SDG Summit - Photo:UN Photo/Kim Haughton
UN Photo/Kim Haughton

UNGA: Sustainable Development Goals Summit

Statement by President of ECOSOC Ambassador Mona Juul at the Opening of the SDG Summit UN High-level Political Forum for Sustainable Development, 24 September 2019.

| President of ECOSOC

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Mr. President of the General Assembly, Mr. Secretary-General, Heads of State and Government, Excellencies, Distinguished Delegates, Ladies and Gentlemen,  

We are here to express our resolve to achieve the better and fairer world promised in the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development. 

Since 2016, the ECOSOC High Level Political Forum (HLPF) has met annually to review progress. The message has been clear: we need to greatly accelerate our efforts and aim much higher.

The 2019 Forum committed to an “Inclusion Imperative”. People are still being left behind. Our policies and actions are not yet yielding the deep changes needed to combat exclusion and poverty in all its forms.

Inequality remains unacceptably high in, and between countries. 

The Youth Climate Summit and yesterday’s Climate Summit moved us all. They outlined considerable challenges ahead and called for more ambitious and urgent action.

Education still excludes many, and at the same time, we are facing a “learning crisis” of children receiving schooling, without learning.

We, as owners of the 2030 Agenda, must move into a higher gear to promote sustained and inclusive economic growth and ensure productive employment and decent work for all.

Just and participatory transformation needs: peace, justice and, transparent and accountable institutions.   

An efficient UN, fit for purpose, is critical for it to make a real difference in the lives of people.


We must also remember to highlight the many positive advances. For example, national presentations (VNRs) have shown that governments are proactively implementing the 2030 Agenda. As are multiple businesses and civil society organizations. 

That is why this Summit can, and should, rally us to action:

We should enter into new, inclusive and innovative partnerships, international collaboration and boost civil society engagement.

We need to bridge the gap in investments towards the SDGs. With the Addis Ababa Action Agenda on Financing for Development as our compass.

We need to innovate and harness advances in science and technology towards the common good.

And we must heed the calls of our youth. Let us heed their call for inheriting a sustainable planet.

I call upon everyone today to step up efforts for “people, planet and prosperity”. 

Thank you.