Delivering for sustainable development

The Member States refer to the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development as their “road map and its implementation a necessity for our survival.... The next 10 years, which have been designated as the decade of action and delivery for sustainable development, will be the most critical of our generation. It is even more important as we build back better from the COVID-19 pandemic.”6

In Chapter 2 on sustainable development, Ms. Toni-Shae Freckleton (Jamaica) takes stock of the COVID-19 pandemic’s effect on national, regional and international efforts to achieve the UN SDGs. She notes that the COVID-19 pandemic coincided with the start of the “Decade of Action and Delivery” for implementation of the UN SDGs. Rather than focusing on the negative, she sees a new opportunity for a fresh start to achieve a transformative vision of the world and for the world. The international community has already committed to action and, she says, it is now time to push for implementation of the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development. In her view, the quintessential lesson provided by the COVID-19 pandemic is the recognition of the need for strong international cooperation and multilateral action. A stronger multilateral governance system will be key to peace and prosperity in the future. Ms. Freckleton is a former Senior Adviser and Team Leader for Sustainable Development and Liaison to the Caribbean Community in the Office of the 73rd and 74th Presidents of the UN General Assembly.

Economic diplomacy and financing for development

The Member States also emphasize the need for sustainable financing and predictable funding of the Organization. They commit to full and timely payment of their assessed contributions; to further enhanced transparency, accountability and efficient use of resources; to full and timely implementation of the Addis Ababa Action Agenda of the Third International Conference on Financing for Development; and to the centrality- of joint public-private financing in their “efforts to make the United Nations deliver better on its purposes.”7

In Chapter 3 on the future of economic diplomacy and financing for development, Mr. Jonathan Viera (Ecuador) argues that, more than ever, the world needs a strong and inclusive economic multilateralism. He notes that both developed and developing countries have suffered severe economic shocks as a result of the COVID-19 crisis. He offers several “prescriptions” to resolve systemic financial and economic problems in order to minimize the recovery period. For developing countries, he finds that the “prescriptions” for economic restoration are the same as before the pandemic. While the political commitment of all actors is required at every level — national, regional and global - he proffers that the “new normal” should come with new morals. He identifies the following new morals as corporate social responsibility, fulfilment of Official Development Aid commitments, financial inclusion within and among countries, public-private collaboration of creditors worldwide and

The future is multilateralism 143 cooperation against tax evasion and illicit financial flows, among others. Mr. Viera is a career diplomat, former Vice President of the UNDP/UNFPA/ UNOPS Executive Board, and former Senior Adviser on economics in the Office of the President of the UN General Assembly.

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