There is an urgent need to accelerate the implementation and financing of the Sustainable Development Goals. Otherwise, we will never achieve the objectives of Agenda 2030 by 2030. That’s what Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Finance and Development Cooperation Alexander De Croo says at the start of the SDG Summit in New York, in which he is participating together with H.M. Queen Mathilde.
Four years after major agreements on the 17 Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) and the Addis Ababa Action Agenda on their financing, today Heads of State and Government are reviewing the implementation of the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development in New York. The aim is to provide political guidance and identify actions to accelerate implementation.
All the reports already agree: progress is insufficient and the challenges are considerable. UN Secretary-General Guterres wants more ambition and concrete measures. Along with the Climate Action Summit, this should be the starting point for a decade of ambitious action.
More ambition, more multilateralism
Together with H.M. Queen Mathilde, who will give a speech at Columbia University as UN SDG Ambassador, Minister De Croo also argues for a more ambitious approach that is supported globally:
“No single government can reach the SDGs on its own and governments alone will not be able to respond to all challenges. The active engagement of the private sector, civil society and engaged citizens is crucial to move to a sustainable and inclusive economy”.
In addition to a joint commitment, our country also argues for building bridges between the various SDGs, between the climate and financing agenda. Agenda 2030 must be an inclusive agenda with an eye for the most vulnerable, gender equality and the emancipation of women and girls.
Belgium wants to set a good example. Two years ago, we were among the first group of countries to present their “Voluntary National Review”. Our commitment to Agenda 2030 also reflects from the 2018 SDG Index and Dashboards Report, which ranked Belgium twelfth in the implementation of the sustainable development agenda.
In addition to the SDG Summit, Minister De Croo will also have numerous bilateral contacts over the next few days to emphasize Belgium’s commitment to the SDGs. He will thus meet UNDP Administrator Achim Steiner, UNICEF Director Henriette Fore and Global Fund Director Peter Sands.