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Supporting Member States in developing and strengthening environment statistics and integrated environmental-economic accounting for improved monitoring of sustainable development

High quality statistics and integrated information are important inputs into evidence based policy and decision-making. They are also key to monitoring internationally agreed goals, sustainable development, and the post-2015 development agenda. Given the critical role of high quality environment statistics, and their integration with socio-economic statistics the overall objective is to strengthen national capacities of developing countries for the sustained, regular production of a priority set of environmental statistics, environmental-economic accounts, and the resulting indicators, in order to measure progress towards sustainable development. The project is composed of two complementary modules, developed in a harmonized manner.Module A will work with countries that are in the early stages of developing environment statistics. It will be executed through a set of activities including organizing an initial sub-regional capacity-building workshop to train the countries using the FDES and the Basic Set of Environment Statistics, applying the Environment Statistics Self-Assessment Tool, developing national work plans, providing technical assistance and organizing national workshops for the participating countries, promoting inter-institutional platforms and data-sharing protocols at the national level, and organizing a closing sub-regional workshop to share progress, lessons learned and discuss the way forward. Module B will work with countries that expressed interest in implementing the SEEA. It will be executed through a set of activities including developing diagnostic tools for the self-assessment on institutional environment and data availability for compiling environmental-economic accounts, organizing two expert group meetings to discuss diagnostic tools and compilation guidelines, organizing four sub-regional workshops to build capacity in countries and develop national strategies, developing regional implementation strategies for environmental-economic accounting, organizing four pilot projects, and developing compilation guidelines.

Enhancing national statistical capacity to measure, monitor, assess and report on progress on achieving post-2015 goals and targets for sustainable development

Recognizing the importance of high quality statistics and their effective use in promoting evidence-based socio-economic policies and achieving internationally and nationally agreed goals, the overall objective of the project is to strengthen national statistical systems in select developing countries in their capacity to measure, monitor, assess and report on progress on achieving post-2015 goals and targets for sustainable development. This will in turn improve availability to users, especially policy decision makers, of timely and reliable statistics that are policy relevant and meet the increasing demand for high quality information to ensure development goals at both the national and international levels are achieved.
The project will be delivered through a set of activities including desk studies of the countries’ current statistical capacity to monitor and report on these goals and targets, workshops and in-country technical assistance missions to increase awareness regarding the monitoring and reporting requirements of the SDGs and post-2015 goals and targets, to discuss priorities, to assess national capacities and gaps, to assist in the creation of implementation plans for monitoring and reporting and to build capacity for their implementation.
The project will provide assistance to national statistical offices in 6 pilot countries. The results will be shared on a regional level, allowing other countries to benefit from and to follow the experiences of the pilot counties. A Steering Committee composed of representatives of the participating statistical offices and co-operating agencies will guide the overall execution of the project.

Promoting Environmentally Sustainable Transport (EST) in Asia – Formulation of National EST Strategies vis-à-vis Capacity Building for Socio-economic Concerns

In the context of the Post-2015 Development Agenda and of the 2020 World Population and Housing Census Programme, the time is ripe to: (i) take stock of the current state of affairs regarding disability measurement from the point of view of those developing guidelines and also from the national perspective in terms of how data are collected, and (ii) to offer countries more practical guidance for collecting and utilizing quality and reliable statistics on persons with disabilities. For inclusive development leaving no one behind, the census is an ideal vehicle for data collection. As censuses embody total coverage of a country, they are a vital source of data that can be disaggregated by age, sex, geography, disability status, and socio-economic characteristics for comparative analysis of the situation of persons with and without disabilities in terms of equalization of opportunities. In this respect, country participation in the 2020 census round is very important. In the context of collecting adequate and relevant data for all inclusive development planning and monitoring taking into account the situation of persons with disabilities, it is equally important that countries also plan for and conduct more detailed studies mainly through sample surveys. 17. A review of experiences of countries in collecting data on disability through censuses and surveys will be necessary in order to identify good practices and also challenges that countries still face in this regard so that, if necessary revisions/updates can be done on existing international guidelines for disability measurement. Also in the context of reviewing past national experiences it will be important for UNSD to collect, collate and disseminate disability data that countries have collected during censuses of the 2010 round and also through recent sample household surveys and other nationally-representative data sources. 18. The project aims to enhance the capacity of national statistical offices to produce and disseminate good quality and fit-for-purpose statistics on disability for evidence-based policy making and monitoring. In so doing, this project will build on the work of the Washington Group, taking into account other initiatives on developing disability measurements.

Promotion of the 3Rs (Reduce, Reuse, and Recycle) in Asia and the Pacific Promotion of the 3Rs (Reduce, Reuse, and Recycle) in Asia and the Pacific

The main objective of the 3R process in Asia is to integrate 3Rs and resource efficiency in the overall policy, planning and development, by sensitizing the local and national governments, private sector, industry and business groups (including SMEs), and civil society, in order to contribute the Outcome of Rio+20 – The Future We Want, 3Rs and resource efficiency are promoted as the basis for sustainable waste management. The objectives of the proposed Project are more explicitly the following:
– To achieve a low carbon and resource efficient society in Asia by integrating 3Rs in overall policy, planning and development.
– To strengthen multilayer partnership for effective implementation of 3Rs as outlined in Ha Noi 3R Declaration (2013-2023).

Strengthening national capacities for assessing and implementing the Belt and Road initiative to accelerate the achievement of the SDGs in participating countries

The government of the People’s Republic of China has launched a far-reaching international development cooperation initiative in 2013 for jointly building the Silk Road Economic Belt and the 21st-Century Maritime Silk Road, or, the Belt and Road (B&R). The B&R presents the potential for promoting inclusive and sustainable development in the countries in South East Asia, South Asia, Central and Western Asia, Middle East and Africa, and Central and Eastern Europe, with positive spillovers to the rest of the world. The initiative is expected to enhance policy coordination, connectivity, trade, financial integration and people to people contacts, forging greater international economic integration and helping these countries implement the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development and achieve the SDGs. To realize the huge potential of the Belt and Road requires substantial strengthening of the national capacities in those countries for stipulating various policy options under the Belt and Road initiative and assessing the effects on the achievement of the SDGs both within and across countries.
Development Policy and Analysis Division (DPAD) of the United Nations Department of Economic and Social Affairs (UNDESA) has comparative advantages to lead the proposed multi-country project, to strengthen national capacities for policy analysis and facilitate policy dialogues among key stakeholders from the participating countries. DESA/DPAD will implement the project in partnership with the State Information Center (SIC), National Development and Reform Commission (NDRC) of the People’s Republic of China and other policy research institutions in the target countries. At various stages of implementation, DPAD will partner with DSD, UNSD, FfDO and OESC in UNDESA. It will also collaborate with UN regional commissions (UNESCAP, UNESCWA, ECA and ECE), ITC, UNCTAD, UNDP, UNIDO and WTO. The project also aims at strengthening and deepening engagement and policy dialogues among policy-makers and experts from the participating countries, between these countries and other countries with shared interests, and between these countries and international organizations, including through existing platforms at the United Nations, such as the voluntary national presentations in the HLPF and the DCF.