High-level Political Forum 2014 (under the auspices of ECOSOC)
The 2014 High-level Political Forum met under the auspices of the Economic and Social Council (ECOSOC) from Monday, 30 June, through Wednesday, 9 July 2014
Ministers, senior government officials, international organizations, major groups from civil society and scientists debated “Achieving the Millennium Development Goals and charting the way for an ambitious post-2015 development agenda, including the sustainable development goals”.
It adopted a Ministerial Declaration
The high-level political forum on sustainable development convened under the auspices of the Economic and Social Council met when the sustainable development goals and the options for a financing strategy for sustainable development were being formulated. The outcomes of those two processes are expected to form central elements of the post-2015 development agenda soon to be negotiated. At the forum there was a great sense of opportunity and a strong commitment to arrive at an ambitious outcome that would be able to lift countries and people out of poverty and put the world on a sustainable development path.
An integrated approach to sustainable development is essential for the post-2015 development agenda. The agenda should be universal, transformative, inclusive and people centred. It should be built on the principles of human rights and on respect for the Earth and its ecosystems.
Climate change is threatening development and the fate of future generations. New cooperation models and partnerships are crucial. The global community needs to accelerate progress towards the Millennium Development Goals and, later, the sustainable development goals through a revitalized global partnership for sustainable development, and enable all nations to develop sustainably.
The post-2015 development agenda must complete the unfinished business of the Millennium Development Goals. Poverty eradication is a precondition for sustainable development, and sustainable consumption and production is an essential requirement. Economic growth should be inclusive, sustainable and create decent employment, particularly for young people. Inequalities within countries between different segments of the population need to be reduced progressively.
The post-2015 development agenda must focus dedicated attention on and provide support to countries in special situations. A number of small island developing States and least developed countries have enjoyed social and economic progress as a result of effective policy interventions, measures to promote inclusive and gender-sensitive development, and good management of natural capital. Others can learn from their experience. Many of these countries are also highly vulnerable, however, to natural disasters, climate change and other shocks that are outside of their control.
Undertaking a new development agenda requires establishing common understanding and mutual trust. Rule of law, transparent and accountable institutions, access to justice, inclusion and empowerment are essential. Voluntary national reviews to be conducted by the high-level political forum after 2015 can be a valuable tool in supporting the progress of countries towards sustainable development goals. An effective mechanism to review implementation must engage all actors, including civil society, in a meaningful way, in order to strengthen legitimacy and effectiveness. Multi-stakeholder partnerships and voluntary commitments should strengthen implementation by involving a range of relevant stakeholders.
The post-2015 development agenda must be underpinned by the strengthened framework constituted by the General Assembly, the Economic and Social Council and the high-level political forum, under their respective auspices. It should leave policy space for national and subregional specificities. The high-level political forum will be crucial for promoting and reviewing the implementation of the post-2015 development agenda and the sustainable development goals. It must offer guidance on how to move from global commitments to national implementation and sustainable development results.
A strong interface between science and policy will be very important for the high-level political forum to establish itself as a forum from which relevant policy guidance on sustainable development emanates. The global sustainable development report could be an important tool in setting the agenda of the forum, identifying new challenges and reviewing progress on sustainable development.
Integration should be a high priority for United Nations operational activities in countries. Cooperation among United Nations entities is increasing, but more effort is needed to realize an organization that thinks, plans, programmes, monitors and evaluates as one. United Nations bodies need to have a consistent message for Governments that integrates the various dimensions of sustainable development and, as far as possible, a common reporting mechanism and set of indicators to measure progress on the sustainable development goals.
The international processes on the sustainable development goals, sustainable development financing and technology facilitation will ultimately need to converge in order to set an integrated and inclusive agenda for development beyond 2015. An ambitious global agreement in 2015 on climate change under the auspices of the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change will also be critically important to the future of sustainable development.
Report of the first meeting of the high-level political forum on sustainable development convened under the auspices of the Economic and Social Council: N1456969 (English only)