Countries Resume Discussion of VNR Preparations at Second Global Workshop
Photo by IISD/ENB | Kiara Worth
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The second global workshop for countries that will present their VNRs at the 2019 HLPF took place in Bonn, Germany.

Organized by DESA and the UNSSC, with the support of the German BMZ, the workshop considered: VNR ownership; scope and content of VNR reports; leveraging data for SDG implementation; engaging non-state actors in the VNR process; mobilizing resources for the implementation of the 2030 Agenda; and next steps.

A total of 50 countries are expected to present VNRs in 2019.

20 February 2019: A second workshop took place for countries that will report on national progress to implement the SDGs at the July 2019 session of the UN High-level Political Forum on Sustainable Development (HLPF). Participants took stock of preparations for the Voluntary National Reviews (VNR), outlining areas of progress and challenges faced. A total of 50 countries are expected to present VNRs in 2019.

The Second Global Workshop for countries presenting a VNR in 2019 took place from 19-20 February, in Bonn, Germany, following a first global workshop, which convened from 16-17 October 2018, in Geneva, Switzerland. The Bonn workshop was organized by the UN Department of Economic and Social Affairs’ (DESA) Office of Intergovernmental Support and Coordination for Sustainable Development (OISC) and the UN System Staff College (UNSSC). It was supported by Germany’s Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development (BMZ).

The VNRs were called for in the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development to facilitate the sharing of national experiences, including successes, challenges and lessons learned, with a view to accelerating SDG implementation. They are presented at the HLPF when it is convened by the UN Economic and Social Council (ECOSOC) each year in July. Of the 50 countries expected to present their VNRs in 2019, nine have already presented a review in a previous year.

According to the UNSSC, the event was attended by national delegates of VNR countries, officials from UN Regional Commissions, other UN entities, and the European Commission. Participants discussed: VNR ownership; ensuring engagement by governments and public institutions; scope and content of VNR reports; leveraging data for SDG and VNR national implementation; engaging non-state actors in the VNR process; mobilizing resources for the implementation of the 2030 Agenda; and next steps in the VNR preparation process. The article also notes that the workshop considered how the VNRs will be presented and discussed at the HLPF in July, adding that lessons learned identified will contribute to the review of the HLPF during the 74th session of the UN General Assembly (UNGA).

A third global VNR preparatory workshop will take place before the 2019 session of the HLPF.

In addition to convening under ECOSOC in July, the HLPF will also take place under the auspices of the UNGA in September 2019, at the level of Heads of State and Government. [UNSSC news] [ECOSOC President’s newsletter]


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