Category: UN Monitor

LDCs present VNRs at the HLPF (13–15 July 2021)

By Barbara Adams and Tejaswini Vavilala
The second PrepCom session will take place on 26-30 July 2021 and will launch negotiations on the Programme of Action for LDCs for the next decade, a decade that coincides with the last decade of the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development.
This is the last HLPF before the Doha conference / LDC5. During the HLPF Ministerial segment of the HLPF, eight LDCs will present their Voluntary National Reviews (VNRs), making a total of 53 LDC VNR presentations over the last six years, many by countries for the second, and some for a third, time. Read more

CSO Perspectives on the LDC5 Programme of Action

By Elena Marmo and Alexa Sabatini
The Fifth UN Conference on the LDC5 will be held In Doha in January 2022. Preparations are already underway to negotiate the Outcome Document to be adopted in Doha, which will serve as a new 10-year Programme of Action for the LDCs.
On 20 May 2021, Co-Chairs of the LDC5 Preparatory Committee bureau–Rabab Fatima, Permanent Representative of Bangladesh and Bob Rae, Permanent Representative of Canada–facilitated a virtual consultation with CSOs, designed to address policy prescriptions that LDC5 must deliver to meet the needs of people and planet. Read more

ONLINE | Voluntary National Reports on the 2030 Agenda: What can we learn for a post-pandemic world?

The Committee for Development Policy (CDP) will discuss with Civil Society Reflection Group their key findings of its analysis of 2020 VNRs, highlighting the disconnect between the ambition of the agenda and the attention given to the transformative policies in such areas as productive capacities, pandemic preparedness, inequalities and sustainable consumption and production. Read more

UNGA Revitalization and selecting the next Secretary-General

By Elena Marmo
In 2007, the UN General Assembly (UNGA) established an Ad Hoc Working Group on the revitalization of the work of the General Assembly (AHWG) which in recent years has addressed the selection process of the UN Secretary-General (S-G). The current S-G Antonio Guterres’ five-year term is set to expire on 31 December 2021 and Member States have begun activities for the 2021 selection and appointment for the UN S-G position, including a thematic debate on the selection process on 23 April. Read more

Broad consensus, paltry results. The UN Forum on Financing for Development 2021

By Bodo Ellmers
The UN Forum on FfD 2021 was the first FfD forum held as planned since the outbreak of the COVID-19 crisis. Accordingly, the expectations were high. Development finance is currently facing a triple challenge: to mitigate the humanitarian crisis, funds for an acute crisis response are needed – for example, to finance universal access to vaccines through the COVAX-facility, or for social protection measures. To mitigate the further divergence between countries, resources must be made available for economic stimulus programmes in the Global South that match those of the Global North. To prevent the failure of the Agenda 2030, the SDG financing gap that already existed before the COVID-19 crisis and has widened as a result of the crisis must be filled. The UN FfD Forum 2021 was a pivotal moment on the international policy calendar to take the necessary steps. Read more

COVID-19 & LDCs: Upcoming opportunities to address structural impediments

By Elena Marmo and Barbara Adams
The United Nations and Member States begin the 2021 calendar confronted with the need to address the ongoing COVID-19 crisis and growing global inequalities. Despite the WHO’s efforts to make the COVID-19 vaccine “affordable and accessible for all” through the ACT Accelerator and calls by CSOs and UN leadership and world leaders for a People’s Vaccine (a global public good free from Intellectual Property Rights), the global vaccine distribution/rollout has been dominated by wealthy, developed countries, with little if any vaccines available for small and medium developing countries. Read more

Women’s Major Group Position Paper on the HLPF Review

By Elena Marmo
As the global community coalesced to celebrate the 75th Anniversary of the United Nations in September 2020 under the shadow of COVID-19, Member States in their Declaration A/RES/75/1, made commitments to strengthen the multilateral system and set forth plans to “build back better”. Among the tools to do so, as recognized by UN leadership and Member States, are the 2030 Agenda and its Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). Their importance is highlighted by marking 2020 as the start of the Decade of Action, the final 10 years to achieve the SDGs, as well as the widespread recognition that COVID-19 is threatening to reverse development gains over the past decade. Read more

Where the rubber meets the road

By Barbara Adams and Roberto Bissio
A survey among CSOs in “programme countries” evidences a very high level of commitment to UN values and principles, much dissatisfaction with the actual operations at country level and articulation of areas for improvement.
For a number of CSOs, the UN system is appreciated for its inspiration, legitimization and promotion of the values they stand for, but is also viewed as a competitor for funds and influence, often displacing the social sector instead of building it. And frequently it is seen as both at the same time. Read more

UN General Assembly Special Session: Transformation or Continuation of the Status Quo?

By Elena Marmo
The General Assembly (GA) will host its 31st Special session in response to the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) pandemic on 3 and 4 December 2020. The UN Charter (Chapter IV, article 20) provides for the General Assembly to meet in special sessions which can be "convoked by the Secretary-General at the request of the Security Council or of a majority of the Members of the United Nations." Read more