Symposium on Equipping Public Institutions and Mobilizing Partnerships

His Excellency Mr. Perry G. Christie, Prime Minister of the Commonwealth of the Bahamas,Honourable Mr. Khaalis Rolle, Minister of State in the Office of the Prime Minister of the Bahamas,His Excellency Mr. Frederick Musiiwa Makamure Shava, President of the Economic and Social Council, Permanent Representative of the Republic of Zimbabwe to the United Nations,His Excellency Mr. Ahmed Sareer, Chair of the Alliance of Small Island States (AOSIS), Permanent Representative of Maldives to the United NationsExcellencies, Distinguished Delegates, Ladies and Gentlemen,

I am delighted to welcome you to this Symposium.

I would like to thank the Government of the Bahamas for hosting this event in these beautiful surroundings.

With this Symposium, we intend to reflect on how SIDS can take a fast track towards the SDGs and the SAMOA Pathway. We will reflect on four key building blocks of implementation.

We need to reflect on how SIDS can integrate the 2030 Agenda, the Samoa Pathway and other agreements, in their national plans, policies, and strategies.

We also need to give particular attention to the special vulnerabilities of SIDS – the adverse impacts of climate change and disasters – and on ways to strengthen resilience and elaborate risk-informed policies.

The first building block is rethinking policies while ensuring integration and coherence.Implementing the SDGs starts by adapting the targets of the 2030 Agenda to countries’ national realities and priorities and incorporating those into policies and plans. We can learn a lot from Samoa, the Bahamas and others, which recently went through this exercise.

A necessary condition for developing integrated approaches is to move out of the silos that characterize policy making and implementation.

A second building block for implementing the SDGs is public institutions. Many countries are shaping and mobilizing their institutions to implement the SDGs. SDG 16 pledges to make institutions effective, accountable, and inclusive. Public accountability, ethical leadership, combatting corruption and ensuring participatory decision making have never been more important. It is also crucial to ensure that public services improve the lives of all people. We will take stock of what have learned on how to adapt and equip public institutions for realizing the SDGs.

A third building block for implementation relates to Means of Implementation. The Addis Ababa Agenda on financing the SDGs provides a framework for financing the SDGs. These commitments should actually be frontloaded so that progress towards the SDGs can really take off.

The 2030 Agenda also underscored the transformative power of technologies for realizing the SDGs.

Another Means to implement the SDGs is partnerships. The Samoa Conference marked a turning point by including partnerships as a part of its formal outcome.

A fourth building block for implementing the SDGs is statistical capacities. Statistics are crucial for countries to develop evidence-based policies and to review their own progress towards the SDGs. Many SIDS have severe capacity gaps in this regard. Last month, the first ever UN World Data Forum was held in South Africa. The Forum launched a Global Action Plan for Sustainable Development Data. We will reflect on how to build on those commitments to harness the power of data and statistics for realizing the SDGs.

Ladies and Gentlemen,Supporting SIDS is a top priority for UNDESA and for me personally as the Secretary-General of the Samoa Conference.

I look forward to inspiring discussions on the implementation of the 2030 Agenda in SIDS over the coming days.

Thank you.
File date: 
Tuesday, February 21, 2017
Mr. Wu