Helen Clark: Speech at Indonesia-hosted Side Event on “Global Partnership and Sustainable Growth with Equity: Making Development Work in a Post-2015 World”

27 Sep 2013

Speech for Helen Clark, UNDP Administrator and Chair of UNDG, Indonesia-hosted Side Event on “Global Partnership and Sustainable Growth with Equity: Making Development Work in a Post-2015 World”
UN Trusteeship Council Chamber, New York

I thank the Government of Indonesia for organizing this side event - examining how we can “Make development work in a Post-2015 world”. Indonesia is contributing a great deal to the shaping of the post-2015 agenda – including through the role played by the President of Indonesia as Co-chair of the UN Secretary-General’s High-Level Panel on Post-2015.

At the President of the General Assembly’s Special Event on the MDGs this week, a most encouraging outcome document was adopted. Member States expressed their determination to accelerate achievement of the MDGs and build on the foundations they set to craft a post-2015 development agenda which completes unfinished business and responds to new challenges.

Member States agreed that the eradication of poverty and hunger worldwide should be at the core of the new agenda. They also made it clear that the agenda should integrate “in a balanced manner the three dimensions of sustainable development”, and agreed that this involved “working towards a single framework and set of Goals – universal in nature and applicable to all countries” while taking into account national contexts, policies, and priorities.

In reaching this agreement, Member States are acknowledging that reducing poverty, protecting the one planet we all share, growing our economies, and achieving social justice are shared and inter-liked objectives. Green and inclusive economies and societies are needed to deliver on these multiple objectives, and so are strong and innovative partnerships.

As pointed out in the High Level Panel Report, bringing this agenda together will be no small task. For twenty years, the international community has aspired to integrate the social, economic, and environmental dimensions of sustainable development. Now is the time to get on with doing it. I will now comment briefly on:
•    progress on MDG8 on developing global partnerships for development,
•    the trends influencing global partnerships, and
•    how to realize new partnerships

Assessing MDG G8: The Global Partnership as it stands
While delivery on MDG8 on partnership is often criticized, there has been some success. MDG8 provided the impetus for increased development assistance.  Nonetheless, as reported in the MDGs Gap Task Force Report, launched by the Secretary-General just over a week ago,  there is a gap between its initial level of ambition and the extent of implementation.

Official development assistance, for example, has fallen in the last two years. The open, rule-based, predictable, non-discriminatory trading and financial system called for in MDG8 has not progressed, with the WTO’s Doha Development Round stalled twelve years after it was launched.

But there has been progress on which we can build, and there are new opportunities which can be pursued. The roll out of new technologies, especially information and communication technologies, is significant – with a great deal of private sector and social entrepreneur innovation. The Broadband Commission, launched by the International Telecommunications Union (ITU) and UNESCO, has also brought a broad partnership together to promote broadband for development. It is important to ensure that the reach of these technologies extends to those who are currently poor and disadvantaged.  

A number of global partnerships have emerged in recent years around specific goals and issues. Examples which have attracted significant funding and helped the achievement of the health MDGs include the Global Alliance on Vaccination and Immunization (GAVI), and the Global Fund to fight AIDS, Malaria and Tuberculosis. We’ve also seen some progress in access to affordable and essential drugs in developing countries, but far more could be done to enable developing countries to get the full benefit of the TRIPS flexibilities and to extend vital treatment to the poor.

What will influence future global partnerships?
The global development assistance landscape has changed substantially – going far beyond North-South, donor-recipient relationships.

South-South and triangular co-operation are growing fast, as are trade and investment within the Global South. Fast -moving emerging economies have lifted very large numbers of people out of poverty, and are establishing innovative social protection systems. They have many experiences to share with others seeking similar success. Global partnerships of the future will be shaped by these significant trends.

There can also be no doubt that our world’s sustainable development challenge requires all countries to act. The shift to sustainable production and consumption patterns requires significant action from the developed world - to cut carbon emissions, address food waste, and adopt cleaner ways to generate energy and to farm, manufacture, and travel.

The efforts of some, however, can be in effect negated by the inaction of others. It is critical to forge new global partnerships built around mutual accountability and an understanding of our shared future.  

The spread of knowledge and new technologies has been a cornerstone of human progress. To confront climate change and environmental degradation, countries with the means and the capacity must step up their investments in new and green technologies, and be willing to share the results faster with those who are now developing.

New global efforts are also needed to build trade capacity, facilitate access to closed markets, and stimulate trade within and across regions.

Realizing a renewed Global Partnership
As acknowledged by Member States in the outcome document two days ago, meeting expectations and implementing the future agenda will mean making “effective use of all resources, public and private, domestic and international”.

While official development assistance is of diminishing significance in overall financing for development, it remains a critical resource for many developing countries, especially the least developed. Yet, despite the proven impact of quality aid, ODA levels are falling - which will impact on developing countries’ progress.

Since 2000, philanthropic and private foundations have become larger development players. South-South and triangular co-operation have grown. Trade and private investment are key drivers of growth and development. So are the substantial remittances from migrants back to their countries of origin.

Innovative sources of financing for development could also play a bigger role. Levies on airplane tickets are now contributing to funds for the fight against AIDS, malaria and tuberculosis through the UNITAID initiative, which is supported by 28 countries and the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation. Development bonds are being issued to help fill funding gaps – including the “vaccine bonds” supported by GAVI.  

With the sources of significant funding for development now so diverse, the time is right for discussion on how to make the most effective use of all the available financing, across the three pillars of sustainable development.

I understand that member states are currently discussing the possibility of convening a high-level meeting on financing the post-2015 development agenda. Such a meeting would be important - to consider the full spectrum of financing for development and identify opportunities for new partnerships. At UNDP, we look forward to working with Member States and all development stakeholders to ensure that shared aspirations for a better future for all people can and will be achieved through the post-2015 agenda.
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Leadership
Helen

Helen Clark became the Administrator of the United Nations Development Programme on 17 April 2009, and is the first woman to lead the organization.

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