ADA Newsletter- June-July 2018
Dear ADA members and Friends,
We are glad to share ADA’s newsletter for the months of June – July 2018, together. The past two months have been very hectic for the CSOs all over the world, especially those who keep keen interests in Sustainable Development Goals and its monitoring and review mechanism. The CSOs along with all the state actors have been preparing for the High-Level Political Forum for almost a year by reviewing their own national-level monitoring mechanism for the SDGs.
Now, as the CSOs have been advocating for a more intensified engagement in the whole process, the HLPF is just one mark, and there are needs to do the training, capacity strengthening and advocacy at the sub-regional and national levels and keeping that in mind, many activities have already planned not only by the UN ESCAP (in Asia) but by the CSOs as well in the coming months.
So let’s wait to hear more in this space for all the upcoming activities in the region.
Please feel free to give your suggestions on how to improve our communication with you on firstname.lastname@example.org
Table of Contents
ADA and Members Activities
ADA National Meeting on SDGs in Singapore: Challenges and Implications for Civil Society in Asia
Vienna +25 - Building Trust: Making Human Rights a Reality for All
MGoS HLPF Pre-meeting 2018- UN Church Centre- 8th July 2018.
High-Level political Forum – New York (9-18 July 2018)
ADA Side Event
Unanswered Questions: How Civil Society’s Contributions to Sustainable Development are Undermined at the HLPF by Lyndal Rowlands, Advocacy & Networks Officer, CIVICUS
Civil Society Report
For your Action
GALA 6 – August 23-30, Colombo.
Call for applications to attend subregional meetings on the 2030 Agenda – Preparation for the 2019 Asia-Pacific Forum for Sustainable Development
ADA organized a national workshop on #SDG in Singapore on June 10, 2018. The workshop was conducted by ADAs Advisor Anselmo Lee. Mr.Lee shared the SDG mechanism with local CSOs and members of the political party at Bras Basah Complex in Singapore. The meeting allowed participants to clarify what was involved in observing the work of the government and how each of the goals of the SDG is interlinked and indivisible. Datuk Dr Dennison Jayasooria shared Malaysia’s experience in VNR to give Singaporean participants an idea of the process and help them familiarize themselves with the preparation work involved.
Singapore is one of 5 Asian governments at the UN HLPF VNR on SDGs at UN in New York on 16-18 July 2018 - Bhutan, Sri Lanka, Laos, and Vietnam.
The ADA and the partners also prepared the statement on DPRK-US Summit (Singapore, 12 June 2018). The statement can be viewed here
2018 marks the 25th anniversary of the World Conference on Human Rights which took place between 14 and 25 June 1993 and gathered more than 10,000 representatives of governments, the United Nations and the international civil society. The Vienna Declaration and Programme of Action (VDPA) adopted at the World Conference together are considered a landmark document for the promotion and protection of human rights, creating inter alia the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights and his office (OHCHR).
On this occasion, the Austrian Federal Ministry for Europe, Integration and Foreign Affairs together with the Office of the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights, the City of Vienna, and the Ludwig Boltzmann Institute of Human Rights organized a high-level expert conference on 22 and 23 May 2018 in Vienna. Federal Minister Dr. Karin Kneissl together with the High Commissioner for Human Rights Zeid Ra’ad Al Hussein opened the event.
The programme and the concept note are available here.
The conference gathered independent human rights experts from civil society, academia and the private sector, youth, human rights defenders, representatives of the UN, regional/sub-regional/national/local human rights institutions as well as government representatives. Leading experts from all world regions were invited to discuss global trends such as digitalization, demographic changes, urbanization and climate change and their impact on human rights. The discussions at an expert level were conducted in two working groups focusing on the following topics:
Full report here
Full text of the Vienna Declaration and Programme of Action VDPA of 1993
The event was attended by ADA and few partners in Vienna.
The 2018 meeting of the High-level Political Forum on Sustainable Development (HLPF) opened on Monday, 9 July 2018, at UN Headquarters in New York. In the morning, the opening session focused on progress in achieving the 2030 Agenda and the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). A session on implementing the 2030 Agenda for resilient societies followed, with sub-sessions on: reviewing progress in achieving the SDGs; and better data for sustainable development. In the afternoon, a review of SDG 6 (clean water and sanitation) took place.
This session was chaired by Marie Chatardová, Permanent Representative of the Czech Republic and President, UN Economic and Social Council (ECOSOC). In her opening remarks, Chatardová invited participants to adopt the provisional agenda (E/HLPF/2018/1). She said the participation of over 80 ministers and vice ministers and 2500 non-state actors in the HLPF this year exemplifies the rallying power of the SDGs.
Liu Zhenmin, UN Under-Secretary-General of Economic and Social Affairs, presented the UN Secretary-General’s SDG progress report. He noted a decline in numbers living in extreme poverty, but flagged several challenges, including: climate change and conflict zones; inadequate social protection; the rise of hunger; gender inequality; pressures on land, forests, and livelihoods; an overall decrease in global official development assistance (ODA); and underfunding of data collection for SDGs in developing countries.
Keynote speaker Jeffrey Sachs, Columbia University, said greed and the vested interests of coal, oil and gas companies are the biggest obstacle to the achievement of the SDGs. He called out the global food industry’s unsustainable supply chains and unhealthy products. Citing sustainable development and happiness rankings, he noted that sustainable development promotes wellbeing and happiness, while tax cuts for the rich undermine infrastructure, education and health services. He called on rich countries and individuals to address the $200 billion financing gap to achieve the SDGs, by: increasing ODA; using 1% of the wealth of the world’s 2208 billionaires to ensure education for every child and universal health care access; closing down off-shore tax regimes; taxing the five big technology monopoly companies given their use of public data; taxing financial transactions; establishing a global carbon tax; and adopting measures to address tax evasion.
Keynote speaker María Soledad Cisternas Reyes, the UN Secretary-General’s Special Envoy on Disability and Accessibility, outlined ways to make the 2030 Agenda more inclusive, including by increasing access to technology to ensure human rights and strengthen democracy. She underlined the central role that corporations can play by investing in the SDGs.
Keynote speaker Alex Steffen, Worldchanging.com, said the existing tension between sustainable and unsustainable economies can be resolved by technology and human innovation. He stressed the importance of speed in implementing the 2030 Agenda.
The HLPF closed Wednesday, 18 July 2018, at UN Headquarters in New York. The HLPF examined the implementation of five goals in detail: SDG 6 (water and sanitation); SDG 7 (energy); SDG 11 (sustainable cities); SDG 12 (sustainable production and consumption); SDG 15 (terrestrial ecosystems), and SDG 17 (partnerships for the goals). Under the theme, ‘Transformation towards sustainable and resilient societies,’ 46 countries presented their Voluntary National Reviews (VNRs) and a Ministerial Declaration was adopted.
To read all the reports from 9-18 July, please click this link
CSOs Participation in the VNR Process and SDG Follow up Mechanism
13 July 2018, UNDP Office, New York
The Asia Development Alliance (ADA), the UNDP Bangkok Regional Hub, the International Platform for National NGOs (IFP), the UNECE Regional Civil Society Engagement Mechanism and the UNECLAC civil society engagement mechanism jointly organized a side event on 13 July 2018 at the UNDP headquarters, during the 2018 HLPF.
The side event contributed to share experiences of government-CSO engagement across regions and understand the role of the United Nations to encourage multi-stakeholder partnerships and ensure that the transformative promise of the SDGs to “Leave No One Behind’ is delivered. It also focused on challenges and opportunities related to CSO-government engagement based on previous CSO lessons learned during VNR reporting and other follow-up mechanisms in 2016 , 2017 and 2018.
Full Report here
Some important Side Events of ADA and Partners interests – here
ADA is going to organize its annual regional training program GALA , in Colombo from August 23-30.
GALAA 2018 is expected to help participants to learn about nexus approach titled ‘transformative and integral approach to SDGs’ that is conflict-sensitive, gender-sensitive, climate-sensitive and human rights-based approach to SDGs by linking SDG 5, 13, 16, and 17.
About 30 participants from ADA members and partner organizations are to be invited including some GALAA alumni who need follow-up and advanced training. Full information here
ESCAP will organize a series of five meetings to prepare for the 6th Asia-Pacific Forum on Sustainable Development and to advance implementation of the SDGs, during September 2018.
These meetings will facilitate dialogue among government officials, civil society, experts and other stakeholders on the theme of the 6th APFSD “Empowering people and ensuring inclusiveness and equality”. The meetings will be organized by organized by ESCAP’s subregional offices in East and North-East Asia (ENEA), South and South West Asia (SSWA), North and Central Asia (SONCA) and the Pacific (EPO), in coordination with the UN Resident Coordinator and the wider UN system
Targeted participants, by invitation, are:
- Experts from government agencies responsible for national coordination of SDGs
- Representatives of non-government and private sector organizations
- Regional and sub-regional organizations
- Other stakeholders involved in SDG implementation at national, regional and global levels
The schedule of the meetings is as follows:
|North and Central Asia Forum on Implementation of the Sustainable Development Goals||3-4 September 2018||Tbilisi, Georgia|
|North-East Asian Multi-stakeholder Forum on Sustainable Development Goals||5-6 September 2018||Ulaanbaatar, Mongolia|
|South East Asia Forum on Implementation of the|
Sustainable Development Goals
|11-12 September 2018||Bangkok, Thailand|
|South and South West Asia Forum on Implementation of the|
Sustainable Development Goals
|17-18 September 2018||New Delhi, India|
|Pacific Forum on Implementation of the Sustainable Development Goals||24-25 September 2018||Nadi, Fiji|
|Jan. 22-24||Busan, South Korea||Busan Democracy Forum (BuDF) on SDG 16+, Korea|
|Jan. 24||Busan, South Korea||ADA Annual Members’ Meeting|
|Feb.|| || |
|March.||Bonn, Germany||Global Festival of Ideas (GFI) 2, many|
|March 25-27||Bangkok||Asia Pacific People’s Forum on Sustainable Development|
|March 28-30||Bangkok||UNESCAP Asia Pacific Forum on Sustainable Development (APFSD)|
|April 26-27||Vientiane||National CSO consultation on the VNR Process|
|April 26||Colombo||National CSO consultation on Voluntary people’s Review|
|May -6||Manila||ADB Annual Meeting-51|
|July 9-18||New York,||HLPF-6 (SDG 6,7,11,12,15 and 17)|
|July 16-18||New York||HLPF Voluntary National Review (VNR)-3|
Laos, Singapore, Vietnam, Bhutan, Sri Lanka
|August 6-7||Buenos Aires||C 20|
|Aug. 23-30||Colombo||GALA Training on Linking Human Rights with Development|
|Sept.||New York||UN General Assembly-7|
|Sept. 25|| ||3rd Anniversary of UN SDGs Adoption|
|3-4 September||Tbilisi, Georgia||North and Central Asia Forum on Implementation of the Sustainable Development Goals|
|5-6 September||Ulaanbaatar, Mongolia||North-East Asian Multi-stakeholder Forum on Sustainable Development Goals|
|11-12 September||Bangkok, Thailand||South East Asia Forum on Implementation of the|
Sustainable Development Goals
|17-18 September||New Delhi, India||South and South West Asia Forum on Implementation of the|
Sustainable Development Goals
|24-25 September||Nadi, Fiji||Pacific Forum on Implementation of the Sustainable Development Goals|
|Nov.||Singapore||ASEAN, ASEAN+ and East Asia Summit|
|Dec. 3-14||Poland||UNFCCC COP-24|
|Nov. 30 – Dec.1||Buenos Aires, Argentina||G20 Summit|
|Dec.|| ||International Civil Society Week (ICSW), CIVICUS|
- ADA's official website has been renewed. All the information related to the implementation of SDGs in Asia and actions conducted by Asian CSOs will be accumulated on this website. Please visit www.ada2030.org
- ADA's Facebook page has been activated! The page will channel useful information among civil society actors in Asia. Feel free to tag @Asia Development Alliance in future collaboration. The page is accessible with this web address: https://www.facebook.com/ada2030/