UN Secretary-General emphasises importance of sustainable development goals

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Speaking at the Sustainable Development Goals (SDG) Moment, a major event marking the start of the General Assembly High-Level Week, the UN Secretary-General has said that SDGs offer a roadmap to recovery for a world facing challenges unlike anything before. Joined by more than 30 Heads of State, the Secretary-General outlined how the SDG Moment is all about coming together to save the planet and each other. 

“Going forward, the gaps in political will and resource commitment remain a common fault line, hampering progress towards reaching the SDGs,” Abdulla Shahid, president of the General Assembly, said. “This must change. Let the setback that the world has seen strengthen our resolve and reinforce our determination to recover from the pandemic and to build the SDGs.”

Heading up the 76th General Assembly’s High-Level Week, the SDG Moment is held in advance of major meetings on food systems, climate, energy, jobs and social protection. The SDG event is designed to build the momentum needed to deliver on the decade of action and keep the promise of the SDGs.  Besides world leaders, leaders from business, civil society, local authorities, the SDG Advocates and the UN, highlighted the need to scale up solutions. 

For the UN to get the SDGs back on track and prevent the worst impacts of climate change, a profound shift in economies and societies everywhere is now needed. In the last 18 months, COVID-19 has disrupted economies and livelihoods, deepened inequalities and risks sending more than 70 million people into extreme poverty. In the same period, progress on reducing greenhouse gas emissions has been too slow and biodiversity loss has continued at an extraordinary pace. This is compounded by a deeply uneven global response to the pandemic with the world’s poorest countries and people suffering the most. Recognising this urgency, the UN launched a new campaign, Keeping the Promise. The digital campaign calls on people around the world to make a promise to take action for a better future for all. 

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