Economic Commission for Africa holds dialogue on SDGs

The Economic Commission of Africa (ECA) is set to hold a High Level Policy Dialogue on Development Planning in Africa in collaboration with Nigeria’s Budget and National Planning Ministry.

The dialogue would hold from June 28 to 30 in Abuja.

The theme of the dialogue is: “Mainstreaming the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) into National Development Plans”.

The dialogue will provide an opportunity for African planners and chief executives of planning bodies to discuss and identify approaches, tools and guidelines that can be applied by member States to mainstream SDGs into national development planning processes.

The dialogue also offers participants a forum to share knowledge and experiences in conceptualising, aligning and measuring SDGs implementation progress with due regards to national development priorities and decision-making processes.

Delegates would also share knowledge on the policy implications of domesticating SDGs to ensure national ownerships of the mainstreaming process.

Mr Sylvain Boko, the Head, Development Planning and Statistics, Capacity Development Division said “localising” the SDGs and making them work for everyone is important as it would improve the lives of people on the continent in concrete ways.

At the end of the high level dialogue, we expect that participants will be better informed. They will go back home sharing a common understanding of approaches and tools that can be adopted by member States to mainstream the SDGs into national development planning processes,” he said.

He recalled that when global leaders adopted the agenda, they said they were determined to take bold and transformative steps which were urgently needed to shift the world onto a sustainable and resilient path.

Boko also said that the dialogue was one way of furthering that promise on the continent so no-one would be left behind.

The organisers  hope that participants will be better equipped to conceptualise, formulate, implement, monitor, evaluate and report on national development plans that integrate the SDGs.

It is also hoped that they will have a better understanding of the challenges and opportunities of implementing national development plans aligned to the SDGs.

The Agenda 2030, adopted by United Nations member States in September 2015, is a plan of action for people, planet and prosperity, seeking to eradicate poverty in all its forms and dimensions.

This includes extreme poverty, through 17 Sustainable Development Goals, and 169 targets in the historic agreement.

The goals cover a broad range of sustainable development issues, including ending poverty and hunger, improving health and education, making cities more sustainable, combating climate change, and protecting oceans and forests.

World leaders want the goals to stimulate action over the next 15 years in these critical areas for humanity and the planet.

In Africa, the SDGs are being implemented concurrently and in an integrated manner with Agenda 2063, Africa’s 50-year strategic framework.

The strategic framework is for socio-economic transformation which seeks to accelerate the implementation of past and existing continental initiatives for growth and sustainable development.

More than a year after the adoption of the SDGs, African countries are at various stages in the domestication process.

The dialogue is part of the ECA’s High Level Leadership Policy Dialogues of African Planners and Chief Executives of planning bodies which recognises the need to promote coordination and coherence among African planners.