Islamabad, September 28, 2015 (PPI-OT): President Yoweri K. Museveni,
Prime Minister Lars Lokke Rasmussen,
Secretary General Ban Ki-moon,
Ladies and Gentlemen,
I am delighted to join you all at this defining moment of our times. By adopting the Post-2015 Development Agenda, we, as the global community, are committing ourselves to a shared vision of inclusive growth and development, ensuring that ‘no one is left behind’.
This is an agenda reflective of both ambition and action in our joint effort against poverty, hunger and human deprivation. At the beginning of this century, we had committed to a development agenda that brought international focus on poverty eradication and human development.
By putting people and their needs at the center, the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) reshaped decision making processes and redefined national priorities. As a result, over a billion people were rescued from extreme poverty. Substantial gains were also made in defeating hunger, illiteracy and disease. While our accomplishments were many, these were varied and unevenly diffused. Poverty, inequality, and lack of opportunity remain stark realities of our time.
The Post-2015 Development Agenda is our collective response to these challenges. It represents a giant leap forward. The 17 broad and cross-cutting Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), and the 169 associated Targets chart a development-centric and growth-oriented pathway. The Agenda posits itself on the three dimensions of sustainable development: social justice, environmental stewardship and economic wellbeing.
It is thus, an Agenda of change, which enjoys inherent vitality, as well as wide social acceptability. The focus is on transforming our economies and livelihoods, building cohesive, just and peaceful societies, and protecting our planet. Poverty eradication remains at its core.
Our journey does not end here. It has only just begun. The scope and magnitude of this new development framework is enormous. Delivering on it would require unwavering political will, both at the national and the international levels. Its implementation requires a paradigm shift in our political, social, economic, and developmental outlook.
We know from our national experience that strong and sustained economic growth has to be at the heart of any effort to achieve these goals. Social development necessitates synergies among key development priorities, including employment generation, energy security, demographic challenge, disaster risk-reduction, and governance.
It entails expanding access to energy and infrastructure, and making these available to a larger proportion of the population. Addressing systemic issues and structural constraints would be equally important. Credible and realistic data would underpin our success. These are all critical enablers for success.
And most importantly, meaningful implementation of this agenda demands matching resources. The ‘Addis Ababa Action Agenda’ provides a promising start. It complements the means of implementation outlined in the new development framework. We must deliver on these commitments.
Ladies and Gentlemen,
Development strategies remain, first and foremost, national undertakings. Eradication of poverty, hunger and disease, and provision of a better living are amongst our abiding commitments to our people.
For Pakistan, the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) complement our own developmental needs and priorities, as articulated in our ‘Vision 2025’. This document provides a policy framework for the integration of the new goals in our national economic and development planning.
It is also a blueprint of our political commitment to the process. The Government has initiated a series of wide-ranging reforms, inter alia, aimed at expanding the resource-base, stemming illicit capital outflows and ensuring optimized use of existing resources.
We are equally aware of the importance of a robust monitoring and follow-up mechanism for effective and full implementation of the SDGs in Pakistan. Elaborate coordination and oversight procedures have accordingly been put in place, at both the national and the provincial levels.
We also have a historic opportunity to reverse the threatening tide of climate change. We must, therefore, negotiate an outcome in Paris that is fair, equitable and guided by the principles of the UN Climate Change Convention. While we will do our part, we look forward to a reinvigorated global partnership that promotes and complements domestic policies and priorities, in line with our developmental needs.
I thank you.
For more information, contact:
Mr. Aizaz Ahmad Ch
Ministry of Foreign Affairs
Government of Pakistan