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A global review of ecological fiscal transfers

GDI Briefing - 6. Juli 2021 - 14:51

Ecological fiscal transfers (EFT) transfer public revenue between governments within a country based on ecological indicators. EFT can compensate subnational governments for the costs of conserving ecosystems and in principle can incentivize greater ecological conservation. We review established EFT in Brazil, Portugal, France, China and India, and emerging or proposed EFT in ten more countries. We analyse common themes related to EFT emergence, design and effects. EFT have grown rapidly from US$0.35 billion yr−1 in 2007 to US$23 billion yr−1 in 2020. We discuss the scope of opportunity to expand EFT to other countries by ‘greening’ intergovernmental fiscal transfers.

Kategorien: english

How should the G-7 respond to China’s BRI?

Brookings - 6. Juli 2021 - 12:56

By Howard W. French, David Dollar

When the leaders of G-7 countries met in Carbis Bay last month, they announced a new Build Back Better World (B3W) plan to support infrastructure projects in low- and middle-income countries and respond to China’s Belt and Road Initiative.

There are few details of exactly how the B3W partnership will work, and there are questions about whether focusing on infrastructure is the best way for the United States and its partners to counter China on the global stage. In this episode, Howard W. French joins David Dollar to discuss the challenges B3W will face and why the West would be better off competing in areas where it already has relative advantages.

Read more 

Leave Infrastructure to China and Compete Where the West Has More to Offer

Is a Belated Western Rival to China’s Belt and Road Too Late?

Seven years into China’s Belt and Road

Understanding China’s Belt and Road infrastructure projects in Africa

 

      
Kategorien: english

Myanmar’s Civil Society Takes the Lead in Combating Covid-19

Reality of Aid - 6. Juli 2021 - 9:51

This article is part of Reality of Aid – Asia Pacific’s COVID-19 Response Series, “Resisting Repression; Recovering Together”, which aims to document the struggles, best practices, and lessons learned, as well as share recommendations of RoA-AP members as they responded to the pandemic at the national or regional level. Read more stories here.   By Nyi Nyi Aung, Local Resource Centre (LRC) Just as it began planning to restore its normal state of affairs, Myanmar was unexpectedly […]

The post Myanmar’s Civil Society Takes the Lead in Combating Covid-19 appeared first on Reality of Aid.

Kategorien: english

WTO reform: the role of the G20

GDI Briefing - 5. Juli 2021 - 23:17

Discussions on the reform of the World Trade Organization (WTO) have intensified over the last few years, and the often uncoordinated trade-policy responses to the Covid-19 pandemic further highlight the need to strengthen multilateral trade cooperation. The chapter discusses which roles the G20 can play in the increasingly dynamic and overlapping discussions on reform-ing the WTO – not least in the light of the fact that the group’s members have been actively submitting multiple proposals for WTO reform.

Kategorien: english

Quatrième révolution industrielle et migrations : comment assurer la transition dans les pays d’origine et de destination ?

OECD - 5. Juli 2021 - 12:47
Avec l’arrivée de nouvelles technologies qui brouillent les frontières entre sphères physique, numérique et biologique, un changement spectaculaire dans la façon dont nos économies et nos sociétés interagissent, produisent et communiquent est en cours. Et comme nos économies sont aujourd'hui plus que jamais interconnectées, cette révolution industrielle a lieu dans pratiquement tous les coins du monde. Parallèlement, les migrations internationales n'ont jamais été aussi nombreuses.
Kategorien: english

The fourth industrial revolution and migration: how to ensure a smooth transition?

OECD - 5. Juli 2021 - 12:47
A dramatic change in the way our economies and societies interact, produce and communicate is underway as a fusion of technologies blurs the lines between the physical, digital, and biological spheres. And with our economies more globally interlinked today than ever, this industrial revolution extends to practically every corner of the world. Meanwhile another sweeping trend is gaining traction: international migration is at an all-time high as new host countries, routes and freshly skilled workers multiply, and as a young population eager to make a mark on the world continues to grow.
Kategorien: english

Global South Side Event at the HLPF 2021

Reality of Aid - 5. Juli 2021 - 12:10

The Covid-19 pandemic is an unprecedented global health crisis with impacts on economies and sustainable development of countries, especially in the Global South. Climate change is also making its impact felt, and its effects are becoming more catastrophic every year. Climate-induced resource shortages and widespread poverty are also fueling the escalation of conflict and fragility in many parts of the world. Covid-19 has made the situation worse, making ambitious actions to tackle the recovery agenda, conflict and fragility, and the climate emergency every more urgent and critical. 

The post Global South Side Event at the HLPF 2021 appeared first on Reality of Aid.

Kategorien: english

Building forward more inclusively: mission possible?

INCLUDE Platform - 5. Juli 2021 - 10:13

For many African countries, COVID-19 was a crisis within – and on top of – already existing crises. However, this pandemic has also present us with a chance to build forward more inclusively. The recommendations of the high-level speakers who opened the INCLUDE conference on ‘Building forward more inclusively’ revolve around the 3-E’s: the economy, equity and the environment. Read these recommendations, as well as the key takeaways from the conference, while awaiting the conference report, which will be released at the end of July.

Despite some positive signs of resilience, it is evident that COVID-19 has, and will continue to, exacerbate existing inequalities. Hence, the post-COVID-19 socio-economic recovery in Africa should aim to tackle these inequalities and promote inclusive development, while adapting the current approach to development aid. The following recommendations, presented in the opening session of the INCLUDE conference on 8 June 2021, revolve around the 3-E’s – the economy, equity and the environment – and should be read keeping in mind that the impacts of climate change are as pronounced as those of COVID-19:

  • Recommendation 1: The focus of socio-economic recovery measures should be on youth, women, and other vulnerable and excluded groups and how to make them ‘bankable’.
  • Recommendation 2: Holistic social protection programmes, but also digitalization and innovation, can play an important part in the recovery process.
  • Recommendation 3: There is a need for quick, immediate and substantial financing that addresses structural barriers and promotes inclusive policies.
  • Recommendation 4: Donors must respect their pledges and financial commitments.
  • Recommendation 5: Increased cooperation should take place with and between African countries, and local actors should be given the space to take the driver’s seat in this process.
  • Recommendation 6: For more effective multistakeholder dialogues, the gap between research, policy and practice should be bridged with the help of established and dedicated knowledge platforms.

These recommendations were suggested by the high-level speakers who contributed to the conference opening:

  • Kitty Van Der Heijden, Director General for International Cooperation, Dutch Ministry of Foreign Affairs
  • Dr Edward Brown, Senior Director, Research & Policy Engagements, African Center for Economic Transformation (ACET)
  • Jean-Paul Adam, Director, Technology, Climate Change and Natural Resource Management Division, United Nations Economic Commission for Africa (UNECA)
  • Steven Collet, Ambassador Business & Development, Dutch Ministry of Foreign Affairs

This was only the beginning of 10 days of fruitful and productive exchanges between 50 expert speakers, session chairs and moderators, and a diverse audience. The sessions tackled themes around COVID-19 and inequality, youth employment, social protection and the African Policy Dialogues. The key messages from each of the 5 thematic sessions, as well as the opening and closing keynote speeches, are summarized as follows.

Key messages from conference sessions Opening session: After the COVID-19 shakeup: realities and opportunities for Africa’s development partners

To tackle the two multidimensional emergencies currently facing Africa, COVID-19 and climate change, an integrated approach that simultaneously accounts for the economy, equity and the environment is required.

Thematic session 1 – The (un)expected evidence: COVID-19 and inequalities

While the responses of African governments to COVID-19 have showcased innovative, digital solutions, in some cases they have also exacerbated existing inequalities, infringed on human rights and failed to institutionalize proper implementation frameworks to ensure resilience.

Thematic session 2 – Merging perspectives on decent employment for Africa’s youth post-pandemic

Barriers to decent youth employment can be overcome by following the principles of ‘human economy with the youth at its heart’: 1) the modernization of education systems; 2) the creation of more and better employment opportunities (by public and private sectors); 3) economic growth centred around inclusive private sector development; and 4) the promotion of meaningful youth participation.

Thematic session 3 – Uganda’s way: youth employment and participation post-COVID

Although structural issues related to too few jobs are to blame for youth unemployment in Uganda, the entire value chain of agricultural production seems to be the most promising growth sector for enhancing youth employment.

Thematic session 4 – Donor meets policymaker: modelling social protection responses on the continent

Social protection programmes are instrumental for poverty and inequality reduction. The success of their implementation, however, requires the involvement of several strategic development actors and pragmatic compromise in light of budgetary deficits.

Thematic session 5 – Resilience amidst COVID-19: approaches and strategies from the African Policy Dialogues (APDs)

The different responses of the Mozambican, Ghanaian and Kenyan governments to the COVID-19 pandemic, which have prompted ADP partners to undertake divergent policy influencing approaches in each country, underline the importance of localization and context-specificity in policy making during times of crisis.

Closing session – Conference highlights and innovation strategies for a post-pandemic African

To build forward more inclusively emphasis should be placed on three key issues: 1) youth and decent employment; 2) digital innovation and its institutionalization to ensure resilience; and 3) climate adaptation and mitigation.

The final report of the conference will be published towards the end of July. Until then, we invite you to re-watch the sessions on our YouTube channel. In addition, every week we will publish a news item spotlighting one of the sessions, so stay tuned for this series!

 

Het bericht Building forward more inclusively: mission possible? verscheen eerst op INCLUDE Platform.

Kategorien: english

PRESS RELEASE: Global civil society to share perspectives on world’s SDG progress

CSO Partnership - 5. Juli 2021 - 6:22

In time for the 2021 United Nations High-Level Political Forum (UN HLPF), the CSO Partnership for Development Effectiveness (CPDE) is presenting civil society perspectives on the global progress in achieving sustainable development, drawing from its study on the Voluntary National Reviews (VNRs).

The findings have been compiled in a report titled The long road to development: How effectiveness gaps hinder progress in Agenda 2030, which will be launched virtually on 6 July 2021, at 8AM in Buenos Aires, 1PM in Paris, and 7PM Manila.

At the event, speakers will share the reflections and recommendations of CSOs on the VNRs and the implementation of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) at the national level, using the lens of effective development cooperation (EDC). These were drawn from the results of a survey conducted by CPDE last March, participated in by 109 CSOs from 45 countries, all but three of which are developing countries.

The event will be available in English, Spanish, and French, and interested parties may sign up via this link: https://bit.ly/VNRLaunchSignup.

Held under the auspices of the UN Economic and Social Council, the High-Level Political Forum is the UN’s main platform for the follow-up and review of the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development and the 17 SDGs. It especially provides for the active participation of all United Nations member states and state members of specialised agencies towards achieving the goals.

This year, the HLPF aims to be a forum for discussing ways towards a sustainable and resilient recovery from COVID-19, to put the world back on track to realise the 2030 Agenda.

CPDE is an open platform that unites CSOs from around the world on the issue of effective development cooperation (EDC). It strives to make development more effective by reshaping the global aid architecture and empowering CSOs working on the ground.

It represents CSOs from six regions (Africa, Asia, Pacific, Europe, Middle East & North Africa, Latin America and the Caribbean), and eight sectors (Agriculture and Rural Development, Feminist Group, Indigenous Peoples, Faith-Based Organisations, International Civil Society Organisations, Youth, Labour, and Migrants and Diaspora).

To know more, visit csopartnership.org, or visit @CSOPartnership on Facebook, @csopartnership on Instagram, and @CSOPartnership_ on Twitter.#

 

Kategorien: english, Ticker

First Person: ‘Syrians still have ambition and hope’

UN ECOSOC - 3. Juli 2021 - 6:40
As a witness to the impacts of Syria’s internal conflict over the last decade, Bassel Al-Madani, a young engineer and former volunteer with the UN, was inspired to set up Entrepioneers 2030, a group that rallies youth to get involved in shaping the future of their country. 
Kategorien: english

CSO Perspectives on the LDC5 Programme of Action

Global Policy Watch - 2. Juli 2021 - 23:36

Download UN Monitor #24 (pdf version).

By Elena Marmo and Alexa Sabatini

The Fifth United Nations Conference on the Least Developed Countries (LDC5) will be held In Doha, Qatar in January 2022. Preparations are already underway to negotiate the Outcome Document to be adopted in Doha, which will serve as a new 10-year Programme of Action (PoA) for the LDCs.

On 20 May 2021, Co-Chairs of the LDC5 Preparatory Committee bureau–Rabab Fatima, Permanent Representative of Bangladesh and Bob Rae, Permanent Representative of Canada–facilitated a virtual consultation with Civil Society Organizations (CSOs), designed to address policy prescriptions that LDC5 must deliver to meet the needs of people and planet.

The consultation took place a few days before the First Preparatory Committee (PrepCom) meeting 24-28 May, which signaled the beginning of the deliberations to shape the Outcome Document of LDC5. Member States and Civil Society also gathered for an event titled, “Diversifying the Financing Toolbox to Enhance Investment in LDCs” co-convened by the Presidents of the General Assembly and ECOSOC on 18 June. Discussions will continue during the Second PrepCom meeting 26-30 July.

Thus far, CSOs have highlighted a number of challenges and policy measures. In this compilation, their comments have been organized around the six PrepCom themes that were identified to guide Member State discussions and negotiations. They are:

  • Investing in people in least developed countries: eradicating poverty and building capacity to leave no one behind
  • Leveraging the power of science, technology and innovation to fight multidimensional vulnerabilities and achieve the Sustainable Development Goals
  • Structural transformation as a driver of prosperity Enhancing international trade of least developed countries and regional integration
  • Supporting our climate, recovery from the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) pandemic and building a resilient society against future shocks
  • Mobilizing international solidarity, reinvigorated global partnerships and innovative tools for risk-informed sustainable development: a march towards sustainable graduation.

In their presentations the CSOs also addressed the interlinkages and gaps in the framing itself. These included more emphasis on the impacts of COVID-19 and the related opportunities to accelerate transformative changes needed on issues of the trade regime, digital technologies, the chronic debt crisis, social protection, tax policy and worsening inequalities.

Engaging the process thus far, Civil Society members have made demands that span across the six PrepCom themes. This includes the call to move beyond siloed thinking and to consider a shift away from the status quo in the upcoming PoA. Yoke Ling Chee, Executive Director of Third World Network highlighted a need to consider growing inequality and policy coherence, saying: “we talk about transformation, the 2030 Agenda and need for it. But today we have deepening inequalities.” She emphasized the need for “aligning international policies to support international development. LDCs may have the right aspirations at the national level but if you don’t have coherent policies at the international level, you won’t achieve them.” She urged Member States to address policy changes not only in the LDC5 process, but in other global fora to usher in the much-needed transformation for LDCs.

This needed shift in the overall framing and orientation of the PoA was also cited by Demba Moussa Dembele, Chair of LDC Watch: “The pursuit of old and failed policies may only worsen the economic and social situation of LDCs in a way never seen before. Therefore, a radical change in approach to LDCs’ problems is required, both in terms of economic policies and international cooperation. Bold and decisive actions are needed as well as firm commitments and effective implementation.”

Dembele reiterated this observation, noting that: “the problem is that there is a gap between commitments and delivery”. He added:

“What LDCs need most is policy ownership and fiscal space to enable them to mobilize more domestic resources. They need the policies to help curb capital flight and tax evasion through international cooperation. In the concept note, it is said, I quote, ‘The business-as-usual approach is not going to make any considerable change.’ The logical conclusion is the need for radical change to approach both in terms of economic policies and international cooperation.”

Asad Rehman of War on Want called for a transition from rhetoric to action, specifically referencing: “the claim uttered by the richest countries in the world…that ‘no one is safe, until we are all safe’ rings as hollow as the unmet commitments to address the multiple crises facing many in the global South and in particular the LDC countries”.

Eradicating poverty & leaving no one behind

Emilia Reyes of Equidad de Género highlighted the importance of incorporating universal social protections in the proposed action plan: “We warn against promoting a private finance first approach…Human Rights Rapporteurs have shown the linkages to poverty and human rights violations. The Programme of Action must therefore be ambitious and structural in nature, under the human rights framework, gender equality and environmental integrity principles.”

Roberto Bissio of Social Watch challenged the ‘investing in people’ for profit framework: “…Health, education, access to water and to social security are human rights. And the Right to Development is part of the HR architecture of particular relevance to LDCs. Depriving people of these rights is a human rights violation”.

Gershom Kabaso, National Coordinator for Zambia Social Forum (ZAMSOF) highlighted specific concerns regarding the rollback in education funding as governments’ fiscal space is constrained by debt servicing: “Reduced budget allocations towards education in order to focus on debt servicing and economic performance also detrimental… Imposition of user/school fees hit the poor at a time when cost of living is increasing and incomes reducing causing many to be left out and this has continually manifested – now there is no free education for all.”

This, Kabaso notes, is inextricably linked to economic policy. He states that “the neoliberal context mostly prioritises a ‘growing economy’ ideology over the holistic well-being of people’s lives and this has been detrimental to LDC’s. Globally, the rolling out of neoliberal policies has led to a additional of harmful socioeconomic consequences, including increased poverty, unemployment, unproductive labour force, and deterioration of income distribution.”

COVID-19 & Social Protection
Representing DAWN, Gita Sen highlighted the need to consider the ways in which COVID-19 has impacted the ability of LDCs to advance poverty eradication. Speaking during the thematic panel discussion at the First PrepCom, she noted: “critical thus far for LDCs have been the economic effects threatening to wipe out gains in poverty reduction, schooling and human development more generally. UNCTAD’s December 2020 report warned that LDCs were likely to suffer the worst economic performance in 30 years. The CDP report’s data show that key sectors, tourism, remittances and manufacturing have been hit very hard.”

Citing the disproportionate effects on already marginalized and vulnerable populations, particularly women, Sen said a focus on social protection and health systems is critical. This was echoed by Gabriela Bucher of Oxfam International, who called for a focus on investments in social protection, health and education—“those are the great equalizers that really are transformative and system transformative. And…we know that for LDCs on average, it will take 10 percent of GDP to invest in social protection to the level requirement to have a minimum social protection floor.”

Leveraging the power of science, technology and innovation

Speaking at the CSO consultation on behalf of the Just Net Coalition, Anita Gurumurthy observed: “If implemented in citizen-centric ways, digitalization of public service delivery can be a vital measure to address the multidimensional vulnerabilities of LDCs and LLDCs. However, most efforts in this direction are a slippery slope – hollowing out the public sector, transferring control of public data systems to opportunistic private entities, preventing local accountability for data and algorithms, and disregarding the human rights of citizens.”

Francisca Oladipo, coordinator of the Virus Outbreak Data Network, highlighted the need for digital capacity building for new opportunities: “Our youth needs such skills to fully participate in the new digital economy. But this requires that they have access to broadband.”

Digital Inequalities
However, embracing digital technologies also requires a careful consideration of data ownership. Oladipo stated: “The Ebola Outbreak in Liberia and West Africa taught us that digital tools are essential to solve a health crisis. Satellite equipment was flown in and data was used to get the crisis under control. However, today the Ministry of Health in Liberia does not have all the data generated in Liberia on the crisis. The data might be in many places but not in Liberia, where it was produced. The importance of data has become even more clear in the COVID-19 Pandemic. But who owns the data, and who has access to these?”

Oladipo added, “The Digital Economy is dominated by the US with 68 percent of market capitalization of the world’s largest digital platforms and China with 22 percent, and together the US and China hold 90% of the market. With data centres situated in the global north, data travel to the world’s economic powerhouses. This leaves LDCs in a weak negotiation position, with no benefits or economic opportunities returning from the data extracted from it.”

Structural transformation as a driver of prosperity

COVID-19 and Worsening Inequalities
Speaking at the first PrepCom, Gabriela Bucher outlined a need to address the deepening inequalities within and among countries as a result of the COVID-19 crisis: “it would take over a decade for the world’s poorest people to recover from the economic impacts of the pandemic in sub-Saharan Africa…On the other side, one thousand richest billionaires on the planet recoup their COVID-19 losses within just nine months and that’s the story at the top. So we are facing an inequality virus.” As such, “a radical pursuit of equality must define how we heal as people and as planet”.

This requires coordinated action by both donor countries and LDCs: “every country needs to set clear, time-bound and concrete targets and plans to reduce the gap between rich and poor. And donors need to give the fight against inequality the absolute priority”. And further, the PoA must address unequal COVID-19 recovery efforts. Bucher cites that “with fiscal space comes fiscal imagination to invest in people. We’ve seen rich countries unleash 9,836 dollars per person in stimulus spending, compared to 17 dollars per person spent by LDCs.”

Speaking at the CSO consultation, Roberto Bissio emphasized that global inequalities, particularly those of income, still existing between LDCs and developed nations six years after the adoption of the 2030 Agenda: “With so much attention devoted to income poverty, it should be mentioned that while a person earning less than US$13.000 is considered poor in most rich countries, a person earning US$5.000 a year is part of the top 5 percent in most LDCs”.

Bissio further reiterated: “Most LDCs have less domestic inequalities than other developing countries, but the depth of global inequalities should be highlighted. It is so extreme, and worsening, that it falls beyond the understanding of most of the public and yet it might explain many of the problems we want to deal with, including the problem of conflicts affecting more than half of the LDCs. While peace is essential, but all of the permanent members of the Security Council in charge of overseeing peace are major arms exporters. Investing in arms for the LDCs seems to pay more than investing in their people in the real world.”

Division of Labour & Extractive Industries
Speaking at the CSO Consultations, Emilia Reyes cited neocolonial dynamics are “reproducing a pervasive Global Division of Labor, splitting the world between those who extract and exploit resources, data, human labor, as well as environmental and biodiversity integrity, and those who endure the externalities of that exploitation”.

Asad Rehman of War on Want discussed the ‘building back better’ policy agendas created by the global North in response to the COVID pandemic:“… but [they] are prefaced on the same model of extraction of resources, exploitation and prioritisation of capital accumulation for the richest in the world that has led to a world of violent contrasts: colossal wealth and immense poverty, chronic hunger and plentiful food, a restrictive economic system, yet abundant possibilities”.

Enhancing international trade of LDCs and regional integration

Francisca Oladipo expressed some of the technological challenges facing LDCs: “Today, only one in five people in LDCs are online. Half of the world remains offline. Women are more without access to connectivity in LDCs than anywhere else. The inequality in digital connectivity is increasing rapidly. Not being connected, not having access to data, means missing out on the digital economy”.

COVID-19 & TRIPS Waiver
At the first PrepCom meeting, Gita Sen also highlighted the intersections between international trade policy and the ability for LDCs to provide adequate health outcomes, and as such, COVID-19 recovery must be a central focus of the forthcoming PoA. She noted:

“Health and economics are closely intertwined everywhere, but nowhere, perhaps more so than in LDCs. Neither tourism nor remittances are likely to improve unless people are vaccinated. The single most important issue, therefore, today is access to vaccines, as well as to diagnostics and therapeutics. And the single biggest barrier to help globally and LDCs, where almost nobody has been vaccinated thus far or are unlikely to be in the rest of 2021 and possibly 2022, the single biggest barrier is the World Trade Organization’s (WTO) TRIPs Council.”

Given this reality, it is important for the WTO to approve the temporary TRIPS Waiver proposed by India and South Africa, which would waive the intellectual property protections on COVID-19 vaccines and therapeutics so that countries can afford to develop vaccines across the globe.

At the CSO consultation, Roberto Bissio stated: “Demanding support is not enough: the Conference should highlight that many LDCs have capacity to produce vaccines, for them and for the world, if only the TRIPS provisions were waived”. Gita Sen also advocated for a permanent extension to the TRIPS transition period, “so that it lasts for as long as the country is in LDCs and for a further 12 years for a smooth transition”.

Intersections of trade & digital technologies
During the CSO consultation, Anita Gurumurthy of IT for Change highlighted: “Global rules in digital trade and TRIPS-plus provisions in FTAs perpetuate the laissez faire regime of cross-border data flows, pushing for unrestricted access of digital companies to LDC markets and preventing LDCs from developing their own technological capability”.

Supporting our climate, recovery from COVID-19 and building a resilient society

Emilia Reyes explained how the COVID pandemic has further strained LDC societies: “COVID 19 showed richer countries centralizing their efforts in their own recovery and profiting, including even with unethical hoarding of vaccines…LDC’s are already facing harsh conditions due to the climate emergency, and the debt crisis is worsening the conditions, even more for the most discriminated groups of population. In this regard, the usual dynamics of the financial and economic global architecture are the origin of the problem.”

Asad Rehman, speaking on the global inequities further exacerbated by the pandemic: “…Covid exposed the structural inequalities and injustices…between societies in the north and south. Rich countries responded by throwing away the neoliberal economic rule book that they imposed on others, directly intervening in their economies to safeguard their citizens and economies, whilst denying those very same tools and the financial means for countries in the global South to do the same.”

Rehman, emphasized the emerging threats of the changing climate: “The reality of the climate crisis…  that threatens the lives and livelihoods of so many in LDC countries, is one we are all too aware of. Just last month the current policies in place were assessed…we are heading to a warming of the planet 2.9c that threatens the very existence of many in the global South.”

He further warned: “It is clear to us all that we are in decade zero where the decisions being made will determine who lives, who dies, whose lives don’t matter and who is sacrificed. As the UN special rapporteur on human rights and extreme poverty warned we face a climate apartheid where the rich will seek safety and the poor are left to die.”

Amanda Khozi Mukwashi of Christian Aid reiterated these concerns during a thematic panel at the first Preparatory Committee meeting. She noted: “It is critical that at the very least, rich countries deliver the 100 billion for climate finance that was promised. This should be through additional pledges. They must ensure this is evenly allocated to both mitigation and adaptation initiatives. Alongside this, it is also important that additional financing is needed through a separate mechanism to address the additional impacts of irreversible loss and damage, especially for the small island states.”

Mobilizing international solidarity

Emilia Reyes underlined the need for global support for LDCs: “The problems of the LDCs will not be solved with a micro, local or national approach: they are macro in nature, and these should be addressed with the entire global community, with the LDCs seated at the decision-making table. Articulating the economic and financial dynamics within the new partnership to be developed in LDC5 will be crucial.”

Further, she added: “The weak outcome of the recent Financing for Development process will have an even more negative effect in the LDC’s, given that they are unable to attend elitist forums of decision making…It is therefore crucial to promote in the lead to the General Assembly this year a Monterrey plus or FfD conference to transform the current global dynamics.”

Corporate Taxation & Illicit Finance
Roberto Bissio described the problems of illicit finance in LDCs: “The Mbeki panel has abundantly demonstrated how more money flows out of LDCs through illegal financial transfers, most of it by multinational corporations, that what flows in via ODA… productive investment is badly needed in LDCs. And it has not flowed in as the Istanbul declaration expected.”

Bodo Ellmers of Global Policy Forum called into question international policymaking on tax: “Global tax rules have been and are being negotiated, but the rules disadvantage LDCs, do not take their needs into account. Which is not surprising as they are being negotiated at the OECD, where LDCs have no stake.”

During the first Preparatory Committee meeting, Gabriela Bucher of Oxfam International called for “a system of progressive taxation that taxes at the highest levels of income and of course taxes corporations in LDCs. A critical component to advancing this requires the international community agree upon a global minimum corporate tax.”

She added that changes must be made to ensure progressive taxation: “the fairness and the equitability of the system relies on the poorest not being taxed for the sake of taxing, but rather a fair balance and a fair mix being applied to ensure that those who can afford pay and that there is a fair share of taxes paid”.

Roberto Bissio chimed in: “To not mention those allies of corruption and only point the finger to the existence of corruption in LDC countries adds damage to injury, as the reader easily concludes that LDCs are responsible for their fate and not the victims of a failed global order and the legacy of slavery and colonialism”.

Lending & Debt Cancellation
In his statement at the CSO consultation, Bodo Ellmers of Global Policy Forum outlined the limitations of the IMF’s Special Drawing Rights. Given the fact that IMF Member States determine quotas, only a fraction of the allocation will end up supporting LDCs: “A reallocation mechanism is needed that ensures that the whole SDRs allocation goes to developing countries, with a substantial share to LDCs. This mechanism must preserve the SDR as a financial instrument that does not come with harmful economic policy conditionality attached. The use of SDRs should be determined by foreign actors but by LDCs themselves, in a democratic process.”

At a thematic panel during the official Preparatory Committee meeting, Gabriela Bucher cited the links between debt relief and increasing fiscal space for LDCs to advance social protection policies and the SDGs. She commented: “We need debt relief, canceling all payments, including to private creditors until the end of 2023. LDCs need to be paying for nurses and not paying back debt at the moment. We need to move now to deliver a first step.”

Others also commented on this, critiquing the inadequacy of the G20 efforts thus far. During the CSO consultation Ellmers noted: “The G20 have offered debt suspension to LDCs last year. But debt suspension is not debt reduction. The G20´s “DSSI” in practice just means kicking the can down the road. Many LDCs require actual debt cancellation. The G20´s Common Framework for Debt Treatments beyond the DSSI that was adopted in November has not achieved anything in this regard either.”

Amanda Khozi Mukwashi added, “since covid-19, the share of revenues spent on debt repayments has risen from 20 percent to 30 percent. The IMF estimates over half of these countries in the region are in debt, distress, or at least at high risk of it. The G20’s debt servicing suspension initiative falls far too short of what is needed. Almost half of all African government external debt is owed to commercial creditors who are outside the scope of the deal. Private creditors, including the multilateral development banks, must come to the table.”

Official Development Assistance (ODA)
Gabriela Bucher highlighted the role of ODA during the First Preparatory Committee meeting: “we need more aid. This is not charity, but justice. ODA matters to LDCs making up a full 1/4 of the external finance. So rich countries can do more as they’ve done at home in the pandemic, 0.32% of GNI spent on aid in 2020 is too little.”

This was echoed by Harpinder Collacott of Development Initiatives who called for a shift to thinking of ODA as instead, Global Public Investment: “moving away from the broken promises and the patronizing language of the current only system to assist a new system where all contributors approach public finance as a obligation that they all contribute to and they all receive from based on need.”

What’s missing? What gaps exist?

Gender Equality
Emilia Reyes underscored the gendered inequalities of the labour market, saying:

“We have seen the macro dimension of gender inequalities by realizing that while the larger global corporations’ last year profits rose to US$10.2 trillion, estimations of the value generated by unpaid domestic and care work performed by women amounts to US$10.8 trillion annually –three times the size of the world’s tech industry. The correlation in the extraction of value is quite clear. Add to that the precarious conditions women face in informal jobs, where they are majority. Women have been at the frontline of the response, and yet Women’s human rights have seen a regression of almost 20 years.”

Human Rights
Asad Rehman took into consideration discriminatory policies:

“Be it the response to the Covid pandemic, the ongoing climate crisis, the crisis of  economic inequality and the deliberate impoverishment of so many countries through unjust and unfair neoliberal economic policies , their continues to be an active denial of the universal truth that everyone, simply by being born into our world, has the right to a dignified life.”

Rehman additionally noted: “Just as with the response to the Covid pandemic that prioritizes the economic interests of the global North, through vaccine apartheid, countries in the global North are also basing their own recovery on a massive wave of resource extraction in the global South, whilst refusing to question the intense energy use of the wealthiest societies, or unequal energy distribution and access.”

He concluded: “This is because we have a world riven by deep imbalances of power, generated by historical injustices of recognition, distribution and exclusion. There are systems of injustice that have become entrenched over time, that as a result, we are not equal, neither in our exposure to violence or injustice, nor in our capacity to address it.”

Peace and Conflict
Amanda Khozi Mukwashi of Christian Aid emphasized: “Donors must reassess where their priorities are in order to deliver for least developed countries and stop focusing on security at the expense of peace, human rights and justice. While military expenditure is estimated to have accounted for 2.2 Percent of world gross domestic product in 2019, if even a fraction of this was invested in peacebuilding, we would see more transformative change.”

LDC Graduation
Many CSOs have released an open letter, calling on the US Trade Representative and the European Commission to support the LDCs’ request to extend the TRIPS transition period. This notes that:

“With the Transition Period expiring on 1 July 2021, and with LDCs suffering disproportionately in the midst of the COVID-19 pandemic, we view with alarm the attempts to weaken and undermine the LDC request (IP/C/W/668) and the lack of progress so far.

According to UNCTAD’s LDC Report 2020, LDCs are now facing the worst economic crisis in 30 years as a result of COVID-19, and are expected to see falling income levels, widespread employment losses and widening fiscal deficits. At least 50 percent of the world’s extremely poor live in LDCs, and the current COVID19 crisis is estimated to have pushed at least 32 million more people into poverty in 2020.

The report informs that ‘at least 43 out of the 47 LDCs will likely experience a fall in their average income’ and that ‘the current account deficit of LDCs is forecast to widen from US$41 billion (or 3.8% of their collective GDP) in 2019 to US$61 billion (or 5.6% of their GDP) in 2020, the highest value ever’. Shockingly, the UN Inter-agency Task Force on Financing for Development’s 2021 report has found that ‘COVID-19 could lead to a lost decade for development – one most pronounced in the Least Developed Countries (LDCs).’

At this moment LDCs need maximum policy flexibility. Even before the COVID-19 crisis LDCs faced severe constraints, such as limited availability of skilled labour, productive capacities, access to secondary education, electricity, and internet access. The basic conditions to benefit from full TRIPS implementation are mostly absent in LDCs. They also lack affordable access to knowledge-based goods crucial for sustainable development such as access to health products including for COVID-19 such as ventilators, educational materials, green technologies.”

Demba Dembele pointed out that the Debt Service Suspension Initiative is not the right answer to LDCs needs. But in this time of commitment, what is needed is an unconditional debt cancelation for all LDCs as called for by dozens of countries, several international institutions, civil society organizations and eminent persons”.

Harpinder Collacott of Development Initiatives called for "questioning entrenched power relations to build a much more democratically accountable approach to governance" and to depart "from the insistence that countries graduate after achieving a relatively low level of per capita income to thinking…long term".

Roberto Bissio reiterated the purpose of designating LDCs as a distinct group: “The idea was NOT to set them apart, stigmatize, or imply that those countries should be treated WORSE, but this is in fact what happens, and is also evident in the conceptualization/ some of the background papers for this PrepCom, that need urgently to be revised.”

The post CSO Perspectives on the LDC5 Programme of Action appeared first on Global Policy Watch.

Kategorien: english, Ticker

Middle-class lifestyles start with $ 10 per person and day

Brookings - 2. Juli 2021 - 19:39

By Homi Kharas

      
Kategorien: english

Protecting forests: Are early warning systems effective?

Brookings - 2. Juli 2021 - 19:07

By Eiji Yamada, Hiroaki Okonogi, Takahiro Morita

Forests play an indispensable role in bolstering biodiversity, supporting a stable climate, and providing sustainable livelihoods. Yet, the earth is rapidly losing its forests. In the last 30 years, the world has lost 180 million hectares of forest—greater than the total area of Libya. Forests, especially tropical rainforests, are often cleared by illegal operators to acquire open land for large-scale farming and mining operations, which poses a serious threat to global efforts to reduce deforestation.

Early detection is a critical element of deforestation control efforts. Artificial satellites have played a crucial role here. Using regularly updated optical satellite data, such as LANDSAT, which captures the reflection of sunlight from the ground surface, several early warning systems (EWS) for deforestation have been launched since the 2000s to provide timely information on forest changes for regulators and civil society groups. EWS are now widely used in tropical countries to monitor forest protection. The Global Land Analysis and Discovery (GLAD) laboratory in the Department of Geographical Sciences at the University of Maryland maintains one EWS with publicly available deforestation data. Unfortunately, there is a severe drawback to optical satellite data. As we discuss in our chapter in the forthcoming book “Breakthrough: The Promise of Frontier Technologies for Sustainable Development,” detecting deforestation by optical satellites is substantially harder during the rainy season when cloud coverage is high. This is a serious problem because most of the illegal destruction takes place during the rainy season in the Brazilian Amazon to avoid detection, according to the Brazilian regulatory agency for illegal deforestation.

One solution is to use “radar eyes” in place of “optical eyes.” Radar satellites capture the image of the earth’s surface by catching the reflection of radar waves that the satellite itself generates. These waves can penetrate thick clouds, allowing researchers to identify whether trees exist on land regardless of cloud coverage. Japan’s ALOS-2 radar satellite, for example, can detect 1.5 to 10 times more deforestation than optical satellites during the rainy season in the Amazon area (November to March). Building on these technological advances, a new EWS called JJ-FAST (JICA-JAXA Forest Early Warning System in the Tropics), utilizing the ALOS-2 radar data, was launched in 2016 to provide data on deforestation in tropical countries.

While radar-based EWS can capture deforestation more timely and accurately during the rainy season, has it reduced tropical deforestation? To answer this question, we look at data from the Brazilian Amazon, the only county to date which has used radar-based EWS for deforestation monitoring. We hope that the quantitative evidence provided here will motivate other countries to employ this method to help combat deforestation.

Figure 1 conceptualizes how radar satellite EWS can help prevent deforestation. Suppose there are two forest areas of similar size in the Amazon. In the last three months, say February to April, Area 1 and Area 2 had the same amount of deforestation, measured by area, according to optical data (GLAD). However, images provided by radar data (JJ-FAST) indicate that Area 1 had more extensive deforestation than Area 2. When forest agencies analyze the data, Area 1 is likely to attract more attention, which means that the illegal operators in Area 1 face a higher probability of arrest, incentivizing illegal operators to stop logging and escape. As a result, the deforestation of Area 1 should be smaller in May. Therefore, if radar-based EWS reduces deforestation, there should be a negative correlation between the amount of deforestation detected by radar (JJ-FAST) and deforestation in the subsequent months.

Figure 1. Early warning systems and legal enforcement

Source: Authors

Our data comes from three raster images covering the Brazilian Amazon in 2019—monthly radar data (JJ-FAST), monthly optical data (GLAD), and average monthly cloud cover.

Figure 2.1. GLAD Alerts raster image

Figure 2.2. JJ-FAST raster image

Note: Two images above show the raster data of deforestation by GLAD and JJ-FAST for the same part of the Amazon in February 2019 (rainy season). Cells with darker colors contain larger detected deforestations.
Source: Authors

To investigate whether we can observe a statistically significant negative correlation between the deforestation detected by radar satellite and the deforestation in the following month(s), we estimate the following equation using OLS (ordinary least squares):

Where Yjt is the deforestation area in cell j in month t, reported by GLAD. JJjs is the deforestation detected by the JJ-FAST in the month of s in cell j. GLADjs is the deforestation recorded by GLAD. CLOUDjt is the cloud coverage. Our coefficient of interest is β, which is the correlation between JJ-FAST’s deforestation during three preceding months of t and Yjt. If β is negative and statistically significant, this means that the cells with higher deforestation recorded by JJ-FAST in the past three months have systematically lowered the deforestation record in the current month.

Table 1 reports the results. In sum, we observe that JJ-FAST monitoring significantly reduces deforestation in the Brazilian Amazon. The first column shows the results of the OLS estimation. As expected, the estimate on the effect of cloud coverage, δ, is negative and significant, indicating that higher cloud coverage is associated with a lower record of deforestation by GLAD. The estimate of β implies that a 1 km2 increase in deforestation, as detected by JJ-FAST, in the preceding three months reduces deforestation in the current month by 0.024 km2. To confirm the robustness of these results, we also report fixed effects results at the cell in the second column. With the fixed-effect estimation, the magnitude of the impact of JJ-FAST increases to 0.120.

Our quantitative investigation suggests that radar based EWS effectively reduces deforestation in the Brazilian Amazon. Although further analysis using data from other geographies is needed, our results highlight the important role new technologies can play in protecting global public goods.

      
Kategorien: english

Capturing Africa’s insurance potential for shared prosperity

Brookings - 2. Juli 2021 - 16:39

By Landry Signé

Among the drivers of economic growth and development in emerging countries, insurance is often overlooked in favor of flashier sectors like technology or infrastructure. In fact, though, insurance is a behind-the-scenes factor driving growth at all levels of society, from family life to massive infrastructure projects to technology development. As discussed in my new report, expanding Africa’s lucrative insurance market may be key to creating inclusive prosperity in the region.

Notably, increased penetration rates for insurance throughout African markets are directly connected to Africa’s overall development: Indeed, as Das, Davies, and Podpiera (2003) show, insurance can have positive effects on growth through six mechanisms: improving financial stability for businesses and households; mobilizing savings for public and private investment; reducing pressure on the government to provide public goods such as pensions; encouraging trade and entrepreneurship; mitigating risks and enhanced diversification; and improving social living standards. Other scholars have identified insurance premium thresholds associated with positive economic growth in Africa. Studies of Rwanda’s Universal Health Coverage (UHC) found that increased enrollment was accompanied by higher utilization of health facilities as well a higher presence of skilled-birth attendants.

Expanding Africa’s lucrative insurance market may be key to creating inclusive prosperity in the region.

Despite these advantages, Africa’s aggregate insurance penetration rate in 2019 was only 2.78 percent, compared to the global average insurance penetration rate of 7.23 percent. With increased entry, participation, and expansion from traditional insurance companies and new microinsurance companies (as well as reinsurance companies), the potential for growth across the continent is immense. Recent disruptive events—including an increasing number of natural disasters, political upheavals, and economic disruptions from current and future pandemics—will continue to increase demand and foster rapid growth throughout this sector, particularly of digital insurance platforms.

What does Africa’s insurance market look like now?

The insurance sector is comprised of three subcategories: life insurance, nonlife insurance, and reinsurance. African countries have grown in each of these market segments at varying paces, following their own diverse growth patterns. For example, South Africa’s market is dominated by life insurance premiums, while other countries, like Kenya, Nigeria, and Tunisia, have a much higher volume of nonlife insurance premiums than life ones.

These patterns are suggestive of future trends and point to vast, untapped markets for companies seeking to deliver insurance products that are both affordable and well suited to the mass market. Indeed, just five countries house about 84 percent of the estimated $68.15 billion total value of the continent’s insurance market. South Africa is the leader with about 70 percent of the total market share, followed by Morocco, Kenya, Egypt, and Nigeria. In most other African markets, though, the penetration rate remains below 2 percent.

More specifically, life insurance market penetration has been slow because of the demand for specialized risk-management capacities and heavy investment in security and information gathering, which has left the sector fragmented and dependent on foreign investment. Five countries (South Africa, Morocco, Namibia, Kenya, and Egypt) comprise 92 percent of the life insurance market on the continent. Although McKinsey expressed concern about South Africa’s life insurance market losing ground given the COVID-19 crisis, low market penetration combined with expected increased consumer and business spending by 2030 will continue to create plenty of opportunities in less developed markets across the continent.

Key to the sector’s growth and expansion is the region’s rapidly growing middle class, who can particularly find greater household stability with life insurance. As this segment of the population becomes increasingly aware of the value insurance provides to their households and businesses, they will be more inclined to spend more of their disposable incomes on insurance: In fact, according to an Ernst and Young 2016 survey of African insurance companies, increased earnings in households and businesses were the leading driver of increased insurance premiums.

The pandemic affords an opportunity in the form of consolidation: Unsustainable and inefficient players may be forced out of the market, facilitating innovation, healthy competition among thriving companies, and better coverage. Other experts suggest that commercial insurance for businesses will outpace the growth of individual insurance coverage over the next year, partly because of increasing reinsurance rates. The pandemic has also accelerated the digitalization of local insurance companies, opening the door for a more accessible and inclusive insurance industry in the long term, which could be fostered by a conducive policy environment.

Technology adoption and innovation are the keys to growth in the African insurance industry. Microinsurance could also change the name of the game, as it can reach Africa’s rising middle class through small-scale, low-cost, low-risk products. MicroEnsure, which partners with telecommunications firms, is an example of a successful microfinance venture that offers basic health and life insurance coverage through a free add-on to customers’ existing mobile phone services. Furthermore, micro-health insurance products like Jamii have also entered the market, bringing affordable coverage to low-income populations. Similarly, health financing has been radically changed by mobile and online platforms: M-Tiba facilitates digital management of both public and private health insurance policies through partnerships with governments and providers.

Policy recommendations for managing risks

Recognizing the role the insurance market can play in development, African governments are also working to improve the regulatory climate for insurance investors. Diversification, partnership, and cross-collaboration among insurers and banks is the foundation required to create economies of scale and increase revenues for both sectors. These partnerships, coupled with accelerated digitization to online and mobile platforms, have the potential to increase cost efficiencies and profit margins throughout Africa’s insurance sector—completely transforming the insurance industry.

Africa’s underdeveloped insurance market represents an opportunity both for players in the insurance sector and for African societies in general.

While opportunities abound, there are also risks and challenges for the industry to overcome, including COVID-19 and future pandemics; a decentralized cross-country market with regulatory barriers; gaps in regulatory enforcement; a shortage of technical human capital; low demand for insurance; and market volatility. Thankfully, investment mitigation strategies can help overcome these hurdles: For example, companies will need to invest in both human capital (training and developing qualified staff) and information technologies, adapt to trends in the market, and pursue innovative strategies. Partnerships between companies need to be focused on improving product differentiation, working with government to fill regulatory gaps and barriers, and increasing product awareness in the marketplace.

Africa’s underdeveloped insurance market represents an opportunity both for players in the insurance sector and for African societies in general. The first credible and convenient insurance providers will reap enormous rewards as this sector develops—becoming pioneers in the region. Moreover, African households and businesses can benefit from the reduced risks and increased stability that insurance products can provide.

      
Kategorien: english

Key players in accountable SDG implementation: national human rights institutions

GDI Briefing - 2. Juli 2021 - 15:02

Achieving the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) of the 2030 Agenda will require strong, accountable institutions. Since no global compliance mechanisms are in place, member states need to establish or use their own institutions and mechanisms to be held accountable for SDG implementation. In July 2021, governments, civil society and the private sector will gather at the annual UN High-level Political Forum on Sustainable Development (HLPF) to take stock of progress on the 17 SDGs. The event provides an opportunity to assess progress made in the establishment of national-level accountability frameworks for the SDGs.
Given their legal mandates, national human rights institutions (NHRIs) can play a key role in the implementation and follow-up of the SDGs. However, so far, this role has been scarcely acknowledged by governments in their Voluntary National Reviews (VNRs) on the implementation of the 2030 Agenda.International practice shows that NHRIs play a more active role in providing information for SDG implementation than indicated in the VNRs. For instance, they collect and provide data and build capacities of national institutions. However, NHRIs are rarely represented in national bodies established to oversee SDG implementation. Yet, their ability to support the SDG process increases when they collaborate with the government, get information about SDG policy planning and receive the opportunity to demand explanations about “why” certain policies are adopted and “how” they shall contribute to successful SDG implementation. It is important to note, though, that preconditions for NHRI engagement vary considerably according to country contexts. To strengthen national horizontal accountability in general, and to ensure a human-rights-based approach in implementing the SDGs across all sectors of development, it will be important to:
- Establish NHRIs that are compliant with the Paris Principles. The pace of progress for establishing NHRIs is too slow. Currently, only half of all countries will achieve SDG indicator 16.a.1 (Existence of independent NHRIs in compliance with the Paris Principles) by 2030. The UN and other international organisations should assist gov-ernments in establishing institutions to be in conformity with the Paris Principles and to enable their effective and independent operation.
- Ensure an independent voice for NHRIs. Amidst current autocratisation trends worldwide, fundamental freedoms need to be protected. This allows non-state actors and independent state oversight agencies such as NHRIs to criticise government action and demand human rights in SDG implementation. This will also contribute to the direct implementation of SDG target 16.10 on the protection of fundamental freedoms.
- Enable the participation of NHRIs in national SDG oversight bodies. As a first step, it is necessary that NHRIs themselves raise awareness of their relevant role for better accountability of governments’ SDG implementation among national stakeholders. National governments should include NHRIs in the national SDG infrastructure by ensuring their representation in national SDG oversight bodies or government advisory committees.
- Improve VNR reporting. Governments should make sure to adequately reflect in VNR reporting the role played by NHRIs and assess what they can contribute to national SDG implementation and monitoring.

Kategorien: english

Key players in national SDG accountability: the role of parliaments

GDI Briefing - 2. Juli 2021 - 14:14

Achieving the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) of the 2030 Agenda will require strong accountable institutions. Since no global compliance mechanisms are in place, member states need to establish or use their own institutions to be held accountable for SDG implementation. In July 2021, governments, civil society and the private sector will gather at the annual UN High-level Political Forum on Sustainable Development (HLPF) to take stock of progress on the 17 SDGs. The event provides an opportunity to assess progress made in the establishment of national-level accountability frameworks for the SDGs.
As representatives of the people, parliaments should play a key role in localising the 2030 Agenda and holding governments accountable to their commitments. Over recent years, some progress has been made in enabling parliaments around the world to fulfil their accountability functions. Most notably, almost half of the countries that presented Voluntary National Reviews (VNRs) between 2016 and 2019 reported that capacity-building events took place to inform members of parliament about the SDGs, and parliaments are being increasingly consulted by governments in the process of preparing the VNRs.
However, in addition to a lack of awareness about the 2030 Agenda, several factors constrain parliaments’ SDG accountability function. In many countries, parliamentarians lack access to the data needed to assess governments’ SDG performance, and only a few governments have committed to regularly report on SDG progress beyond the VNRs. Furthermore, only in a third of countries has responsibility
for the SDGs been clearly assigned within the structures of parliament itself. In addition, thus far, parliaments have only been weakly involved in processes of localising the SDGs through the adoption of national SDG implementation strategies and the development of national priority goals and indicators. In general, legislatures’ ability to hold governments accountable has decreased amidst recent autocratisation trends.
Good practices to overcome these obstacles include the use of digital tools to increase the transparency of governments’ fiscal behaviour vis-à-vis parliament and the creation of discursive formats to foster parliament–government dialogues about sustainability transformation. Peer learning will play an important role in disseminating information about such empowering practices among parliamentarians worldwide.
More importantly, however, national governments need to recognise parliaments as critical actors in the SDG process. Amidst current autocratisation trends worldwide, peer pressure by the international community, pressure by independent media and NGOs, and the support of UN agencies will be necessary to strengthen the role of parliaments in promoting SDG accountability.
Parliaments themselves should seek to establish dedicated SDG committees with formal powers to undertake in-depth examinations of government action as well as legislation. This will also contribute to the continuity of parliamentary SDG activities beyond electoral cycles.

Kategorien: english

Inequalities from Covid in the world, only profit seems to be global.

#C20 18 - 2. Juli 2021 - 10:04
Vatican news interviewed Stefania Burbo, Chair of C20, on vaccines access to the more vulnerable ones and requests done by the Civil Society. The interview is in Italian and can be listened here.
Kategorien: english, Ticker

Turning crisis into opportunity: World leaders meet at UN to help drive pandemic recovery

UN #SDG News - 2. Juli 2021 - 6:30
Leading figures from government, business and civil society are preparing to take part in this year’s High Level Political Forum on sustainable development (HLPF), where they will discuss ways to recover from the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic, and turn the deadly crisis into an opportunity for a major shift towards a more sustainable global economy.
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