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During its Coordination and Management Meeting, the UN Economic and Social Council adopted the indicator framework developed by the Inter-Agency and Expert Group on SDGs indicators.

The resolution will be transmitted to the UN General Assembly for adoption.

7 June 2017: The UN Economic and Social Council (ECOSOC) adopted the indicator framework developed by the Inter-Agency and Expert Group on SDGs indicators (IAEG-SDGs), as contained in the draft resolution on the ‘Work of the Statistical Commission pertaining to the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development.’ The resolution will be transmitted to the UN General Assembly (UNGA) for adoption.

The adoption of the indicator framework took place during the Coordination and Management Meeting (CMM) of ECOSOC on 7 June 2017. During the meeting, delegates considered the report of the 48th session of the UN Statistical Commission (UNSC 48) (E/CN.3/2017/35), which contains the draft resolution.

The UNSC agreed on the draft resolution at the end of its 48th session in March 2017, recommending that ECOSOC adopt the global indicator framework for the SDGs and targets of the 2030 Agenda developed by the IAEG-SDGs, before recommending it to the UNGA for adoption.

Presenting the report of UNSC 48 (via video conference), Wasmália Socorro Barata Bivar, UNSC Chair, Brazil, noted that the broad scope of the 2030 Agenda calls for an unprecedented amount of data and statistics to fully measure progress on the SDGs and their targets. In this context, she said, the UNSC was given its biggest challenge when the UNGA tasked it with developing the global indicator framework to measure progress on the SDGs. She remarked that the indicator framework seeks to provide a structure to address all aspects of the SDGs and their targets in the SDG progress report at the global level.

Bivar said the resolution that contains the indicators also outlines areas of work of the IAEG-SDGs, including on further refining and improving the indicator framework. Per the draft resolution, the indicator framework will be refined annually, and reviewed comprehensively by the UNSC at its 51st session in 2020 and at its 56th session in 2025. She added that the resolution also calls for strengthening countries’ capacity to produce the necessary data, and that the Cape Town Global Action Plan for Sustainable Development Data, launched at the first UN World Data Forum in January 2017 and endorsed by UNSC 48, is important in this regard.

Before adopting the draft resolution, Cuba remarked that the indicator framework is a good point of departure, and welcomed future refinements. She said some indicators, including SDG 3.5.2 (Harmful use of alcohol), do not cover all aspects of their related SDG targets, and should be reviewed by 2020. Mexico stressed the need to build capacity and provide technical assistance to African countries, the least developed countries (LDCs), landlocked developing countries (LLDCs), and middle income countries, among others.

After the adoption of the resolution, the US said it was pleased to join the consensus in adopting the SDG indicator framework, but many indicators (including Tier 1 indicators) contain “serious weaknesses” that could hinder reporting. He noted that other concerns are unresolved, and the US will continue to engage and provide comments to strengthen the framework.

The ECOSOC CMM meetings are part of the substantive sessions of ECOSOC and seek to: review the reports of ECOSOC subsidiary and expert bodies; consider special country situation or regional issues that are on the agenda of ECOSOC; and ensure system-wide coordination and review of specific development issues, with a view to promoting a more integrated response to specific areas. [Meeting Webpage] [IISD Sources] [UNSC 48 Report, Including Resolution on the ‘Work of the UN Statistical Commission pertaining to the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development’] [SDG Knowledge Hub Story on IAEG-SDGs Fifth Meeting] [SDG Knowledge Hub Update on SDG Indicators] [SDG Knowledge Hub Story on UNSC 48] [Meeting Summary]


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