National Council for Sustainable Development Takes Stock and Identifies Prospects for Achieving SDG in Belarus
09 September 2021
On 9 September 2021, representatives of legislative bodies, ministries and departments, regional executive committees, educational and some nongovernmental organizations, UN agencies in Belarus took part in the fifth annual meeting of the National Council for Sustainable Development in Minsk.
The meeting participants were welcomed by the National Sustainable Development Goals (SDG) Coordinator Anatoli Isachenko and the UN Resident Coordinator in Belarus Joanna Kazana-Wisniowiecki.
In her speech Joanna Kazana-Wisniowiecki noted that global development challenges including the climate crisis, the COVID-19 pandemic, social, political and economic inequalities create dangerous conditions in which development gains of the last decades can be easily wasted and destroyed forever.
The crisis and recovery is also a moment of global competition – some countries are recovering faster than others and using the crisis as an opportunity to invest in human development by increasing their own spending in areas of critical importance to the wellbeing of the people and planet.
Speaking to the meeting participants the UN Resident Coordinator in Belarus underlined that Belarus cannot stand-by or stay behind such global change and the National Council for Sustainable Development can play an important role in coordinating the cross-sectoral implementation of the National Sustainable Development Strategy and the accompanying 5- years national plans and programmes.
“Partnerships between different segments of the society are key. Creating and protecting a free and enabling environment for civil society, also working with civil society organisations, developing capacity and using their expertise and knowledge while maintaining an open and inclusive dialogue on all issues - -this can be a powerful and winning strategy for sustainable development in the country,” the UN Resident Coordinator said while emphasizing that development that is not human-centered and respectful of the rights of all stakeholders cannot be sustainable.
With the upcoming COP26 meeting in Glasgow, the SDG Council can play an important role in reviewing the progress in the area of climate action in Belarus, highlighting the contribution of Belarus to the global effort of cutting down emissions and also in making sure that climate action is a priority.
The UN Country Team in Belarus is ready to support the implementation of the national priorities in the area of sustainable development, including the the National strategy of dignified longevity, State programme on health of the population and demographic security, also programmes on SME development, National action plan on gender equality, National Programme on Green Economic Development, and others.
Regional development is essential for successful achievement of SDG in Belarus based on human capital, national partners, budget resources and public-private partnerships.
The United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) together with the National Coordinator for SDG achievement proposed the Chernobyl Investment Platform as a tool for the development of recovering districts. This new tool will help the districts to develop local economic initiatives, attract investment for economically viable project and embrace new technologies.
“In our work aimed at SDG achievement we focus on the regional development of Belarus in order not to leave anyone behind,” - said Alexandra Solovieva, UNDP Resident Representative in Belarus. – “We hope that the Chernobyl Investment Platform with its digital and financial solutions will contribute to the development of public-private partnerships and innovation in the regions of Belarus. The role of UNDP is to draw on the international expertise and practices through the long-term project cooperation of its results.”
The National Council for Sustainable Development is a consultative advisory body and a part of the institutional mechanism for the Sustainable Development Goals achievement in the Republic of Belarus.