Sri Lanka called on HLPF on SDG for multi-stakeholder partnerships to preserve development gains and to ‘build forward’ post-COVID-19.


Sri Lanka’s Permanent Representative to the UN Economic and Social Commission for the Asia and the Pacific (UNESCAP), Ambassador Samantha K. Jayasuriya, as the Chair of the 7th Asia Pacific Forum on Sustainable Development (APFSD), called the High Level Political forum (HLPF) on Sustainable Development, for multi Stakeholder partnership in post COOVID 19, to preserve the development gains and build forward. She made these remarks presenting the ‘outcomes of the regional economic commissions’, to the HLPF, which is being conducted as a virtual meeting at the UN in New York, under the auspicious of the Economic and Social Council (ECOSOC), focusing on the theme “Accelerated action and transformative pathways: realizing the decade of action and delivery for sustainable development “.

Reiterating the commitments expressed by the member States and major stakeholders at the 7th APFSD towards achieving SDGs, and building back better after the COVID 19 crisis, she said that, it would require a change in mindsets and a search for new and transformative ways of working, which prioritizes sustainability, places humans at center, and leaves no one behind. The 7th APFSD session held at UNESCAP in Bangkok-Thailand on 20 May 2020, as a virtual session for the first time in its history, also acknowledged the APFSD as a key regional space for member States to share the lessons learnt and to discuss their own Voluntary National Reviews (VNRs), identify and exchange good practices, bridge concerted efforts of all stakeholders in the region as well as to prepare for their reviews at the HLPF.

Ambassador Jayasuriya, also appreciated that the UNESCAP, through the APFSD, facilitated interagency cooperation presenting the system-wide results of the United Nations’ efforts at the regional level, in support of the 2030 Agenda. She also informed HLPF that during the 7th APFSD, the UNESCAP launched the ‘SDG Partnership report’, with the Asian Development Bank and the United Nations Development Programme, which showed that the Asia & Pacific Region has made ‘good progress in achieving SDG 4 on education and SDG 7 on clean and sustainable energy’.

The HLPF annual meeting in New York is the core United Nations platform for follow-up and review of the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development and its 17 Sustainable Development Goals. The Session on ‘Messages from the Regions’ which provides space for the regions to share progress and outcomes, was chaired by H.E Ambassador Omar Hilale, of Morocco, Vice President of ECOSOC, and was moderated by the Ms. Vera Songwe, Executive Secretary of the Economic Commission for Africa as the Coordinator of the Regional Commissions. Ambassador Jayasuriya was assisted by Ms. Katinka Weinberger and Mr. Riccardo Mesiano from Environment and Development Policy Section of the UNESCAP, and Ms. Saritha Ranathunga, Second Secretary of the Mission, during the virtual meeting.

Permanent Mission of Sri Lanka to UNESCAP
16 July 2020