United NationsDepartment of Economic and Social Affairs Sustainable Development

Japan

Intergovernmental negotiations on the post-2015 development agenda
Third meeting on Goals and Targets
Statement by Mr. Takeshi Osuga, Ambassador,
Deputy Director-General for International Cooperation and Global Issues

25 March 2015


I’d like to share Japan’s view regarding the “technical tweaking” suggested by the TST through the Co-facilitators.

With utmost respect to the intergovernmental process conducted under the Open Working Group, I believe the tweaking of some of the targets in its report need not and should not be perceived in a dramatic manner, nor in a take-all or leave-all manner.

I agree that “explanatory rationale for the proposed change” in the paper is not clear enough and need to be further elaborated, including by providing scientific evidence such as the baseline and projections toward the target year.

Just as an example, as the host country of the Sendai Conference on Disaster Risk Reduction, I can provide some complimentary explanation regarding the “tweaking” of the targets 11.5 and 11.b. of the OWG report.

It you read carefully the target 11.b, it reads, “develop and implement, in line with the forthcoming Hyogo Framework, holistic disaster risk management at all levels.” OWG implied and envisaged that the substance of the target would be adjusted in accordance with the outcome of the Sendai meeting.

Based on the OWG report, UN Member States represented in Geneva started their work as early as in September last year to define the “x” and refine the targets in the OWG report under the able facilitation of the distinguished permanent representative of Jamaica, His Excellency Ambassador Weine Mackook, with the technical inputs from ISDR. 187 Member States that participated in the Sendai Conference last week agreed on 7 targets including those under the goal 11 of the OWG report. If you don’t believe me, please call your respective colleague in Geneva and check.

Furthermore, GA Resolution 68/309 that decided that the proposal of the OWG-SDGs should be the main basis for integrating SDGs into the post-2015 development agenda, recognized that “other inputs” will also be considered in the intergovernmental negotiation process at the 69the session.

Therefore, there is no reason to reject or to be allergic to technical tweaking of targets. In doing so, we should take practical and pragmatic approach and look into each one of the 19 targets that the TST proposes tweaking on. We should not adopt “take it or leave it” approach. Such exercise will take time, will need more convincing technical inputs from TST and relevant agencies, but I believe there is a merit in doing so if we want to come up with a good set of targets for our leaders to endorse in September.

Thank you very much.
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