العربية
s

The World Government Summit Organization hosts an international meeting to accelerate the implementation of the SDGs and announces 2nd term of the Global Councils on SDGs initiative with a wide global participation

20 September 2021


Share the Article
Facebook
Twitter
LinkedIn

The World Government Summit Organization in partnership with the Federal Competitiveness and Statistics Centre and the Permanent Mission of the United Arab Emirates to the United Nations hosted the inaugural meeting that took place virtually under the theme “Galvanizing the Global Acceleration of the SDGs” on the sidelines of the 76th session of the United Nations General Assembly.

  • The launch of the second term of the Global Councils on SDGs initiative with a wide global participation
  • Ministers and global policymakers leading a number of the Global Councils
  • 18 Global Councils to accelerate the implementation of the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development

Dubai, September 2021: The World Government Summit Organization in partnership with the Federal Competitiveness and Statistics Centre and the Permanent Mission of the United Arab Emirates to the United Nations hosted the inaugural meeting that took place virtually under the theme “Galvanizing the Global Acceleration of the SDGs” on the sidelines of the 76th session of the United Nations General Assembly.

The inaugural meeting witnessed the soft launch of the second term of the Global Councils on SDGs 2021 - 2023, in which several ministers and policymakers from the United Arab Emirates are leading a number of the Global Councils. The second term of the Global Councils on SDGs will have 18 Councils drive impact towards the implementation of the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development to rebuild sustainably post COVID-19.

The meeting was attended by Her Excellency Reem bint Ebrahim Al Hashimy, Minister of State for International Cooperation and the Chairwoman of the UAE National Committee on SDGs, His Excellency Omar Sultan Al Olama,  Minister of State for Artificial Intelligence, Digital Economy and Remote Work Applications, and the Managing Director of the World Government Summit, His Excellency Abdulla Nasser Lootah, the Director General of the Prime Minister’s Office and the Vice chair of the UAE National Committee on SDGs, The Right Honorable Helen Clark the 37th Prime Minister of New Zealand, and former Administrator of the United Nations Development Programme and distinguished chairpersons.

The Chairpersons discussed innovative solutions for the SDGs, and the importance of mobilizing international support needed for global acceleration to implement the SDGs. Furthermore, they looked into opportunities for collaboration and establishing strong partnerships that bring together various stakeholders involved in the fulfilment of the SDGs from countries, international organizations and members of civil society.

Reem Al Hashimy:  Diverting from a singular SDG approach to a nexus approach in order to accelerate achieving the Global Goals

Her Excellency Reem bint Ebrahim Al Hashimy, Minister of State for International Cooperation and the Chairwoman of the UAE National Committee on SDGs confirmed that “Today we welcome 18 distinguished Councils who will embark on the second term of the Global Councils on SDGs. The term will divert from a singular SDG approach to a nexus approach. Giving the complexity and interlinkages of the SDGs, the Councils will galvanize and accelerate the implementation of the goals through innovative partnerships, inspiring projects, and informative white papers that will advance our understanding of one another as well as the challenges we face as a society today.”

Omar Sultan Al Olama: Sustainable Development is at the core of the government direction and a key topic on the summit’s agenda

His Excellency Omar Sultan Al Olama, Minister of State for Artificial Intelligence, Digital Economy and Remote Work Applications, and the Managing Director of the World Government Summit Organization, stated that “the fulfillment of the SDGs is at the core of the UAE governments direction, and a key pillar on the agenda of the World Government Summit. Since its launch at the summit, the initiative strived to support international efforts and serve as an open platform for collaboration, cooperation and development of initiatives and solutions to achieve the Global Goals”. 

His Excellency continued: “The World Government Summit is keen on strengthening partnerships for the benefit of communities and the creation of a better future for the next generations”. Moreover, he indicated that achieving the SDGs is a shared responsibility between governments, private sector, international organizations, and members of civil society.

Abdulla Lootah: The UAE Government is keen on supporting the efforts to implement the SDGs

His Excellency Abdulla Nasser Lootah, the Director General of the Prime Minister’s Office and the Vice chair of the UAE National Committee on SDGs said, “The launch of the second term of the Global Councils on SDGs through this platform, hosted by the UAE’s government and through the World Government Summit platform, emphasizes the government and the National Committee’s commitment to support and strengthen international efforts to achieve the SDGs, and actively participate in finding solutions and mechanisms to accelerate the implementation.

He added, “The UAE government is keen on actively participating in the international efforts to establish a global system that embeds concepts of sustainable development in designing and building the future”. Furthermore, he stressed on the importance of building on the achievements of the Global Councils on SDGs, which contributes to the continuation of the global journey for a more sustainable future.

Her Excellency Lana Nusseibeh, Ambassador and Permanent Representative of the United Arab Emirates to the United Nations in New York  added “ We have less than 10 years to meet the objectives we’ve set out for ourselves in the SDGs. The SDGs are our blueprint for sustainable recovery out of the pandemic and we need all hands on deck. I welcome the launch of the second phase of the Global Councils on SDGs, who are delivering exactly the kinds of hands-on, pragmatic solutions that we need to turbo-charge the SDGs.”

18 Global Councils to drive impact within the second term of the Global Councils on SDGs

The second term will have 18 Councils driving impact towards the implementation of the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development through innovative projects, whitepapers, or initiatives to rebuild sustainably in post COVID-19.

The second term represents ten (10) first term Global Councils who are continuing their journeys, and eight (8) new global councils are joining the global movement in support to the global implementation of the SDGs. The Chairpersons of the Global Councils on SDGs 2021 to 2023 are:

  1. His Excellency Suhail Al Mazrouei, Minister of Energy and Infrastructure, United Arab Emirates (Chairperson of SDG 11 Global Council),
  2. The Right Honorable Helen Clark the 37th Prime Minister of New Zealand, and former Administrator of the United Nations Development Programme (Chairperson of SDG 16 Global Council),
  3. Dr. Mahmoud Mohieldin Executive Director, International Monetary Fund, United Nations Special Envoy (Chairperson of SDG 1 Global Council),
  4. Her Excellency Mona Al Marri, Vice President of the UAE Gender Balance Council (Chairperson of SDG 5 Global Council), and
  5. His Excellency Dr Tariq Al Gurg, Chief Executive Officer and Vice-Chairman of Dubai Cares (Chairperson of SDG 4 Global Council).

    In addition to the five (5) first term chairpersons, continuing in the second term, 5 additional Councils from the first term will continue work programs with new chairpersons. The Chairpersons of these Councils are;

  6. His Excellency Francesco La Camera, Director General of International Renewable Energy Agency (IRENA) (Chairperson of SDG 7 Global Council),
  7. Dr. Muhammad Ali Pate, Julio Frenk Professor of the Practice of Public Health Leadership, Harvard, is co-chairing the SDG 3 Global Council with, Dr Zsuzsanna Jakab, Deputy Director-General, World Health Organization,
  8. Marie Aimee Boury, Head of Impact Based Finance at Societe Generale Corporate and Investment Banking (Chairperson of the SDG Finance Advisory Board),
  9. Dr. Tatyana Teplova, Head of Division, Policy Coherence for SDGs, Senior Counsellor for Gender Equality, Justice and Inclusiveness, OECD (Chairperson of the SDG 17 Global Council), and
  10. Ibrahim Al-Zu'bi, Chairman of the Corporate Board, Chief Sustainability Officer, Majid Al Futtaim (Chairperson of the SDG 13 Global Council).

The new Global Councils who are joining hands to galvanize and accelerate global implementation of the SDGs, will establish nexus models. The SDGs are interlinked and the impact on one SDG, will have impact on another (or more). Therefore, the partnership redesigned the direction of the Councils to include the nexus approach. Chairpersons of the nexus approach are:

  1. Dr. Elizabeth Cousens, President and Chief Executive Officer of the UN Foundation
  2. Ms. Hana Al Rostamani, Group Chief Executive Officer, First Abu Dhabi Bank
  3. Mr. Mohammad Al Hashimy, Deputy Group General Counsel and Company Secretary, DP World
  4. Dr. Manal Taryam, Chief Executive Officer and Board Member, Noor Dubai Foundation
  5. Dr. Sonia Ben Jaafar, Chief Executive Officer of the Abdulla Al Ghurair Foundation for Education
  6. Mrs. Isobel Abulhoul, Chief Executive Officer and Trustee of the Emirates Literature Foundation
  7. Mr. Luc Remont, Executive Vice-President, International Operations, Schneider Electric
  8. Mr. Clint Brown, Director of Product Engineering, Esri

Helen Clark: Urgent need for change and effective action

The Right Honorable Helen Clark, the 37th Prime Minister of New Zealand, and former Administrator of the United Nations Development Programme stressed upon the urgent need for effective and collective action and stated, “Many countries have expressed strong political commitment to achieving the SDGs by 2030. Good intentions and public commitment don’t automatically translate, policies into effective action. Realities are very complex and the challenges enormous. COVID-19 has made it even clearer that systemic change is urgently needed. To make it happen, we need capable and skilled leaders in the driver’s seat, both domestically and internationally. They must be supported by effective, transparent, and accountable civil servants with high levels of integrity. That’s what our Council will discuss and work on.”

Suhail Al Mazrouei: International cooperation is needed to promote the scaling and deployment of sustainable solutions

His Excellency Suhail Al Mazrouei, Minister of Energy and Infrastructure, United Arab Emirates, stated “Achieving the sustainable development goals is a shared responsibility that requires a clear approach from those concerned to overcome the challenges faced by cities and societies. Energy 2050 and the UAE Water Security Strategy 2036 play a fundamental role in increasing interest in the green economy and promoting green projects. They constitute as an essential source of support for the country’s efforts and unremitting endeavors to adopt innovative green solutions that support sustainable development goals, and the sustainability of natural and environmental resources.

Francesco La Camera: The energy transition lies at the heart of the sustainable agenda

His Excellency Francesco La Camera, Director General of International Renewable Energy Agency (IRENA) stated "The energy transition plays an essential role in achieving numerous socioeconomic outcomes and therefore lies at the heart of the sustainable development agenda,” said IRENA Director-General Francesco La Camera.

His Excellency continued: “The Global Councils on SDGs are an opportunity for a broad spectrum of organisations to come together and ensure coordinated action in pursuit of the sustainable development goals. IRENA is wholly supportive of the "Councils and committed to the achievement of its aims”

Mahmoud Mohieldin: Making progress will require development goals to become a national priority

Dr. Mahmoud Mohieldin Executive Director, International Monetary Fund, United Nations Special Envoy stressed, “Today we are at critical crossroads as the COVID-19 pandemic has caused major setbacks for achieving the sustainable development goals (SDGs), which were already off-track even prior to the pandemic. The road to recovery is therefore steeper than ever. Bringing the SDGs back on track requires prioritizing them in national budgets while, at the same time, forcefully building the partnerships that are crucial to achieve them.”

Mona Al Marri: Promoting gender balance is a global priority

Her Excellency Mona Al Marri, Vice President of the UAE Gender Balance Council stated “The second term of the Global Councils on SDGs is exciting, as it supports gender balance through a nexus model, bringing together diverse leaders to address complex challenges. Advancing Gender Balance must be a local and global priority, and this model of partnership is sure to inspire meaningful and integrated global action.”

Tatyana Teplova: Harmonizing efforts to strengthen the sustainable development policies

Dr. Tatyana Teplova, Head of Division, Policy Coherence for SDGs, Senior Counsellor for Gender Equality, Justice and Inclusiveness, OECD emphasized the importance of strengthening joint efforts to achieve policy coherence for sustainable development, in a way that promotes acceleration and implementation of tasks, and creates positive impact on efforts to achieve the sustainable development goals.

Tariq Al Gurg:  Bold, brave and decisive action needed to disrupt and innovate solutions for the future of global education

His Excellency Dr Tariq Al Gurg, Chief Executive Officer and Vice-Chairman of Dubai Cares expressed “As we inch closer to the end of the UN Decade of Action, we are reminded that much remains to be done on the path to sustainable development, especially in light of the disruptions caused by COVID-19 pandemic that threatened to undo much of the progress already made. What we need today is a bold, brave, and decisive action to disrupt, innovate and collaborate in order to introduce the solutions that will shape the future of global education. We are facing a tipping point in history and an opportunity to drive a new wave of innovation and creativity. The time to take a united action is now”.

Marie Aimee Boury: Expanding cooperation and replicating successful model of global partnerships key for progress

Marie Aimee Boury, Head of Impact Based Finance at Societe Generale Corporate and Investment Banking mentioned, “As a Chair of the SDG Finance Advisory Board, I am delighted to embark on this new term and gather a panel of experts who will work together to assist in the design, implementation and, as case may be, scale-up of the initiatives launched by the other SDG Councils. We hope to expand and replicate the excellent collaboration developed in the past two years with SDG3 Council around the ‘Health In Your Hands’ initiative. More than ever, we need an impact-based approach to accelerate partnerships and investments towards the SDGs

Manal Taryam: Quality health care is a pillar of societies wellbeing

Dr. Manal Taryam, Chief Executive, Officer and Board Member of Noor Dubai Foundation, emphasized that ensuring access to quality health care is an essential pillar to enhance the well-being of societies in all aspects of daily life, including access to education.

She added “We look forward to working with the councils in driving the acceleration agenda for the SDGs. Noor Dubai Foundation has continuously supported the SDG goals through strategic partnerships and successful collaborations with state governments and NGOs with a goal to improve the economic and social wellbeing of communities they serve through fighting visual impairment. In the 75th session of UN (July 2021), the role of eye care services in accelerating action for SDGS was further highlighted in particular in achieving SDG Goal 3 (ensure healthy lives and promote well-being) & SDG 4 (ensure inclusive and quality education) given the effect of vision loss on mortality and its impact on mental health. Ensuring access to quality health care is essential to promote well-being of the society in all aspects of daily life including access to education"

Isobel Abulhoul: Strengthening educational practices essetional to achieve development

Isobel Abulhoul, Chief Executive Officer and Trustee of the Emirates Literature Foundation said, “quality education is the right of every child and much can be done to achieve this. Our focus will be on the Reading for Fun project, and the impact that reading can have on children during the school years and beyond. Within this framework, our Council will also work on two additional SDGs: reducing inequalities and partnering to achieve the goals, to develop a model that can be used as a model in other countries.”

She further added that we have an opportunity to enhance educational practices by demonstrating the profound benefits of reading regularly and outside of textbooks. For children, books provide a mirror and window into the world to understand themselves and others by nurturing their imagination and creativity.

Sonia Ben Jaafar: Enhance cooperation to develop more innovative solutions to achieve the sustainable development goals

Dr. Sonia Ben Jaafar, Chief Executive Officer of the Abdulla Al Ghurair Foundation for Education built further on the global chairs commitments and stated “It is an honor to be appointed as a Chairperson of the Global Councils on SDGs and help extend the excellent work completed in the first term. I look forward to learning from, and working with, this inspiring network of leaders. At AGFE, we partner to effectively support underserved youth in their pathways from education to elevated livelihoods. I look forward to collaborating to drive for more innovative joint solutions to achieve the SDGs. I am grateful to contribute to this Decade of Action launching as the globe gathers in Dubai for Expo2020 to explore the best of humanity”

Elizabeth Cousens: Agricultural transformations are needed at the nexus of people and planet

Dr. Elizabeth Cousens, President and Chief Executive Officer of the UN Foundation stated “Agriculture as we practice it today is driving a staggering one-third of global greenhouse gas emissions, while climate impacts, if unmitigated, will have cascading harm on global food production. Fortunately, sustainable agricultural practices, including ramped up innovation, have the potential to radically transform our food systems in ways that also create jobs, improve health, and build resilience. I am honored to chair one of the Global Councils on the SDGs, as a unique platform for bringing new attention and resources to the agricultural transformations we need at the nexus of people and planet.” 

Luc Remont: An opportunity to ensure everyone has access to safe energy resources

Luc Remont, Executive Vice-President, International Operations, Schneider Electric stated “Electricity is fundamental to how we live, and how we generate and distribute electricity is changing rapidly. Today we have the chance to ensure every person on the planet has access to secure, reliable and sustainable energy sources, thanks to renewable energy and digital technologies. And this change is going to help us address the world’s biggest challenge, which is climate change.”

He added “I believe that the Councils are among the best mechanisms we have to create a real impact for billions of people across the globe, and I’m grateful to the UAE government for the opportunity to collaborate with others to make a positive difference on issues such as clean and renewable energy for all.”

Mohammad Al Hashimy: A decade of accelerated work to accelerate the achievement of the development goals

Mohammad Al Hashimy, Deputy Group General Counsel and Company Secretary, DP World affirmed the group's belief in being an enabler of global trade, in its role in achieving sustainable development goals.

He stated “As an enabler for global trade DP World recognizes it has a role to play in achieving the SDGs. We are mindful that 2020 – 2030 is the Decade of Action, and therefore a crucial accelerator period to ensure a more sustainable and inclusive future for all. The DP World ‘Our World Our Future’ sustainability strategy is not only aligned with the SDG’s, but takes a data and target driven approach to ensure continuous progress. We will spend the next decade leveraging our business strengths, building stakeholder partnerships, and keeping society at the forefront to do our part in creating a world where no one is left behind.”

Clint Brown: Our biggest challenge is learning to grow within our means

Clint Brown, Director of Product Engineering, Esri highlighted the use of GIS is essential for creating a more sustainable future. Almost everything we’ve ever known, done, and loved took place somewhere on Planet Earth … our home. It’s where we learned to nurture, protect, and thrive.

He added “Today, our greatest challenge is to learn how to grow within our means, while sustaining what sustains us. Now, Geography matters more than ever. Using GIS, we have the power to see patterns and relationships that show us how everything and everyone are connected. The Geographic Approach, combining the work of 350,000 GIS organizations worldwide, results in billions of maps and apps.”

The Global Councils on SDGs is a unique interdisciplinary network of decision makers from governments, international organizations, academia, and the private sector coming together to share innovative practices and discuss the creative implementation of the 17 SDGs at national and global levels.

The UAE National Committee on SDGs is leading the efforts to endorse its ambitious goals to achieve the 2030 Agenda, setting the targets of the sustainable development goals in line with the UAE national agenda, set priorities for goals that should be achieved within a certain time frame, and set practical standards for determining the stages of implementation of these goals within the national development agenda.