called for transformative actions and bold policies to address pressing global challenges such as poverty, food insecurity and climate change.

“Although the greatest challenges before us are daunting, together we can overcome them, achieve the peaceful, prosperous and sustainable future that all people not only need but deserve,” she told delegates assembled at the UN Headquarters, in New York.

2024 Forum

Under the auspices of the Economic and Social Council (ECOSOC), the theme this year focuses on eradicating poverty through sustainable, resilient, and innovative solutions amid a host of crises.

Running through 17 July, the Forum will review progress towards Goal 1 on ending poverty, Goal 2 on zero hunger, Goal 13 on climate action, Goal 16 on peaceful and inclusive societies, and Goal 17 on strengthening means of implementation.

On the calendar are Voluntary National Review (VNR) Labs, where countries voluntarily report on their progress towards achieving the SDGs, the challenges they face and their plans to overcome them. Several side events and exhibitions are also organized on the HLPF’s margins.

Focused discussions

Also addressing the Forum, Paula Narváez, President of ECOSOC, highlighted the challenges faced by developing countries, particularly conflict-affected areas, stressing the need for peace and stability.  

She emphasized that the agenda includes local and regional actions, insights from regional forums, key intergovernmental discussions and 37 countries presenting their VNRs. The Forum’s general debate will bridge last year’s SDG Summit to this September’s Summit of the Future.

“It will be a space to present transformative actions and initiatives related to monitoring the Summit on Sustainable Development Goals in 2023, while also sharing priorities and expectations” for the upcoming summit, Ms. Narváez said.

She also stressed the importance of inclusive participation, particularly of youth and marginalized groups, and the cross-cutting nature of gender perspective for achieving sustainable development.

Moment to reflect...

Ms. Mohammed highlighted the importance of reflecting on how to make progress towards the 2030 Agenda, in the context to the eagerly awaited Summit of the Future.

“The Summit is a once-in-a-generation opportunity to mend eroded trust and demonstrate that international cooperation – human solidarity in the face of opportunity but also threats – can carry us forward,” she said.

In that context, she noted the special event on SDG Acceleration, next Monday, which will dive deeper into specific investments needed and showcase country-level examples of action.

...and find solutions

Further in her remarks, the Deputy Secretary-General highlighted the multifaceted challenges facing the global community, from poverty to climate change – from war to gender-based violence.  

The deeply sobering fact that less than one fifth of the SDGs are on track should be unacceptable for all of us, she stressed.

“But it is also fixable…this is what this Forum is about – finding the solutions and the political will to turn our words into actions in the lives of people in the billions,” she said, telling delegates:

“Your presence, energy and ambition tell me that, although the greatest challenges before us are daunting, together we can overcome them, achieve the peaceful, prosperous and sustainable future that all people not only need but deserve.” – UN News