Helen Clark: Towards 2015 - Open Dialogue with the High-level Panel on the Post-2015 Development Agenda

Sep 25, 2012

Remarks for Helen Clark, UNDP Administrator,
At the Japan Contact Group side event
Towards 2015: Open Dialogue with the High-level Panel on the Post-2015 Development Agenda
Tuesday 25 September 2012
New York, 11:30am

I thank the Minister of Foreign Affairs of Japan for chairing today’s important dialogue on the post-2015 development agenda. Already, Japan has established its own Contact Group on the agenda; hosted the first global thematic consultation for post-2015, on “growth and development”; and continues its strong support for MDG achievement.

I also especially acknowledge all members of the UN Secretary General’s High-level Panel on Post-2015 who are with us today.

To open today’s discussion, I make three points – about the path ahead and the role of the UN as we work together to define the post 2015 agenda.

  • First, achieving the MDGs we have must remain a top priority.

The international community’s willingness to support a new agenda will be influenced by how successful the MDG process has been. Unfinished business on the MDGs should in any case be part of a successor framework.

The UN development system is prioritizing support for countries to achieve the MDGs, including by rolling out the MDG Acceleration Framework. In the past two and a half years, more than forty countries have employed the MAF to identify and implement the actions which will overcome bottlenecks and speed up progress toward lagging targets. The action plans being implemented require the sustained support of Member States.

  • Second, the evidence of what has worked in MDG achievement should inform the post 2015 agenda.

The UN Task Team on post-2015 has reviewed experience to date, considered the impact of global trends, and proposed, in its Report to the Secretary-General, possible contours for a new agenda. 

That Report highlights three principles for a renewed agenda: achieving human rights, reducing inequalities, and ensuring sustainability. It proposes establishing a limited number of concrete and universal goals, the achievement of which would advance economic and social development, environmental sustainability, and peace and security. We hope the Report will assist the High Level Panel as it begins its work.

  • Third, it will take time and patience to find consensus around a renewed global development agenda.  The findings of the High-level Panel and the work of Member States and the Open Working Group, mandated by Rio+20, will be important contributions.  But the voices and priorities of citizens, civil society groups, and independent experts must also inform the design of the renewed agenda. 

To this end, the UN Development Group has initiated a large consultation exercise.

  • National-level dialogues are being organized in at least fifty developing countries, and more are interested in hosting these.
  • Global and thematic dialogues with key stakeholders are also planned - on governance, health, education, jobs, and other key issues.  
  • The UN is employing new technologies to hold a ‘global conversation’ with citizens around the world, asking them what kind of world they want to live in and what actions should be taken.

To reach a shared vision and determine a broadly agreed agenda, the voices heard and analyses and evidence gathered through the various streams will need to come together. To ensure linkages across the UN processes, a UN office with secondees from member states, researchers, and across the UN will be physically located in UNDP premises here in New York. 

Working closely with ASG Amina Mohammed, UNDG and UNDESA will provide support for member states – bringing to the table the evidence and perspectives we have gathered through field experience and/or the consultations.

Working together at the United Nations, we hope that an ambitious post-2015 development agenda can be established aimed at eradicating poverty in all its dimensions and providing a green, inclusive, and equitable future for all.

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