The 2030 Agenda aims to lift 800 million people out of poverty in 800 weeks -- a formidable task, but one that I am convinced is achievable.
I am excited by the new Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). They are bold. They are inclusive. And -- above all -- they provide the international community with a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to end poverty, chartering a more prosperous, inclusive, and sustainable future for us all.
The Millennium Development Goals, the predecessors of the SDGs, demonstrated the power of global goals to inspire action and mobilise much-needed resources. This included our ability to reach record levels of Official Development Assistance (ODA) from Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) members, which totalled US$135 billion last year.
With the SDGs, the international community is now the custodian of a much more sophisticated framework. This new framework recognises the need to address the economic, social, and environmental dimensions of development. The new goals are also universal, and should be embraced by countries at all levels of development -- including OECD countries. Never before has it been so clear that we all share common risks, threats, hopes, and ambitions.
It is a multi-faceted framework with 17 goals and 169 associated implementation targets. But for the OECD unpacking, developing, and monitoring solutions to complex challenges -- such as achieving inclusive and green growth -- is the only way forward. This is, indeed, what our organization does on a daily basis. Our aim is not to look for simple solutions, but rather to design sound policy approaches that are coherent across sectors, take into account the complexity and the interconnectedness of the issues, and are sustainable in the long-term. As part of its core business, the OECD has the data experience, and evidence of what policies have delivered good development results, and under which conditions.
The success of the 2030 Agenda will depend on countries being able to radically change the way they work for development. Some nations have begun thinking about how to do this; some already have an overarching sustainable development strategy in place; others are developing systems to address the SDGs as a government-wide agenda. The OECD will support the United Nations and all its member states in implementing and ensuring the success of the new agenda by bringing together its existing knowledge and experience
Angel Gurria, Secretary General of the OECD, During Press Conference at OECD Headquarters in Paris, France. [Photo Courtesy of Julien Daniel, OECD].
Consolidating effective partnerships will be fundamental to this effort. The OECD is already working with many different partners -- including governments, the private sector, and civil society -- to address global challenges in areas such as taxes, investment, illicit financial flows, green growth, health, education, gender equality, and conflict and stabilization. Our 2015 Development Cooperation Report: Making Partnerships Effective Coalitions for Action illustrates how successful partnerships drive development efforts. It examines what has and has not worked with development partnerships in the past to draw out ten principles for driving effective action and concrete results moving forward. At the same time, it also cautions that partnering effectively around the SDGs does not necessarily mean creating a whole new set of initiatives. Rather, existing ones should be exploited fully to avoid fragmentation and duplication.
The OECD’s motto is “Better Policies for Better Lives.” I call on governments and citizens around the globe to push the boundaries to go even further and to look at how -- hand-in-hand -- we can deliver better partnerships for better lives and achieve the 2030 Agenda. A formidable task, indeed, but an achievable one if we all work together.
About the Author: Angel Gurría serves as the Secretary-General of the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD). He formerly served as Mexico’s Minister of Foreign Affairs (1994–1997) and as Minister of Finance and Public Credit (1998–2000).
For more information:
- Learn more about the next set of Global Goals and the upcoming UN Sustainable Development Summit.
- See how world leaders will shape Global Goals for humanity's future at UNGA70.
- Find out why you should care about the UN General Assembly this year.
- Get the news and developments from the #SDG Summit and the #GlobalGoals by following OECD officials @USOECD and @A_Gurria on Twitter.