Closing remarks High-level Meeting on Financing the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development

Madam Deputy Secretary-General,Your Excellencies,Distinguished Delegates,Ladies and Gentlemen,

Today’s High-level meeting provided an excellent opportunity to identify bottlenecks to financing the Sustainable Development Goals and to discuss collective solutions. On behalf of the United Nations Department of Economic and Social Affairs, I thank all speakers for their contributions and all participants for their generous support.

This type of Meeting helps to bridge understanding among the various actors critical for accelerating resource mobilization. This is especially important as we face potential risks of slower progress towards achieving the SDGs.

Thanks to your high-level engagement, we can ensure that today’s discussion does not end here. Rather, it should continue to resonate with each of us as its champions.

Ladies and Gentlemen,

Despite a daunting challenge, we are fortunate to have both a roadmap and vehicle for adequately financing the 2030 Agenda.

The Addis Ababa Action Agenda is our roadmap. It provides a framework agreed by Member States, emphasizing all sources of finance and the wider means of implementation.

Many of its principles were reflected in some of the important points made today, and should be built on in our way forward. At the same time, some of the challenges identified indicate areas requiring greater attention to translate the vision of the Addis Agenda into a reality.

The Addis Agenda recognizes that it is imperative to strengthen public policies, regulatory frameworks and finance at the national, regional and global levels. Policies and regulatory frameworks need to be coherent, and not contradictory. This underlines the importance of multilateralism.

The Addis Agenda also commits States to promoting incentives along the investment chain. Incentives that are aligned with long-term objectives and sustainable development, and that reduce excess volatility. Investing in the SDGs should not mean a choice between profitability and sustainability.

As was highlighted by some participants today, private investment and technological innovation are essential for making progress. But neither one is a panacea. Attention needs to be paid to when, where and how private financial flows and technologies can best support the SDGs.

Addressing systemic issues is also critical. These include risks and vulnerabilities that constrain countries’ sustainable development progress and resource mobilization efforts. Doing so would help protect the most vulnerable countries from economic and financial volatility generated by forces beyond their control.

Ladies and Gentlemen,

The United Nations offers a vehicle for driving momentum on financing the SDGs. The UN does not invest by itself, but we are promoting and facilitating investment in SDGs by all stakeholders. My Department, or UNDESA, is supporting the Secretary-General and the Deputy Secretary-General in their efforts in promoting Financing for Development. We are committed to providing impartial support to Member States. We do this by generating high-quality analysis, facilitating intergovernmental agreements and helping to build capacities in countries.

Our research and analysis offer integrated policy recommendations on sustainable development. Specifically, the Inter-Agency Task Force on Financing for Development, which is composed of over 50 UN entities and non-UN entities, ensures a collaborative approach of the international community. It ensures greater coherence of the Organization’s work on finance.

DESA’s role in supporting follow-up and review of the 2030 Agenda and its financing promotes a dialogue among Member States and partners. The ECOSOC Forum on Financing for Development follow-up, held every April, is a platform for convening all stakeholders to take stock of progress, and engage in discourse on resource mobilization, financing flows, and system issues.

In addition, the High-level Political Forum, Development Cooperation Forum and SDG Investment Fair, among others—allow us to dig deeper into specific aspects of financing for sustainable development and the means of implementation for the 2030 Agenda.

In the year ahead, we will make every effort to ensure strong synergies between these opportunities and the Secretary-General’s Strategy on Financing the 2030 Agenda.

Ladies and Gentlemen,

The year 2019 will be an important year. We will conclude the first four-year cycle of implementation of the 2030 Agenda. We need to build up our efforts. We need to improve our approach. Global leaders from Governments, the private sector, philanthropy and civil society will gather here in the UN Headquarters in September 2019 to take stock of progress at the High-level Political Forum and High-level Dialogue on Financing for Development.

I hope that when we meet in a year’s time, we will look back at the interim period and see evidence that today’s discussion generated concrete actions in support of financing for the SDGs.

I thank you all for your support.
File date: 
Monday, September 24, 2018
Mr. Liu