International Community Must “Set Sights Higher” On Development – Post-2015 agenda must leave no one behind, panel hears

Jul 9, 2014

Helen Clark speaking at a panel event on transitioning from the MDGs. Photo: Dylan Lowthian/UNDP

UNDP Administrator Helen Clark today said there was “substantial unfinished business” on the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs), which must be carried through to next development agenda set to succeed them in 2015.

Speaking at a panel discussion, Miss Clark said that while the 2014 MDG Report released earlier this week showed a lot of progress, that progress had been “uneven”. Many around the world continued to live in extreme and degrading poverty, she added.

With just over 500 days to go before the MDG deadline, Miss Clark called on the international community to make the most of the time remaining to accelerate progress and build resilience within countries to sustain results already achieved.

Noting that the MDGs had inspired global action because they were “few in number, clear in objective and easily measurable”, Miss Clark said the transition to the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) should draw upon the lessons of the MDG experience and make the best use of structures and frameworks already in place for accelerating progress.

As the MDG “scorekeeper” at the national level, UNDP had partnered widely with developing countries, the panel heard. Building on this experience, and given sufficient resources, UNDP planned to work with governments to set baselines for the post-2015 agenda, and identify gaps to be addressed.

Elsewhere, Miss Clark highlighted the particular success of the MDG Acceleration Framework (MAF) in Tanzania, where it prompted the expansion of a social safety-net programme to cover 1 million of the poorest households by 2015, against an original target of 220,000 households by 2017. Strong support of the World Bank for the MAF process and action plans was “very important”, she said.

Results such as those achieved in Tanzania were the outcome of a an unprecedented partnership of actors, and countries were increasingly using the Framework to go beyond the MDGs and tackle priorities likely to figure in the post-2015 agenda, including inequalities, economic empowerment of women and non-communicable diseases, among others.

The experiences of MDG acceleration would position countries well as the moved to implementation of the post-2015 agenda. “With clear goals and targets, strong national and local ownership and, focused action plans and capacity built for implementation, mountains can be moved to achieve the MDGs and future SDGS”, Miss Clark said.

To view the UN 2014 MDG report – please click here.

Contact information

Dylan Lowthian tel. +1 212-906-5516 email

UNDP Around the world