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Development Account Projects

Supporting Millennium Development Goals (MDG)-based development strategies through integrated regional action


The adoption of Millennium Declaration in 2000 by 191 member states of the United Nations gave rise to the Millennium Development Goals which have become an overarching framework for inclusive development and a means for development partners and development countries to work together.

At the mid-point to 2015, the region as a whole is unlikely to attain all the MDGs. In fact, the most recent regional MDG report prepared under the ESCAP/ADB/UNDP regional MDG partnership showed that none of the countries of the region will reach all the targets by 2015 and that several countries, particularly amongst the least developed countries, the landlocked developing countries, countries with economies in transition and the Pacific island economies, are off-track in achieving the MDGs. The confluence of food crisis, fuel crisis and natural disasters witnessed recently have added to the difficulties of these and other developing countries in reaching the MDGs by 2015.  Several factors or gaps have been identified as being the primarily responsible for holding back the countries of the region in making required progress in MDGs. These factors and gaps are: growth gap, policy gap, strategy gap, resource gap and implementation gap.   These gaps are particularly acute in the off-track countries.  By addressing these gaps, the MDGs have the potential to become an instrument for promoting and sustaining inclusive development.

This project seeks to promote capacity development in selected countries of the region in achieving the MDGs by 2015. In particular, it aims to assist the target countries in developing and implementing MDG-based national development strategies through a combination of capacity development in key MDG-delivery systems, evidence-based MDG policy advocacy and awareness creation through media and outreach activities. The capacity building aspects of this project have two broad thrusts. Firstly, it will focus on enhancing the understanding and capacity of policymakers and their development partners in incorporating MDGs into their development policies and strategies and effectively implementing those strategies with a particular emphasis on issues, such as service delivery and resource mobilization. Secondly, it will lead to improved evidence-based MDG policy advocacy through statistical capacity building in the participating countries.  The latter will also help these countries to take corrective policy measures when needed. Given the diversity of the region and the variations in  statistical capacity to incorporate MDGs, this part of the project will have a strong component, to be implemented by ECE, specifically focused on the Central Asian countries.


The objective of the project is to strengthen, through coordinated regional actions, the national capacities to formulate, implement and monitor national development strategies in support of internationally agreed development goals, including the MDGs.

Expected Accomplishments:

  • Improved capacities of policymakers to integrate MDGs in national development frameworks.
  • Increased skills to produce and disseminate relevant disaggregated MDG indicators through effective cooperation of data producers at national and international levels in support of national statistical systems which are based on countries’ needs and sound methodologies.
  • Improved capacities of key national stakeholders in advocating MDGs and in supporting the achievement of the MDGs taking advantage of the regional MDG road map.

Implementation Status:

ECE organized an Expert Group Meeting (EGM) on Millennium Development Goal (MDG) Indicators in South-eastern Europe, Caucasus and Central Asia held in Geneva, Switzerland, from 8 to 11 November 2010. The EGM discussed the discrepancies between population and health data produced by specialised agencies and by countries, and examined possible ways to address them, e.g. use of standards, definitions and methodologies, international cooperation and coordinated national mechanisms.

One of the milestones of the project in 2010 was the organization of a regional partnership dialogue on developing and implementing MDG-based national development strategies in Asia-Pacific countries, held in Phnom Penh, Cambodia, on 13-15 December in collaboration with the Government of Cambodia, UNDP, and ADB.

An EGM on Priorities, Strategies and Designs for Statistical Training on Indicators for Monitoring MDG Progress was organized by ESCAP, in collaboration with the Statistical Institute for Asia and the Pacific (SIAP) and the Sub-regional Office for the Pacific (EPOC) in Bangkok, Thailand, on 22-24 June 2010. The EGM initiated dialogue on strengthening partnerships towards attaining the desired long-term impact of the statistical capability building.

A Sub-regional Training Workshop on Dissemination and Communication of MDG Statistics for Effective use in Policy and Decision-making was organized in Daejeon, Republic of Korea, on 18-20 October 2010, to bring together statisticians responsible for producing and disseminating MDG-related statistical data and indicators and Civil Society Organizations (CSOs) who use data in their advocacy and programming activities in order to improve the quality and usefulness of data and statistics produced for assessing development progress.