Rabat, August 5th, 2019 (ECA) - The head of the Economic Commission for Africa, Vera Songwe and the Kingdom of Morocco’s State Secretariat for Sustainable Development and Nezha El Ouafi, who is also the current Chair of the African Regional Forum for Sustainable Development Bureau held a high-level meeting on Monday 5 August 2019, aimed at outlining a joint action plan on the implementation of the Marrakech Declaration, issued following the April 2019 African Regional Forum for Sustainable Development.
“The action plan is focused on tangible actions that can enable us to chart a course towards SDG implementation, from the local to the global level”, said Lilia Hachem Naas, Director of the ECA Office for North Africa. “The action plan aims to involve stakeholders in communities and municipalities with support from the ARFSD Bureau. The plan also aims to disseminate key messages through political actors at the highest level, in order to make Africa’s voice better heard and to focus on the development priorities that will enable the region to accelerate the implementation of Agenda 2030 and, through it, Agenda 2063 », she added.
The meeting discussed options for the organisation of tangible and achievable actions in order to popularize the ARFSD key messages by January 2020, both locally and internationally. They also identified several key dates to present and raise awareness on the key messages of the Marrakech declaration, including:
•The 8th Conference on Climate Change and Development in Africa (CCDA VIII) in August 2019
•The Sustainable Development Goals summit in September 2019
•The Intergovernmental Committees of Experts held by the ECA sub-regional offices (September to November 2019)
•The Conference of the Parties (COP25), in December 2019
•Meetings of the African Union specialized technical committees
In addition, ECA is planning to produce an analytical study on data availability in four priority areas of SDG implementation in Africa: Agriculture (SDG2), Health (SDG3), Education (SDG4) and Energy (SDG7). The resulting report will be presented at the 6th African Regional Forum for Sustainable Development (Harare, Zimbabwe, 24-27 February 2020).
The Marrakech Declaration confirms Africa’s commitment to implement the SDGs was presented following the 5th session of the African Regional Forum for Sustainable Development jointly by ECA and the State Secretariat for Sustainable Development in April 2019 in Marrakech (Morocco) under the theme: “Empowering people and ensuring inclusiveness and equality.” As the chair of the ARFSD Bureau, Nezha El Ouafi, has been tasked with conveying the voice of Africa at the international scene regarding the issues discussed by the Forum.