A publication by the UN Regional Commissions (RCs) on 'Implementation of the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development: The Role of the Regional Commissions,' highlights the significance of the regional dimension of development.
It also discusses the potential role of RCs in implementing the Agenda and its Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) through: providing technical support; leveraging means of implementation (MOI); and facilitating effective follow-up and review.
27 September 2015: A publication by the UN Regional Commissions (RCs) on ‘Implementation of the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development: The Role of the Regional Commissions,’ highlights the significance of the regional dimension of development. It also discusses the potential role of RCs in implementing the Agenda and its Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) through: providing technical support; leveraging means of implementation (MOI); and facilitating effective follow-up and review.
The paper covers several priority areas for supporting Member States, in cooperation with the UN Development system, including: integrating SDGs into national development planning and fiscal frameworks; promoting policy coherence, consistency and coordination; enhancement of data and statistical capacities of Member States; identifying and promoting alternative and innovative sources of financing for development; leveraging science, technology and innovation (STI); and tapping South-South and regional partnerships.
On integrating SDGs into national development planning and fiscal frameworks, the publication notes that most RCs have developed in-house capacities for macro and sector research and analysis, as well as expert and multi-stakeholder networks. These will be used, the paper says, to standardize integrated models, identify best practices and share methodologies and knowledge in order to: facilitate the harmonization of approaches to integration; enable inter-regional comparability; and foster the exchange of best practices and lessons learned.
On promoting policy coherence, consistency and coordination, the paper says the 2015 meetings of the Regional Forums for Sustainable Development (RFSDs) helped institutionalize the fora as intergovernmental mechanisms for implementing Agenda 2030 through: facilitating consensus on regional road maps for SDGs implementation; producing regional annual reports; serving as peer review mechanisms; and finding ways to strengthen national institutional frameworks for SDG implementation. In addition to the RFSDs, the publication notes, Regional Coordination Mechanisms (RCMs) will provide an integrated development framework to coordinate the policy and analytical work of the entire UN system across each region, and support coordination with the UN Development Group (UNDG), in the implementation, follow-up and review of the SDGs in the regions.
On enhancement of data and statistical capacities of Member States, the publication explains that the RCs will: assess data and statistical gaps in measurement of the SDGs; strengthen data ecosystems; offer policy advice; assist in the modernization of statistics; advance better use of big data and open government initiatives; promote environmental accounting through mainstreaming and integration; manage technical cooperation programs for building capacities in data and indicators; and ensure that programmes have strong country ownership through their national statistical offices (NSOs).
On identifying and promoting alternative and innovative sources of financing for development, the paper notes that the RCs will: engage with countries to improve enabling environments for trade and finance flows; work with providers on small and medium enterprise (SME) finance and financial inclusion; develop approaches to the challenges of middle income countries (MICs); promote public-private partnerships (PPPs); address the challenges of illicit financial flows (IFFs); and strengthen regional financing arrangements.
On leveraging STI, the RCs will: work to leverage advanced regional STI hubs to offer best practices and share their experience in STI policymaking, standard-setting and creating ICT-related legislation; continue to hold regional ministerial conferences on STI; ensure the inclusion of national and regional expert communities of relevant ministries, service providers, national innovation centers, research institutions, universities, civil society and other key actors; and continue supporting Member States in building resilience to the impacts of climate variability and change.
On tapping South-South and regional partnerships, the publication notes that the RCs will build on established relationships and evolving partnerships for further research, identification of policy tools and incentive frameworks, best practice and knowledge sharing, in order to reinforce the partnerships.
The five UN Regional Commissions are: the Economic Commission for Africa (ECA); the Economic Commission for Latin America and the Caribbean (ECLAC); the Economic and Social Commission for Asia and the Pacific (ESCAP); the Economic and Social Commission for Western Asia (ESCWA); and the Economic Commission for Europe (UNECE). [Publication: Implementation of the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development: the Role of the Regional Commissions] [Regional Commissions New York Office (RCNYO)]