Credit Innovation has a Key Role in Bangladesh’s Climate Change Adaptation

Expected climate change makes improving agricultural practices even more important than many already suggest, according to a new study of Bangladesh, considered one of the most at-risk nations from rising temperatures. Moreover, climate vagaries may mean that the popular prescription of diversifying farming products will not provide the clear economic benefit that is currently anticipated. […]

Kitchen Gardens are Victory Gardens in Boosting Nutrition and Incomes in Western Kenya

Busia County in western Kenya is home to an array of indigenous vegetables. But for decades there has been a shift in popular taste leading to leading to little interest in what is indigenously grown. This relegated the vegetables to the periphery with most farmers cultivating kale and cabbages among other more exotic varieties. However, […]

Initiatives Revive Palestinian Heritage Boosting Economy and ‘Homeland’

Deep into the subtly monochrome landscape of the southern West Bank, Abu Ismaeel’s tent stands out amongst bare rolling hills that stretch into the horizon. A lonely gate, with no fence around it, signals the official entrance to two large tents in the Rashayda Desert. Abu Ismaeel never dreamed that one day groups of foreign […]

The Power of the Pen

“How would you like it if you were just expressing your feelings and someone just put you in jail?” This is how an eight-year-old American schoolchild asked King Salman of Saudi Arabia not to flog imprisoned blogger Raif Badawi. This was one of millions of messages sent on behalf of Raif during the 2014 Write […]

Malnutrition a Silent Emergency in Papua New Guinea

High up in the mountainous interior of Papua New Guinea (PNG), the most populous Pacific Island state of 7.3 million people, rural lives are marked by strenuous work toiling land in rugged terrain with low access to basic services. While more than 80 per cent of people are engaged in subsistence agriculture and village food […]

Climate Smart Coffee and Banana Set to Boost East African Farmers’ Income

Ugandan farmers are increasingly inter-planting coffee, the country’s primary export, and banana, a staple food, as a way of coping with the effects of climate change. In densely populated Elgon and Rwenzori Mountains, the two crops have been planted together on smallholder farms despite recommendations under the colonial agricultural extension system to separate these in […]

UN Discovery of Secret Detention Centre Revives Nightmares

Details of a secret detention center, where serious human rights abuses took place, deep inside the sprawling Tricomalee Naval base in the east of Sri Lanka are slowly emerging. The site is nothing new to those who were held there. In June this year the South Africa-based International Truth and Justice Project, Sri Lanka (ITJPSL) […]

UN Discovery of secret detention centre, reopens all nightmares

Details of a secret detention center, where serious human rights abuses took place, deep inside the sprawling Tricomalee Naval base in the east of Sri Lanka are slowly emerging. The site is nothing new to those who were held there. In June this year the South Africa-based International Truth and Justice Project, Sri Lanka (ITJPSL) […]

UN’s Post-2015 Development Agenda Will “Leave No One Behind”

By Valentina Ieri

The United Nations is convinced the 17 Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), adopted by world leaders last September, can be successfully implemented only with the inclusion of all segments of society, including governments, civil society organisations (CSOs), women, youth, indigenous people and the private sector.

David Le Blanc, Senior Sustainable Development Officer at the U.N. Department for Social and Economic Affairs (UN/DESA) pointed out that the word “inclusive” is mentioned in five out of the 17 SDGs targets, and 22 times overall in the agenda.

Speaking during a UN panel discussion on ‘Exploring Inclusiveness in the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development’, on December 14, Le Blanc added: “It means reaching the “furthest behind first […] including all sections of the society as it would be very hard to defend a society where some do not have access to basic necessity, such as shelter, health services, income, discrimination of women, or lack of opportunities.”

Setting the tone at the opening of the U.N. Summit for the 2030 Development Agenda last September, the Secretary General, Ban Ki-moon, said SDGs will leave “no one behind”:

“The new agenda is a promise by leaders to all people everywhere. It is a universal, integrated and transformative vision for a better world…for people, to end poverty in all its forms.”

The panel discussion, organised by the Mission of South Korea, in collaboration with the U.N. Conference on Trade and Development (UNCTAD) and the International Chamber of Commerce (ICC), focused specifically on the concept of inclusiveness.

Ambassador Choong-hee Hahn, Deputy Permanent Representative of the Republic of Korea and chairman of the 47th session of the U.N. Commission on International Trade Law (UNCITRAL), said : “Three key words relate to inclusiveness: people, justice and dignity. Dignity should be our ultimate goal for achieving inclusiveness, as people need to be aware of their rights and privileges, in order to change current inequalities and injustice,” socially, economically and politically.

Therefore, – continued Ambassador Hahn – in order to create a safe, and sustainable framework for economic and human development, the world needs to achieve global citizenship through education, gender equality and women empowerment.

Lakshmi Puri, U.N. Assistant Secretary-General for Intergovernmental Support and Strategic Partnerships, and Deputy Executive Director of UN Women said without half of humanity realising their rights, sustainable development will not be achieved.

‘Therefore inclusiveness is about policies implementation, but also about driving a global movement for a structural transformation for people at the citizenship level,” added Puri.

But how can “inclusiveness” be implemented in real terms?

Only through a well-designed joint action between the private sector, good governance, and the rule of law.

“Examples of inclusive business” – said Ambassador Hahn – “are long term contracts between companies and small-medium manufacturing companies in developing countries. In this way, the supply and the demand can be sustainable.”

“Inclusive entrepreneurship” – continued the Korean Ambassador- “Is about training and teaching students of the developing countries so that they can open a business in a sustainable way,” along with inclusive knowledge-sharing, through communication technologies in developing economies.

The innovative aspect of inclusive business is that the role of the private and public sector in boosting sustainable development must not be conceived purely in terms of income growth.

Taffere Tesfachew, Director, Division for Africa, Least Developed Countries and Special Programmes at UNCTAD, said: “Eradicating poverty by 2030, means eradication to zero, everywhere. This means a 4-5 times increase gross national income (GNI) per capita, that is inclusive, if we are going to achieve it. But first, we must recognise that [previous] growth and development strategies were not inclusive.”

He said about 450,000 million people are currently living, below the poverty line of 1.25 dollars per day in 48 Least Developed Countries (LDCs). 34 out of 48 LDCs are in Africa, where the daily consumption is around 20-25 cents a day, Tesfachew said.

“We always believed that economic growth is the key to development, in terms of rising incomes, industrialisation and poverty reduction…But we know that all this has not happened. What drives growth, matters. But if growth is not originating where the poorest live and work (in rural areas), then there is no way to bring inclusiveness,” he argued.

Growth is about investing in people, said Tesfachew. “Inclusiveness cannot be solved by transfer of income, but only by creating jobs, which is the most effective and dignified way to reduce poverty,” he continued.

“That is why the private sector is very critical in creating jobs and opportunities. The challenge of the 2030 SDGs is to lead growth by creating jobs and bringing more income, consumption and demand for investments. Inclusiveness should benefit everyone, and hence, the idea of leaving no one behind.”


Earthquake Survivors Struggle Amid Fuel Shortages due to Protests

At 40, Durga Rajak, co-owner of “Mailadai Hans ko Choila,” a popular eatery in Kathmandu, is learning to light a stove all over again. However, this time she is using diesel fuel instead of kerosene. She admits this is a risky job. “There is always the danger of a blast, so I must never pump […]