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DSG/SM/1685
2 February 2022

Unprecedented Multilateral Mobilization Critical to Overcoming Impacts of Pandemic, Deputy Secretary-General Tells Economic and Social Council Partnership Forum

Following is the text of UN Deputy Secretary-General Amina Mohammed’s video message to the Economic and Social Council Partnership Forum on “Building back better from the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) while advancing the full implementation of the 2030 Agenda”, held virtually, today:

Excellencies, colleagues, ladies and gentlemen, I am pleased to address today’s opening of the 2022 Partnership Forum of the Economic and Social Council.

Two years into the global pandemic, human suffering has been unprecedented with the unfolding of continuous losses of all kinds.  COVID-19 has been adding complexity to what was already a grim landscape in our efforts to achieve the Sustainable Development Goals.

The pandemic has been acting as an accelerator of inequality between and within countries, pushing some 100 million more people into poverty and reversing progress on youth education and gender equality.  At the same time, the climate crisis is becoming more and more urgent.  Climate shocks forced 30 million people to flee their homes in 2020.

Insufficient climate commitments mean we are headed for an almost 14 per cent increase in global emissions over the current decade when what we need is a 45 per cent reduction.  We must use this year to turn things around.

Excellencies, the concept of global partnership was birthed in times of crises.  It is based on the realization that no one country or sector can address global challenges alone.

We need unprecedented multilateral and multi-stakeholder mobilization — anchored in the 17 Sustainable Development Goals — to overcome the impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic and accelerate the critical socioeconomic transitions that will make the Goals a reality.

In Our Common Agenda, the Secretary-General has called for boosting partnerships through stronger, more systemic engagement of all actors.  That means creating greater space and genuine engagement for young people, civil society, business, local authorities and others to better inform our work at the United Nations and to better support the advancement of our agreed intergovernmental frameworks.

Such engagement efforts can help build trust and cohesion, tap the potential of all development actors and generate synergistic impacts for the benefit of all, in particular the most vulnerable and marginalized countries and peoples.

Using the SDGs [Sustainable Development Goals] as a holistic framework, the Economic and Social Council Partnership Forum can help drive us all forward towards a better recovery and a surge in Sustainable Development Goal progress during the remainder of the Decade of Action.  I wish you a productive meeting.

For information media. Not an official record.