16 June 2016, Brussels – The United Nations’ Sustainable Development Goals provide a crucial basis to meet the challenges the world faces and unlock the huge potential for growth and sustainable development. This was the message delivered by High Representative Federica Mogherini as she opened the 2016 European Development Days.
The United Nations’ Sustainable Development Goals provide a crucial basis to meet the challenges the world faces and unlock the huge potential for growth and sustainable development. This was the message delivered by High Representative Federica Mogherini as she opened the 2016 European Development Days.
Over the past ten years, the EDDs have gathered more than 40,000 participants from governments, civil society and business. This year’s edition welcomed UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon, World Bank President Jim Yong Kim and leaders from Africa, the Pacific, Europe and around the globe.
In her opening address, Mogherini described the huge potential she sees as she travels the world: “We have a duty – even a moral obligation – to unlock the world’s immense potential for growth and for sustainable development,” she said.
However, she cautioned that, as wealth grows, inequalities are on the rise, instability is increasing and centres of conflict are multiplying: “The history of mankind is a history of migrations – but the scale and scope of the current phenomenon are totally unprecedented.”
“This is the reason why we need Agenda 2030 so strongly. This is why we needed the Sustainable Development Goals, and why Europe pushed so hard to get them approved,” Mogherini said.
She underlined the importance of equality in education, equality of pay, improved job opportunities, more sustainable consumption, reliable justice systems and freedom of expression.
Looking ahead to later in the month, Mogherini said a similar vision would inform her proposals for a Global Strategy for foreign and security policy: “A Global Strategy, not just a security strategy – because there is no real security without resilience, without growth, without democracy.”
She also pointed to the European Commission’s work on a “new and ambitious external investment plan”.
“We are working to get our business on board, to join forces, and to trigger extra public and private investments for up to 31 billion euros until 2020 – or even twice as much, if Member States will match the Commission’s contribution.”
Mogherini took the opportunity today to hold bilateral discussions with Faustin-Archange Touadéra, President of the Central African Republic, Prime Minister De Araujo of Timor Leste, President Gurib-Fakim of Mauritius, Pierre Krähenbühl, Commissioner-General of the UN Relief and Works Agency for Palestine Refugees in the Near East (UNRWA), Prime Minister Desalegn of Ethiopia, President Kaboré of Burkina Faso and Davis Choquehuanca Céspedes, Minister of Foreign Affairs of Bolivia.
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