United NationsDepartment of Economic and Social Affairs Sustainable Development


March 24, 2015
Informal meeting of the plenary on the process of intergovernmental negotiations on the post-2015 development agenda, pursuant to resolution 69/244 and decisions 69/550 and 69/555, focusing on the sustainable development goals, targets and indicators
Remarks by Sofya Simonyan, Permanent Mission of Armenia to United Nations

Distinguished co-facilitators,

My delegation would like to thank you for your continued support and coordination throughout the process of the intergovernmental negotiations, and we appreciate this opportunity to provide an integrated response on the goals, targets and indicators of the post-2015 development agenda.

We welcome the report by the Bureau of the UN Statistical Commission, and we commend the Commission for the rigorous work it has conducted. We also take note of the proposed roadmap for the development of an indicator framework and its suggested timetable aiming at an endorsement of the framework by March 2016.

We share the view that the purpose of the current session is to provide broad political guidance on the way forward, rather than to comment on the indicators. As one of the 70 countries that participated in the survey conducted and finalized earlier this month, Armenia has been able to contribute to this global effort by providing feedback on more than 300 proposed indicators, for the purposes of their initial assessment in terms of feasibility, suitability and relevance. We would like to thank the international statistical community for this initiative, and we hope the inputs we have provided will result in a set of reliable, relevant and valid global indicators to monitor and measure the progress of the post-2015 development agenda.

In doing so, we think it is important to build upon the experiences and lessons learned from the Millennium Development Goals. In this regard, we welcome the panel for sharing national experiences of member-states on their paths of transitioning from MDGs and SDGs, organized in the framework of this session.

The transition from MDGs to SDGs represents a paradigm shift from poverty reduction to addressing the underlying causes of poverty, and it is in line with this global approach that the Government of Armenia has updated its strategy on poverty reduction by placing focus on development of human capital and employment growth. The Development Strategy adopted by Armenia for the upcoming decade places the socially vulnerable groups at the center, by gradually replacing the conventionally predominant monetary assistance with need-based comprehensive packages of services aiming to build capacities and enhance opportunities. By doing so, we believe it will support the vulnerable groups through effective assistance to pursue education, healthcare, housing and other needs, as well as will promote their inclusion in the labour market and stimulate their financial and economic activity. The Strategy aims to ensure a continuous improvement of business environment to promote entrepreneurship, innovation and employment, with a key focus on regional and rural development, agriculture and environment.

Distinguished co-facilitators,

In addressing structural drivers of poverty and inequality and unsustainable development, we believe we should be guided by what is most practical in helping us formulate a shared vision on the transformative agenda to make sure that post 2015 indeed becomes a time of opportunity for everyone and everywhere. While we share the view that SDGs should serve as the main framework for the post-2015, we highlight the need to give proper consideration to other important inputs in the formulation of the post-2015 to support the developmental needs of countries facing specific challenges, such as landlocked developing countries.

The Vienna Programme of Action for Landlocked Developing Countries for the decade 2014-2024 has been endorsed by the member states as a blueprint for the development of the LLDCs, and it will be important to take this document into account in the process of formulation of the post-2015 development agenda as well as for the purposes of elaboration of the indicators.

As a landlocked country facing serious structural constraints and developmental challenges, Armenia views mobility and transportation central to sustainable development. In this regard, we highlight the importance of promoting efficient movement of people and goods, and access to environmentally sound, safe and affordable transportation as a means to improve social equity, connectivity and productivity. We also emphasize the importance of facilitating border-crossings, improving transport networks and making best use of existing infrastructure, in particular, on the main international networks.

We believe that the integration of the Vienna Programme of Action and its six priority areas into the post-2015 will help promote inclusive development and equitable growth in the formulation of a truly transformative development agenda that leaves no one behind.

We share the concern expressed in the statement of the landlocked developing countries about the low rate of response to the post-2015 indicators questionnaire among the LLDCs. In this regard, we would like to highlight the importance of a renewed sense of commitment for partnerships and cooperation at multiple levels, to facilitate capacity-building, information-sharing and technology transfer for sustainable development. We call on the member states to intensify efforts to strengthen international cooperation to build and improve statistical capacity and generate real time, disaggregated quality data enabling for the monitoring of the progress through a set of universal and harmonised global indicators and to ensure that a wide range of stakeholders are involved in the production and analysis of data. We share the view that global indicators should be supported and supplemented by national and regional indicators. In this regard, we would like to highlight the added value of participation in various regional cooperation formats, including through cross-border cooperation, to facilitate technology transfer, information-sharing and capacity building, and we stand ready to provide support to this process, at all stages.

I thank you, distinguished co-facilitators.