2018 ARFSD ends with Africa agreeing to up its game in implementing SGDs

Dakar, Senegal, May 4, 2018 (ECA) – The fourth session of the Africa Regional Forum on Sustainable Development (ARFSD) ended in Dakar, Senegal, Friday with participants adopting a set of key messages they will take to the high-level political forum on sustainable development that will be held in New York in July.

The recommendations are expected to help Africa add impetus to the implementation of the 2030 Agenda for sustainable development and Africa’s 50-year development plan, Agenda 2063.

In closing remarks to the forum, Ms. Giovani Biha, Deputy Executive Secretary of the Economic Commission of Africa, said the meeting had been successful and productive resulting in concrete resolutions for Africa to step up the implementation of the two agendas and to ensure their bold goals are achieved within the set time frame.

“The messages that you have agreed upon require urgent, strong and coordinated actions, mostly by African countries themselves. In doing so, the forum is sending a strong message regarding the determination of African countries to take charge of their destiny and ensure long-lasting sustainable development and the resilience of our people,” she said.

 Ms. Biha said she shared the participants’ sentiment that resilient structural transformation in Africa required integrated strategies and approaches.

“This is a testament to your commitment to the coherent and integrated implementation and review of the 2030 Agenda and Agenda 2063. It reaffirms the indivisibility of the goals,” she said.

Ms. Biha said the ultimate success of the ARFSD would be measured by the individual and collective actions that countries will take in following-up on the outcomes of the forum.

“In that connection, the key messages need to be translated into concrete policies and action at the subnational, national, sub-regional and regional levels.”

“Moreover, I wish to call upon you all to use the outcomes of this forum to strengthen advocacy and garner wide-scale action to achieve the SDGs and the goals of the 2063 Agenda. I therefore invite countries, in particular those that will participate in voluntary national reviews, to use the outcomes to strengthen their submissions at the upcoming high-level political forum,” said Ms. Biha.

On its part, ECA, in collaboration with sister UN agencies, will work with and provide support to the Chair and members of the Bureau to effectively convey the outcomes of the ARFSD to the high-level political forum.

To enhance uptake of the recommendations of the forum, ECA will bring the outcomes to the upcoming Conference of African Ministers of Finance, Planning and Economic Development that is set for Addis Ababa, Ethiopia, next week.

“In so doing, we shall seek the translation of the recommendations into concrete follow-up actions that include programmatic support to our member States to implement and achieve the two agendas,” Ms. Biha added.

The forum was held under the theme; Transformation towards sustainable and resilient societies.

For his part, Senegal’s Environment and Sustainable Development Ministry Director, Mr. Cheikh Dieng, said his country was committed to initiatives that will ensure successful implementation of the SDGs and Agenda 2063.

“The SDGs are largely within our reach but we should ensure they are translated into our policies and programmes,” he said.

Lesotho’s Local Government Minister, Habofane Sixtus Lehana, praised the ECA and its partners for organizing the forum, adding the partnership was critical to Africa’s collective journey of achieving the SDGs and Agenda 2063 thereby driving the continent towards shared prosperity.

The forum was held under the theme; Transformation towards sustainable and resilient societies.


Issued by:

Communications Section
Economic Commission for Africa
PO Box 3001
Addis Ababa
Tel: +251 11 551 5826
E-mail: eca-info@un.org