Think 20 Summit - Antalya Global Policy Dialogue Conference

Nov 14, 2015

Statement by
Kamal Malhotra
United Nations Resident Coordinator, Turkey
Resident Representative, UNDP Turkey


Distinguished colleagues and friends,

On behalf of the UN allow me to express sincerest and deepest condolences to the people and Republic of France and especially the families of those who died for the horrific terrorist attacks in Paris yesterday.
It is a pleasure for me to be here with you today on behalf of UNDP to launch the T20 Summit entitled Antalya Global Policy Dialogue Conference.

Ladies and Gentlemen,

The world witnessed agreement on the 2030 Sustainable Development Agenda at the UN in New York in September at the largest gathering of world leaders in history. Meanwhile, Turkey’s G20 Presidency in 2015 introduced the 3 I’s namely inclusiveness, implementation and investment as its main pillars. Furthermore, Turkey has explicitly stated that the newly announced Sustainable Development Goals are critical benchmarks for the G20. In this context, concrete actions have been taken during the Turkish Presidency including on reducing costs of remittances, strengthening developing country and Low Income Developing Country tax assessment and collection capacities, expanding energy access and making long-term financing available, especially for SMEs. Moreover, actions were taken to create quality jobs, an inclusive labour market and a framework for inclusive business.

During the Turkish G20 presidency, development became a cross-cutting theme with various streams, including investment, infrastructure, employment, energy access, food security and nutrition, tax, financial inclusion, remittances, inclusive business, trade and anti-corruption.  

Many UN agencies played important roles and made significant inputs. For instance, the implementation plan of the G20 Food Security and Nutrition Framework and further contributions to the G20 Action Plan on Food Security and Sustainable Food Systems was successfully shepherded by the FAO. Domestic resource mobilization through a G20 Call to Action for Strengthening Tax Capacity in Developing Countries, including the work on tax incentives for investment in Low Income Countries and further support for the inclusion of developing countries in the G20 international tax reform agenda has been made possible partly by the work of UN-DESA.

The contributions of both UNDP and the World Bank Group have led to the adoption of a G20 Framework on Inclusive Business which seeks to promote new opportunities for low-income communities and people to participate in and contribute actively to global markets.    

Distinguished Guests,

The Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) are quite different from the Millenium Development Goals (MDGs) not only due to their larger number but most critically, because of their much greater ambition and universality. The 17 Sustainable Development Goals include those on inclusive growth and most importantly, for the first time, on governance issues necessary for peaceful and inclusive societies. Furthermore, they prioritize climate change and the way our societies produce and consume goods and services. The G20’s programme of work has also evolved to encompass many of the issues highlighted in the SDGs.

Respecting and implementing the principles of the 2030 Agenda will be critical to agreeing the way forward. Countries have high expectations regarding the support that they can receive from the UN development system in the implementation of the 2030 Agenda.

In this context, the UN Development Group has developed a common approach on implementation which is called MAPS (i.e. Mainstreaming, Acceleration, and Policy Support).

Regarding mainstreaming, the proposed approach gives significant support to governments to incorporate the SDG agenda in national and local strategies, plans, and budgets. More specifically, mapping what countries are already doing, and where new areas of emphasis and direction are needed for SDG achievement will be a priority.

With respect to acceleration, the experience with the MDGs can help define the obstacles and blockages on the way to making progress on goals and targets, and identify actions necessary to simultaneously speed up progress on multiple targets.

Policy support can be provided by using the accumulated knowledge in the rich repository of past experiences of the UN system.

In sum, MAPS can be applied according to the particular development context and challenges faced by each country, including those that are more developed, in transition or in crisis. Across its three components, partnerships should be enhanced, data quality should be improved and accountability should be deepened.

Continuing advocacy will also be critical to the success of the 2030 Sustainable Development Agenda. Building on the UN Millennium Campaign, a dynamic campaign for the achievement of the Sustainable Development Goals in every country will be launched to bring stakeholders together to support implementation, including through citizen-driven processes to track progress. We believe that this approach will be a useful guide for all stakeholders pursuing sustainable development in different development contexts.

Ladies and Gentlemen,

The 2030 Sustainable Development Agenda adopted by 193 countries applies to all of them, regardless of their level of development. It has laid out a powerful vision for the world we want to see by 2030 and Member States have agreed that transformational change is needed in countries at all income levels.

To enable this, it is important that they receive the full attention of the UN, and all other international and regional organizations and groupings, including the G20, which should play its part. Only collaboration and coordination across nations and organizations will ensure that development happens everywhere and is not something which happens to someone else somewhere else.

Allow me to end by thanking Prof. Güven Sak and TEPAV, as the T20 Turkey lead for co-hosting this event with UNDP and for bringing together new and innovative thinking and ideas through such a distinguished group of participants. I believe that this is an important Thinkers Summit and am confident that it will produce concrete and innovative recommendations and outcomes for the future sustainable growth of our planet.

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