United Nations Department of Economic and Social Affairs Sustainable Development

Mr. Wu Hongbo, Under-Secretary-General for Economic and Social Affairs

Mr. Wu Hongbo
Under-Secretary-General for Economic and Social Affairs
Opening remarks
Partnership Exchange
17 July 2017, New York
Your Excellency, Mr. Peter Thomson, President of the General Assembly,
Distinguished Delegates,
Ladies and Gentlemen,
It is my pleasure to welcome you to this second Partnership Exchange, organized in the margins of the High-level Political Forum on Sustainable Development.
I thank the President of ECOSOC for his leadership, and also recognize the UN Office for Partnerships for their wonderful collaboration in co-organizing this event with DESA.
I also thank all governments, UN system colleagues, and partnership representatives for your contributions. Through your collaborative spirit, you are helping deliver on the promise of the 2030 Agenda.
The High-level Political Forum – HLPF – the UN’s central platform for the follow-up and review of the 2030 Agenda – is leading the way forward on partnerships.
Indeed, partnership is one of the 5 Ps – people, planet, prosperity, peace and partnership. Partnership, with its emphasis on coherence, linkages and collaboration, is part of the HLPF discussion.
Last week, governments, stakeholders and leading experts came together to assess progress made towards 7 SDGs. Throughout the sessions, we witnessed a rich exchange of ideas, lessons learned and actions taken, in partnership, to advance the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development.
In this regard, I also wish to thank representatives of the voluntary national review (VNR) countries for being here today, and for sharing their national experiences. Your presence will provide an important basis for our exchange with the partnership presenters today.
Ladies and Gentlemen,
The UN has a long history of fostering and promoting the work of collaborative arrangements, with the participation of all sectors of society.
Just three years ago, the 2014 Small Island Developing States Conference, held in Samoa, recognized that partnerships are an important vehicle for driving sustainable development in SIDS.
A key outcome of the Conference was the creation of a SIDS Partnership Framework. This Framework provides an innovative mechanism to follow-up on such partnerships, including by providing a space for dialogue among SIDS and partnership practitioners.
At the recent Ocean Conference, held only a few weeks ago and co-hosted by the governments of Fiji and Sweden, the international community came together to collectively Save our Ocean. Close to 1,400 voluntary commitments were announced to advance implementation of SDG 14.
These commitments represent a wave of cross-cutting and innovative solutions from all stakeholders. Their successful delivery will not only advance SDG 14 implementation – but many other SDGs as well.
In preparation for today’s event, my department has prepared a paper that contains specific proposals on how to follow-up on the voluntary commitments from the Ocean Conference. This afternoon’s session on SDG 14 will be an opportunity for you to provide feedback on this paper, which is posted on the Partnership Exchange web page.
Distinguished participants,
SDG 17 recognizes that multi-stakeholder partnerships are important vehicles to mobilize and share knowledge, expertise, technologies, and financial resources to support the implementation of the SDGs.
To support such partnerships, my department is maintaining the Partnership for SDGs online platform. This platform has grown exponentially over the past few years. Today it contains access to over 3,600 partnerships and voluntary commitments on the SDGs.
This growth is a clear sign of the commitment and effort made by governments, UN system entities, IGOs, and other stakeholders to implement the SDGs worldwide. It demonstrates that ownership of the 2030 Agenda has been firmly rooted everywhere.
Member States have also stressed the need to improve transparency, accountability and the sharing of experiences of multi-stakeholder partnerships, and on the review and monitoring of these partnerships.
In response, DESA, together with the UN Global Compact, has developed the Partnership Data for SDGs framework. This framework aims to unify how information around partnerships is published on UN websites.
It will help improve the way we monitor and review partnerships, as well assess existing gaps. Immediately following this opening session you will hear a detailed presentation about this framework.
Ladies and gentlemen,
The 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development is a pathway towards a sustainable future for all, leaving no one behind, with a peaceful and inclusive society, and a healthy planet.
We can only get there by working together.
I hope this Partnership Exchange will continue to serve as a platform for sharing innovations, knowledge and expertise, and for identifying lessons learned and best practices.
I wish you all a fruitful exchange and insightful dialogue.
Thank you.