Gov’t reiterates call for adoption of vulnerability index

at UN Forum on SDGs

The government has reiterated its call for advanced economies (developed countries) to deliver on their commitments relating to the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) 2030 agenda, especially the adoption of a vulnerability index for the most vulnerable countries.

This call was made by Senior Minister in the Office of the President with Responsibility for Finance, Dr. Ashni Singh at the High-Level Political Forum on Sustainable Development in New York on Monday.

Senior Minister in the Office of the President with Responsibility for Finance, Dr. Ashni Singh

Dr. Singh reminded that in 1970, world leaders agreed to develop countries delivering official development assistance of no less than 0.7 per cent of the gross national product by 1975.

However, Minister Singh explained that some 50 years later, five advanced economies have achieved the target.

“The others have mostly gone quiet, while the developing world has been embarrassed into minimising mention of this missed target. We use this opportunity to repeat our previous calls to this, another longstanding undelivered commitment to be honoured,” the senior minister asserted.

Dr. Singh made mention of the multi-dimensional vulnerability index that needs to be adopted, even as Guyana endorses measures proposed under the Bridgetown initiatives to support the most vulnerable countries.

He said those commitments alone will not be enough to achieve the SDGs 2030 in many countries, especially the poor and vulnerable. And as such, they were called to honour these commitments.

“Mr president no less is required if we are to have a remote chance of achieving the lofty but necessary goals we set ourselves in agenda 2030.”

Dr. Singh added that significant progress has been made in achieving the 2030 SDGs. However, some countries are still struggling to achieve these goals due to circumstances beyond their control.

These include the recent COVID-19 pandemic, geo-political tensions, the disruption to the global supply chain, and inflationary pressures that have not been experienced in over two decades, driven by rising energy and food prices.

Those in attendance were also informed of President, Dr. Mohamed Irfaan Ali’s One Guyana philosophy that seeks to ensure every Guyanese benefits from Guyana’s newfound wealth. It also has grounded recognition of Guyana’s role in regional and global outcomes.

“Examples include Guyana’s leadership on the Caribbean community’s goal of improving food security, by reducing the region’s food import bill by 25 per cent by 2025 as well as our Low Carbon Development Strategy 2030, which harnesses Guyana’s forest in the global fight against climate change,” Minister Singh explained.

The minister reiterated that Guyana remains firmly committed to agenda 2030 and the government will continue to work aggressively to advance the nation’s progress towards the SDGs.

“Our second voluntary national review…documents the progress we’ve made, the challenges we’ve faced, and the road ahead,” Dr. Singh further highlighted.

At the forum, discussions will focus on the effective and inclusive recovery measures to address the impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic on the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) and explore actionable policy guidance for the full implementation of the 2030 Agenda and the SDGs at all levels, among other things.

The session  is themed, “Accelerating the recovery from the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) and the full implementation of the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development at all levels.”