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End of first four-year SDG review cycle: accelerated action needed

IPIECA attended the United Nations High-level Political Forum (HLPF) which took place in New York, USA from 9-19 July. 2019 marks the end of the first four-year cycle of the HPLF mandate to review the 17 Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) and assess progress towards achieving the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development (2030 Agenda).

Each year, a set of goals are selected for in-depth review alongside Goal 17 ‘Strengthen the means of implementation and revitalize the Global Partnership for Sustainable Development’ which is a standing item discussed every year. This year’s focus goals were:

  • SDG 4 (Quality Education)
  • SDG 8 (Decent Work and Economic Growth)
  • SDG 10 (Reduced Inequalities)
  • SDG 13 (Climate Action)
  • SDG 16 (Peace, Justice, and Strong Institutions)

Voluntary National Reviews (VNRs) were presented by 47 countries during the Ministerial Segment, bringing the number of VNR’s submitted to 142 countries.

The key message coming out of the Forum was that global response to implementing the SDGs has not been ambitious enough, and that transformational action was needed to deliver the SDGs in time. UN Secretary-General, António Guterres, said four years after the 2030 Agenda was adopted, the picture was discouraging and he invited governments to ‘kickstart a decade of delivery and action’.

The attention now turns to the SDG Summit in September. On 24-25 September, the HLPF, under the auspices of the UN General Assembly, will assess progress achieved so far since the adoption of the 2030 Agenda in September 2015. This will mark the year before a decade is left to achieve the 2030 Agenda, and there is a clear expectation for the Summit to mark the start of a ‘decade of action’.

See IPIECA's work on the SDGs.


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