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Summary report, 31 March – 4 April 2014

10th Session of the UN General Assembly’s (UNGA) OWG on SDGs

The tenth session of the UN General Assembly Open Working Group (OWG) on Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) took place from 31 March - 4 April 2014, at UN Headquarters in New York. Macharia Kamau, Permanent Representative of Kenya, and Csaba Kőrösi, Permanent Representative of Hungary, continued in their roles as Co-Chairs of the meeting, which is seeking to narrow down preferences expressed during a year-long “stocktaking” phase to develop a report on preferred sustainable development goals and targets.

Member States and Major Groups commented on a list of 19 “focus areas,” and potential targets related to each focus area, that had been distributed by the Co-Chairs and revised based on discussions at OWG-9 in early March. Delegates also heard the reactions of Major Groups to the focus areas, and discussed the way forward for its remaining three sessions. At the end of the meeting, the Co-Chairs indicated that they would revise the focus areas document based on the discussions at OWG-10, and make it available on 18 April to guide delegates’ preparation for OWG-11, which takes place from 5-9 May 2014. During the closing, Co-Chair Kamau highlighted that delegates had presented an incredible number of ideas for the goals and targets. Kamau said narrowing the proposed targets down is not going to be an easy process, but that it is the challenge UN Member States set for themselves at the UN Conference on Sustainable Development (Rio+20) in June 2012. He encouraged the Group to not “get stuck” in 19th and 20th century issues, but to keep 21st century issues such as climate change, ecosystems, social inclusion, and governance high on the agenda.


During the UN Conference on Sustainable Development held in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil in June 2012, governments agreed to launch a process to develop a set of SDGs. They called for establishing an OWG that is transparent and open to stakeholders, and comprised of 30 representatives from the five UN regional groups, nominated by UN Member States, to elaborate a proposal for SDGs. They also called on the OWG to submit a report to the 68th session of the General Assembly, containing a proposal for SDGs for consideration and appropriate action.

The Rio+20 outcome document outlines, inter alia:

•  the importance of remaining firmly committed to the full and timely achievement of the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) and of respecting all Rio Principles, taking into account different national circumstances, capacities and priorities;

•  the SDGs should be action-oriented, concise and easy to communicate, limited in number, aspirational, global in nature and universally applicable to all countries, and focused on priority areas for the achievement of sustainable development;

•  the need to ensure coordination and coherence with the processes considering the post-2015 development agenda, and to receive initial input to the OWG’s work from the UN Secretary-General in consultation with national governments;

•  the need to assess progress towards the achievement of the goals, accompanied by targets and indicators, while taking into account different national circumstances, capacities and levels of development; and

•  the importance of global, integrated and scientifically-based information on sustainable development and of supporting regional economic commissions in collecting and compiling national inputs to inform this global effort.

The UN General Assembly (UNGA) endorsed the outcome document, titled The Future We Want, in resolution 66/288 on 30 November 2012.

UNGA RESOLUTION 67/203: On 21 December 2012, the UNGA adopted resolution 67/203, which calls for the OWG to report to the Assembly in the early part of its 68th session, preferably before the first meeting of the high-level political forum (HLPF). It also calls for the OWG to report regularly on its progress, taking into account the convening of the first HLPF and the UNGA Special Event to follow-up on efforts made towards achieving the MDGs.

UNGA DECISION ESTABLISHING THE OWG (67/555): On 22 January 2013, the UNGA adopted a decision establishing the membership of the OWG as allocated to the five UN regional groups. According to the annex to the decision, six seats are held by single countries: Benin, Congo, Ghana, Hungary, Kenya and Tanzania. Nine seats are held by pairs of countries, as follows: Bahamas/Barbados; Belarus/Serbia; Brazil/Nicaragua; Bulgaria/Croatia; Colombia/Guatemala; Mexico/Peru; Montenegro/Slovenia; Poland/Romania; and Zambia/Zimbabwe. Fourteen seats are held by trios of countries, as follows: Argentina/Bolivia/Ecuador; Australia/Netherlands/UK; Bangladesh/Republic of Korea/Saudi Arabia; Bhutan/Thailand/Viet Nam; Canada/Israel/US; Denmark/Ireland/Norway; France/Germany/Switzerland; Italy/Spain/Turkey; China/Indonesia/Kazakhstan; Cyprus/Singapore/United Arab Emirates; Guyana/Haiti/Trinidad and Tobago; India/Pakistan/Sri Lanka; Iran/Japan/Nepal; and Nauru/Palau/Papua New Guinea. One seat is shared by four countries: Algeria/Egypt/Morocco/Tunisia.

UNGA SPECIAL EVENT TOWARDS ACHIEVING THE MDGS: The High-Level Special Event took place on 25 September 2013 at UN Headquarters in New York. The Outcome Document of the event determined that the work of the OWG will feed into international negotiations on the post-2015 development agenda, beginning in September 2014, and that a Global Summit will be held in September 2015 to agree on a new UN development agenda.

FIRST EIGHT SESSIONS OF THE OWG: The OWG held its first eight sessions between March 2013 and February 2014 at UN Headquarters in New York. During the first meeting (14-15 March 2013), participants shared their initial views on both the process and substance of the SDG framework. During the second meeting (17-19 April 2013), delegates focused on the overarching framework of poverty eradication and sustainable development, and cross-sectoral issues including: governance; gender equality and women’s empowerment; human rights and rights-based approaches; and means of implementation. Delegates at OWG-2 also discussed the Programme of Work for 2013-2014, and the following six OWG sessions focused on the issue clusters that were identified in this document.

The issue clusters for which the OWG conducted a “stocktaking” review were as follows:

•  OWG-3 (22-24 May 2013): food security and nutrition, sustainable agriculture, desertification, land degradation and drought, and water and sanitation;

•  OWG-4 (17-19 June 2013): employment and decent work for all, social protection, youth, education and culture, and health and population dynamics;

•  OWG-5 (25-27 November 2013): sustained and inclusive economic growth, macroeconomic policy questions (including international trade, international financial system and external debt sustainability), infrastructure development and industrialization, and energy;

•  OWG-6 (9-13 December 2013): means of implementation (science and technology, knowledge-sharing and capacity building), global partnership for achieving sustainable development, needs of countries in special situations, African countries, least developed countries (LDCs), landlocked developing countries (LLDCs), and small island developing states (SIDS) as well as specific challenges facing middle-income countries, and human rights, the right to development, and global governance;

•  OWG-7 (6-10 January 2014): sustainable cities and human settlements, sustainable transport, sustainable consumption and production (including chemicals and wastes), and climate change and disaster risk reduction; and

•  OWG-8 (3-7 February 2014): oceans and seas, forests, biodiversity, promoting equality, including social equity, gender equality and women’s empowerment, and conflict prevention, post-conflict peacebuilding and the promotion of durable peace, rule of law and governance.

Based on the first eight sessions of the OWG, the Co-Chairs released a “stocktaking” document on 14 February 2014 and a “focus areas” document on 21 February 2014. The 19 focus areas, which were the basis for discussions at OWG-9, were: poverty eradication; food security and nutrition; health and population dynamics; education; gender equality and women’s empowerment; water and sanitation; energy; economic growth; industrialization; infrastructure; employment and decent work for all; promoting equality; sustainable cities and human settlements; sustainable consumption and production; climate; marine resources, oceans and seas; ecosystems and biodiversity; means of implementation; and peaceful and non-violent societies, capable institutions.

OWG-9: The ninth session of the OWG met from 3-5 March 2014. Delegates considered the list of 19 “focus areas” that had been distributed by the Co-Chairs one week earlier, participated in a joint meeting with the Intergovernmental Committee of Experts on Sustainable Development Financing (ICESDF), and heard the reactions of Major Groups to the focus areas. Based on the discussion, the Co-Chairs indicated they would “tweak” the focus areas document as input for OWG-10.


On Monday, 31 March 2014, OWG Co-Chair Macharia Kamau opened the session and invited delegates to consider the day’s agenda items: a discussion on methodology, followed by a debate on possible goals and targets related to poverty eradication and promoting equality. Kamau also reminded delegates that the OWG only has 20 days left to complete its work. He reminded delegates that the OWG has already completed a year-long stocktaking process, and expressed his hope that they would resist the temptation to lecture on the agenda items.

Co-Chair Csaba Kőrösi introduced a definitional note on goals and targets, based on the discussions at the second session of the OWG, the September 2013 outcome on the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) and post-2015 development agenda, and the call for SDGs in the Rio+20 outcome document. Kőrösi noted that a goal expresses an ambitious, specific and actionable commitment, is concise and easy to communicate, and is aspirational. Targets, meanwhile, identify specific measurable objectives whose attainment would contribute in a major way to achieving one or more goals. He further noted that targets are aspirational yet attainable, are nationally relevant and time bound, and can be adjusted as science advances and if countries raise their level of ambition. Co-Chair Kamau invited delegates to discuss how to cluster the focus areas and to identify goals that are primary drivers of sustainable development, and targets that are actions and deliverables to help to attain these goals.


Bolivia, on behalf of the Group of 77 and China (G-77/China), reiterated that the outcome of the OWG must be based on the mandate of Rio+20 and reflect the Rio Principles, including on common but differentiated responsibilities (CBDR), which he said should be captured in the narrative accompanying the SDGs. He said the SDGs should not place additional restrictions on developing countries. He said the suggested clusters could be used for discussion without prejudice to the final selection of goals and targets. Many subsequent speakers agreed with this final point.

Brazil, also for Nicaragua, said the clustering of issues must meet the test of the Rio+20 outcome, and not introduce issues that do not enjoy consensus. He said the divisive issue of conflict may prove to be a costly distraction, but ideas such as rule of law could find an acceptable formulation in other areas. He added that most areas in the proposed goals address the challenges of developing countries, not developed countries, and they do not include enough on means of implementation (MOI). He also: supported developing a short narrative referencing key principles of Rio+20 without reopening it, including CBDR; requested a timeline with suggested outputs from further OWG meetings; and invited the UN system to contribute information for suggested targets and indicators.

Guinea Bissau, on behalf of the African Group, said MOI should be linked to each goal as well as being included in a stand-alone SDG.

Nauru, for the Alliance of Small Island States (AOSIS), called for acknowledging the needs of countries in special situations, said provision of MOI is paramount, and suggested focusing on the resilience of societies, the root causes of climate change, and participation in decision-making.

Benin, on behalf of the Least Developed Countries (LDCs), noted that the Millennium Declaration had numerical targets for six out of eight goals, but the draft focal areas for the SDGs do not yet have quantifiable, realistic timeframes. He said the SDGs should be based on differential and preferential treatment to LDCs, and MOI should be elaborated under each focus area.

Zambia, for the Landlocked Developing Countries (LLDCs), called attention to the second United Nations conference on landlocked developing countries in November 2014, which she said will produce a revised plan to feed into the post-2015 development agenda. She also said the SDGs should be guided by all Rio Principles.

The European Union (EU) said the global partnership will be built on the Monterrey/Doha, Busan and ICESDF processes, not only the OWG. He did not support addressing MOI under each SDG, in a “fragmented” manner. On the focus areas, he said: further developing the interlinkages can help to reduce the number of targets; the framework should recognize the benefits of sustainable consumption and production (SCP); climate change and disaster risk resilience should be actively embedded or mainstreamed in related goals and targets; and “peaceful and non-violent societies” should be considered as distinct from “rule of law and capable institutions.”

Trinidad and Tobago, on behalf of the Caribbean Community (CARICOM), said the economic dimensions, which are the “most overlooked,” must not be lumped into one goal, nor conflated with a goal on MOI. He said potential goals should include both core targets and additional targets that link them to other goals and strengthen all three dimensions of sustainable development.


POVERTY ERADICATION AND PROMOTION OF EQUALITY: On Monday, Australia, also for the UK and Netherlands, said the SDGs should be based on the MDGs, Rio+20 and the 25 September 2013 special event of the UNGA. He said the OWG “should not limit ourselves unnecessarily” with regard to existing processes, nor issues that appear difficult, such as “peaceful and non-violent societies.”

The US, also for Canada and Israel, objected to the characterization of “peaceful, non-violent societies, rule of law and capable institutions” as an “odd man out,” and said these issues should be reflected in two separate goal areas. On poverty eradication, she supported reflecting it across the whole framework, stressed the need to connect more people to markets, and called for a target on risk resilience. On promoting equality, she: said the goals and targets must ensure that no one is left behind; highlighted a possible target to reduce the number of people living below national poverty floors; and said targets should require fulfillment for the lowest quintile of the population.

Colombia, also for Guatemala, said the OWG should focus on defining targets, which must be limited in number. She called for focusing on interlinkages between targets, and identifying those that can be included under more than one goal. She added that the new agenda must: prioritize both poverty eradication and enabling conditions; have sustainable development as its foundation; address the global middle class; and include SCP. She opposed including a narrative at this stage.

Montenegro, also for Slovenia, said all SDGs must address the three dimensions of sustainable development. Interlinkages can help to connect issues with effective actions, and to rationalize and cluster the focus areas. On poverty eradication, he supported a target of zero people living below US$1.25 per day, as well as a target to reduce the number of people living below their country’s poverty line.

Peru, also for Mexico, highlighted the importance of culture and development, and disaster risk reduction (DRR). He proposed that the OWG identify sub-areas with clear links among all focus areas and those that could become goals. He said Focus Areas 12 (equality) and 14 (SCP) should be considered cross-cutting, and that some areas, such as natural disaster risk management, can help ensure integration of the three dimensions of sustainable development.

Benin, for the LDCs, called for a stand-alone area on “eradication of poverty, hunger and malnutrition,” and for poverty eradication and inequality to be grouped in a single “basket.” He highlighted inequality between countries, stating that only 15% of global poverty is due to variation within countries. He called for poverty eradication targets on ending extreme poverty, hunger and malnutrition for all, and ending multi-dimensional poverty. On equality, he supported empowering and inclusion of marginalized groups, equal economic opportunities, and promoting differentially high-income growth at the bottom of the income distribution. He also called for targets to address: full and productive employment and decent work for all; duty-free, quota-free market access for all LDCs on a preferential basis; and an increased voice for LDCs in global decision-making processes.

On poverty, Bolivia, for the G-77/China, called for reforming international financial institutions, especially governance structures, based on the full and fair representation of developing countries. He said unsustainable debt must be addressed and prevented, and stressed the role of regional development banks. He also emphasized CBDR, access to technology and capacity building to ensure adequate MOI for implementing poverty eradication policies and programmes, and regulation and supervision of financial markets and capital flows.

China, also for Indonesia and Kazakhstan, said the next draft should include a chapeau with the Rio Principles, especially CBDR. She stressed the value of a preamble for focus areas and elements that are not “goalable.” She also: asked for the definition of eradication of “extreme” poverty; suggested using the national poverty line to define relative poverty; and supported most of the bullet points on inequality between countries, but said that, within countries, this is an issue of national governance.

Italy, also for Spain and Turkey, suggested strengthening accountability issues, and said this element should be linked to the High-level Political Forum on Sustainable Development’s role in 2016, when it will conduct the annual ministerial review.

India said the clustering needs to reflect the template of the Rio+20 outcome, adding that he did not see peace as a separate cluster or goal. He said the SDGs need to be truly universal and include specific commitments for developed countries.

France, also for Germany and Switzerland, said every goal should be applicable and provide actions in every country, and they should be as specific as possible.

Guinea Bissau, on behalf of the African Group, said decent employment for all, especially youth, is a key goal. Cyprus, also for Singapore and the United Arab Emirates, said a consensus-based approach should continue to be the basis for the OWG’s work, and suggested that there is consensus for stand-alone goals on, inter alia, water and sanitation, energy, health, education, and gender empowerment.

Romania: stressed attention to peaceful, nonviolent societies and governance; said the focus should be on well-being and not income alone; and highlighted that poverty eradication is not possible if good governance is not in place.

Viet Nam, also for Bhutan and Thailand, said the SDGs should take into account agendas and programmes currently being implemented. He stressed that countries must be allowed to translate the goals to their own national development strategies and priorities

Sweden said the framework must mainstream human rights throughout. She called for elaboration of the interlinkages in order to capture the truly transformative targets. Regarding a narrative for the SDGs, she said the Rio+20 outcome, the September 2013 special event and the Millennium Declaration are a sufficient basis. She said that for economic growth to result in poverty reduction, it must be inclusive and sustainable. She said fighting inequality within countries is a prerequisite for poverty eradication. She also called for minimum social and economic protections to reduce vulnerabilities.

Bangladesh cautioned against bringing in new elements, as “this is primarily and principally a development agenda.” LDCs should get priority, he added. On poverty eradication, he supported a target on eliminating extreme poverty, as well as resolving the “definitional issue.” On MOI he said quality of official development assistance (ODA) is important. He advocated equality of economic opportunities, financial inclusion, and social protection floors.

The Republic of Korea expressed hope that consensus would emerge on CBDR and MOI. He advocated stand-alone goals on: poverty eradication; quality education for all; sustainable energy for all (SE4ALL); water and sanitation; economic growth; managing natural resources in a sustainable manner; and MOI. On eradicating poverty, he suggested targets on: eradicating absolute poverty; reducing the share of people living below their national poverty line; and enhancing social safety nets with emphasis on the poorest and most vulnerable populations.

Palau said: culture should be recognized as a driver and enabler for sustainable development; a data revolution is important for monitoring implementation and progress; a clear definition of poverty is needed; poverty eradication and equality within and between countries require peace and stability, good governance and rule of law.

Ireland, also for Denmark and Norway, called for eradicating poverty through sustainable development, noting that all people rely on natural resources for their livelihoods. To eradicate poverty irreversibly, economic growth must be pursued through inclusive and sustainable strategies. He said the poverty eradication goal must incorporate promotion of peaceful, non-violent and inclusive societies. He also called for targets on inclusive governance and accountability.

Papua New Guinea, also for Palau, Nauru and the Pacific SIDS, said the goals must reflect the needs of countries in special situations. He cited the Rio+20 emphasis on poverty eradication as the highest priority within the UN development agenda.

On poverty, Pakistan suggested targets to: eliminate by 2030 extreme poverty; reduce by half by 2030 the intensity of poverty based on nationally determined indices; and establish by 2030 social protection floors against poverty. On inequality, he proposed targets to: by 2030 halve the gap between the income ratios of the top 10 and bottom 40 percent nationally; reduce ethnic, religious, gender and other types of discrimination; increase migration flows from lower-income to higher-income countries; and by 2020 reform the international rules on trade, business accounting and intellectual property to ensure their coherence with the SDGs. He also emphasized education and energy as “equalizers.”

Zambia said poverty eradication should be the number one goal and include targets to increase: investments in infrastructure, the proportion of people that are food secure, access to quality and affordable education, access to healthcare services, and access to decent and gainful employment, among others.

Serbia suggested consolidating Focus Area 8 (economic growth) and Focus Area 11 (employment and decent work for all) into one area, as well as consolidating Focus Areas 9 and 10 (industrialization and infrastructure). Serbia noted its interest in Focus Area 19, which relates to the fight against organized crime and corruption.

Croatia, also for Bulgaria, said rule of law and good governance are fundamental, called for social protection for vulnerable groups, and said inequality must be dealt with as a cross-cutting issue. He also stressed the need for MOI to be contained in a separate focus area, to decide on goals and targets before discussing MOI, and to be mindful of the ICESDF’s work. He added that CBDR belongs in the context of climate-related issues.

Guyana said the SDGs should seek to make poverty irreversible, since many people are at risk of falling into it. He supported specific goals on poverty eradication and promoting equality, as well as supplementary elements in other goals to highlight interlinkages. He said equality of opportunity must also be fostered at the international level.

The Netherlands, also for Australia and the UK, proposed a goal on ending poverty, including three targets: eradicating extreme poverty as determined by reaching zero people living on less than US$1.25 per day; reducing the number of people vulnerable to extreme poverty, i.e. living on less than US$2.50 per day; and reducing the share of people living below their national poverty line. She also outlined seven elements on equality, including to: eliminate discrimination in laws, policies and practices; ensure equal economic opportunities for all; and strengthen social protection systems.

Italy, also for Spain and Turkey, said poverty should be measured using a multidimensional index that addresses its economic, social, cultural and territorial causes, and noted that extreme inequalities threaten democratic life.

Bhutan, also for Thailand and Viet Nam, supported multidimensional targets, including social safety nets that ensure access to education and health. In a national capacity, Bhutan noted the needs of people in the mountains for appropriate goals and targets.

Belarus supported a goal on poverty eradication, and said inequality should be addressed in a separate goal, and that globalization is the reason the world has grown, but also why inequality has grown.

Colombia, also for Guatemala, requested the Co-Chairs to provide a more facilitative process, including by pointing out areas of convergence. She proposed targets on, inter alia: universal access for men and women to energy services; ensuring safe and affordable water; ensuring equitable access to education; increasing the number of good and decent jobs and skills; reducing the burden of disease from malaria and other diseases; and protecting the rights of all to safe, affordable and nutritious food.

France, also for Germany and Switzerland, suggested targets to, inter alia: eradicate extreme poverty; reduce relative poverty and combat inequalities at the national and international levels; establish social protection floors; promote resilience of societies to natural disasters and violence; promote an open, multilateral trading system that is regulated; encourage responsible private foreign investments; reduce illicit financing and tax havens; reduce global warming to 2°C of pre-industrial levels; and ensure migrants’ rights.

Mexico, also for Peru, said poverty should be approached through a focus on income as well as access to food, health, social security, internet, and water, among others. Nicaragua, also for Brazil, welcomed a multidimensional approach to poverty eradication and said there should be an end to subsidies in developed countries.

Indonesia said SDGs should be universal and applicable to all and the principle of CBDR is imperative. Peru, for the Group of Friends of Culture, suggested targets to ensure that creative industries have new ways to integrate with the global economy. Cabo Verde stressed disaster management and said culture should be considered as an important deliverable. Timor Leste suggested measuring national poverty lines with data disaggregated by gender and social groups, and said her country’s experience demonstrates the links between peace and sustainable development.

Qatar highlighted the role of family policy in achieving primary universal education and women’s empowerment, and said it is fundamental to a sound post-2015 development agenda. She called for mainstreaming culture in the SDGs and post-2015 development agenda.

Costa Rica said: disaster risk reduction strategies should receive more importance under poverty eradication; “premature pregnancy” disadvantages families for the rest of their lives and subsequent generations; and human rights and rule of law remain weak throughout the text. On climate change, he said the Group must remain focused on the SDGs, promote resilience and adaptation capability, and promote natural disaster risk reduction and climate-based technologies.

Morocco said MOI should be included under each focus area, and CBDR should be a principle of the new partnership for development. He said employment and income creation should be among the main means to fight poverty, and urged addressing inequality through economic empowerment of the poor. He called for a target on poverty eradication in rural areas.

The Holy See emphasized the family’s importance in feeding and fostering the next generation and in addressing poverty. Nepal said mountain ecosystems should be addressed and LDCs should be given special attention. Uganda supported targets to: ensure the eradication of absolute poverty by 2030; reduce relative poverty by 50% by 2030, in the context of national poverty lines; and ensure the provision of social protection floors.

Austria said CBDR should be limited to its original context and not be expanded to the SDGs or the post-2015 development agenda as a whole, and suggested efforts to pursue “sustainable” economic growth.

Ethiopia supported a number one goal on “eradicating poverty in all its forms,” with targets on, inter alia: eliminating extreme poverty by 2030; providing social protection to vulnerable groups; building resilience in responding to natural disasters; achieving full and productive employment; increasing investment in rural infrastructure; rapid, sustained and inclusive economic growth; and ensuring market access.

Paraguay called for addressing reforms to the international financial institutions and concluding the Doha Round of trade negotiations. On poverty eradication and equality promotion, he said all other focus areas must converge in these two and be conducive to achieving them. He said poverty eradication and promoting equality are only attainable in LLDCs by promoting production diversification and ensuring market access.

Nigeria highlighted commodity pricing and trade, raising questions on men’s and women’s treatment in commodities trading, the role of local banks and stock exchanges, and the setting of international commodity prices.

GENDER EQUALITY AND WOMEN’S EMPOWERMENT; EDUCATION; EMPLOYMENT AND DECENT WORK FOR ALL; HEALTH AND POPULATION DYNAMICS: On Tuesday morning, Bolivia, for the G-77/China, reaffirmed his Group’s opposition to all gender-based violence and support for promoting equality and recognizing care work. He said employment targets should aim to provide jobs to young people and women, and called for strengthening health systems through recruitment, training of the health workforce, and ensuring access to medicine and vaccines, among others.

Zambia, for the African Group, called for access to treatment for HIV/AIDS, achieving universal access to quality and affordable education at all levels, and noted the need to include capacity building and technology transfer in means of implementation.

Ireland, also for Norway and Denmark, said all goals should support full human rights and supported targets on the elimination of violence, child, early and forced marriage, universal access to reproductive rights, and reducing unpaid care work.

Slovenia, also for Montenegro, said gender targets should include access to justice for women and girls, equal participation in decision-making, sexual and reproductive health and rights, equal access to education, equal pay for equal work, ending harmful customary practices, and protecting the human rights of elderly women. He also stressed: youth employment, women’s participation in the labor force, and reducing the gender pay and pension gap; and access to medicine, ending preventable deaths in children under five, women’s access to healthcare, and sexual and reproductive rights.

Nauru, for AOSIS, said targets should: address access to HIV prevention, treatment, care and support; strengthen the fight against malaria, tuberculosis and neglected tropical diseases; and reduce the threat of non-communicable diseases (NCDs).

Pakistan proposed targets to be achieved by 2030, including, inter alia, gender targets to: ensure prevention of and elimination of all forms of violence again girls and women; end child marriages; ensure equal rights of women to own and inherit property, sign a contract, start a business, open a bank account and secure credit, and eliminate discrimination against women in political, economic and public life. Health targets should include: halve the human and economic losses from water-related diseases and disasters; and introduce and implement national water quality standards. Targets on education should include: ensuring completion of universal primary education with the ability to read, write and count well; ensuring every child has access to lower secondary education; and increasing by 50% the number of women and men with technical and vocational skills. Targets on employment should call for, by 2020: evolving education-to-work transition policies to increase the employment rate of youth including from vulnerable categories; and by 2030, universalizing collective bargaining and freedom of association.

Colombia suggested, inter alia: fully implementing the MDGs on maternal health; working towards quality, universal healthcare coverage, including through linkages to infrastructure, education and energy; using MDG language for universal access to reproductive healthcare; linking health to the environmental burden of disease; adopting a target to increase new start-up enterprises; and aiming for convergence in education quality across income levels.

Trinidad and Tobago, for CARICOM, supported targets to, inter alia: end all forms of discrimination and violence against women; ensure access to safe drinking water; achieve high completion rates of education at all levels for boys and girls; integrate sustainable development and awareness of climate change in education curricula; reduce by 25% by 2025 deaths caused by NCDs; and address intellectual property rights for affordable drugs, technology transfer for modern health treatments, and financing for the expansion of rural health centers.

China, also for Indonesia and Kazakhstan, said women’s participation in planning and budgeting is important, and called for ensuring: equal access to health services for all women; equitable access to education; and access to credit for small and medium-sized enterprises. He said adequate means for universal health coverage should be ensured before that target is adopted.

Italy, also for Spain and Turkey, supported: addressing educational quality; linkages between education and training; aligning decent income and benefits of employment with productivity; increasing childcare facilities; and addressing education and employment issues related to migration.

Zambia, for the Southern African States, proposed education targets including: primary, secondary and tertiary education; gender equity; 100% literacy rates; improved learning environment for girls and women; and access to quality and affordable education. She said health targets should address primary health services, childhood diseases, NCDs, qualified healthcare providers, and access to essential drugs and medical technologies.

Poland, also for Romania, said employment could be considered a cross-cutting issue, with targets on equal access of women to the labor market, social security, and protection for those on parental leave, among others. On gender, she prioritized action on ending violence against women and girls, including early/forced marriages, women’s decision-making at all levels, eliminating gender-based discrimination in employment, and access to quality education at all levels. On health, she supported, inter alia, reducing child morbidity and HIV and universal access to essential services for survivors of sexual violence.

Benin, for LDCs, suggested, on gender, a target on equal access to education, basic services, healthcare, economic opportunities, and decision-making at all levels. On education, he stressed universal childhood education, effective learning outcomes, and universal adult literacy, and outlined MOI including exchange programmes, scholarships and support for LDCs’ national education plans. On health and population, he called for targets on reducing the costs of migration and remittances.

The US, also for Canada and Israel, called for stand-alone goals on education, health, and gender equality and the empowerment of women and girls. She also called for targets on: access to and quality of education; achieving the health targets of the MDGs, while also focusing on NCDs and air quality; and ending discrimination and violence against women. In her own capacity, the US emphasized that “sexual and reproductive health and rights must be a target in this agenda.”

Thailand, also for Bhutan and Viet Nam, called for targets on: universal health coverage by 2030; eliminating preventable child and maternal death through access to sexual and reproductive healthcare; universal, free, and quality primary and secondary education; ending all forms of violence and discrimination against women; and increasing the creation of decent jobs for all, including the most vulnerable.

The UK, also for Australia and the Netherlands, emphasized stand-alone goals on gender equality, health and education. He stressed that the education targets should be met by people with disabilities, low income and disadvantaged groups.

Peru, also for Mexico, supported ensuring schools have access to basic energy and a target on universal access to primary education. On health, Peru proposed targets on: eliminating HIV/AIDS and sexually transmitted diseases; promoting stronger building codes for healthcare facilities; reducing malnutrition; reducing deaths of teenagers; reducing healthcare costs; and reducing cancer and diabetes rates.

France, also for Germany and Switzerland, supported targets addressing discrimination and human rights, elimination of all forms of violence against women and girls, universal health coverage, ensuring that women have equal access and control of property and productive resources, and equal participation of women in all levels of decision-making. On education, he said targets should guarantee that education is high quality and inclusive. On employment, he said targets should address the need for a better relationship between work and family life and unemployment among young people, training and green jobs. On health, he supported sexual and reproductive rights and efforts to prevent non-communicable diseases.

Bolivia suggested: recognizing all forms of work; encouraging people to seek stable employment; ensuring access and ownership by and for women to productive financial means; and increasing and strengthening participation of women in leadership. He also said there should be: full health coverage including information and support on sexual rights; full access to medical treatment and medicine; efforts to eliminate malaria, tuberculosis and tropical diseases; and efforts to reduce road accidents.

Brazil, also for Nicaragua, suggested identifying the role of education in promoting a culture of peace. On employment, he suggested calling for an end to child labor, forced labor, human trafficking and slavery. On gender, he supported: the right to education; equal sharing of unpaid work; sexual and reproductive health and rights, in accordance with national legal frameworks; and women’s access to modern forms of technology.

New Zealand emphasized the need to consolidate the MDGs’ achievements towards universal access to basic education, while focusing greater attention on education quality.

The Maldives stressed the need for a goal on gender equality, to ensure that women have the same rights, access, and opportunities as men. On water and sanitation, he proposed a stand-alone goal that can take into account emerging challenges, climate change, and DRR.

Bulgaria suggested adding an action area on cultural rights, to promote inclusive development. Calling for stand-alone goals on education and health, she said employment and decent work should be considered in the context of growth.

Singapore, also for Cyprus and the United Arab Emirates, suggested gender targets of at least 50% of women in institutions of higher learning, as employees in the public sector and as managers in the public sector, and of equal access to all basic services. On employment, he highlighted: full employment including through green jobs; youth unemployment in post-conflict and conflict-affected countries; and promotion of social protection floors. On health, he highlighted mental health, reducing pollution, NCDs, and reducing occupational hazards.

Denmark, also for Norway and Ireland, suggested health targets on: preventing maternal and child mortality; universal access to sexual and reproductive healthcare and rights; communicable diseases; NCDs; environmental causes of disease, and malnutrition. On education, she highlighted: the right to education; universal, free primary and secondary quality education for girls and boys; high completion rates; matching skills to the labor market’s demands; and integrating sustainable development in curricula. On employment, she emphasized effective social protection.

Palau said targets on gender could address: participation in decision-making; the role of women in managing fisheries; and freedom from discrimination and violence. On education, he highlighted developing curricula on climate change and disasters, and education in social and mental health. On employment, he suggested establishing job placement centers and ensuring wage remuneration. On health and population, he called for ensuring access to various services at each stage of life, and addressing NCDs.

Bangladesh opposed a rights-based approach to the SDGs, and preferred adopting a focus on access and equality objectives. He supported ending discrimination against women and increasing their participation in decision-making processes, but said ending violence against women is a domestic issue, not a development issue. He proposed a target on universal, free, secondary education, and he called for putting in place health infrastructure and ensuring the affordability and accessibility of medicines.

Japan said gender equality and women’s empowerment, education, and universal health coverage should be stand-alone goals. He explained that calling for universal health coverage would encompass all other health objectives.

Iran said the gender focus should emphasize access. He called for an agreed method for providing disaggregated data across all goals. On education, he called for covering higher education schemes between countries. On health, he said diseases need transboundary cooperation, and on employment, he expressed concern about micro-management of employment policies.

India said enabling technologies can be a “game changer” and they should focus on the empowerment of women. Morocco said it is important to improve health facilities and infrastructure. Finland stressed the importance of including sexual and reproductive rights and health.

Sweden highlighted targets on: eliminating gender-based differences in access to and control over resources; eliminating all types of violence; guaranteeing equal political participation for women; guaranteeing literacy for all women and girls; and guaranteeing women and girls’ sexual and reproductive rights, which she said include access to contraception, skilled birth attendants and sexual education for all.

The Republic of Korea said a stand-alone goal on quality education for all should ensure free and universal education, with life-long learning and vocational training and access to education at all levels.

Rwanda stressed: quality, adequate, affordable, accessible healthcare for all; increased health financing and training; reducing the burden of care work for women; and nutrition and hygiene.

Latvia favored a rights-based approach. She stressed that the quality of education and life-long learning should be properly reflected. She also called for quality sexual and reproductive healthcare and rights, and reducing child and maternal morbidity.

Liechtenstein said gender targets should include ensuring women’s equal access to: justice; land, property and inheritance rights; and participation in decision making, including conflict prevention, resolution and recovery.

Greece suggested referencing cultural rights, to promote inclusive social development. Austria said the quality of education should be taken into account. Costa Rica strongly supported a stand-alone goal on gender empowerment and the treatment of this topic as a cross-cutting issue. She suggested a target on employment and decent work for all to promote efficient labor markets and “sound microeconomic policies.”

Jordan said ensuring gender equality remains a universal priority, and called for improving women’s access to services that respond to their needs. She called education for all a “significant but unfinished agenda.”

Nigeria said that concepts associated with sexual and reproductive health should be clearly defined and understood. He stressed that the subject of population dynamics should not be limited to a discussion of sexual and reproductive health, but should also include consideration of issues of urbanization, migration, and transportation.

WATER AND SANITATION, AND SUSTAINABLE AGRICULTURE, FOOD SECURITY AND NUTRITION: On Tuesday afternoon, Bolivia, on behalf of the G-77/China, said considerations must be given to equitable and universal drinking water, sanitation, and hygiene to ensure access to water for all. On sustainable agriculture, food security, and nutrition, Bolivia said governance of fisheries, forests and land are voluntary guidelines and under the jurisdiction of national governments. He also stressed the need to address perverse effects of agricultural market distortions.

Guinea Bissau, for the African Group, proposed a goal to “promote sustainable agriculture and achieve food security and adequate nutrition for all.” He also stressed the importance of universal access to safe water in a sustainable manner, and enhancing the protection and management of resources to safeguard water quality for all uses.

Nauru, for AOSIS, said the focus area on water and sanitation needs to take into account the concept of water security, balanced with ecosystem conservation and biodiversity preservation. On sustainable agriculture, she said natural ecological processes that support food production systems must be maintained, and the crucial role of healthy marine ecosystems be prioritized.

The United Arab Emirates, also for Cyprus and Singapore, supported “equitable universal access to safe and affordable drinking water,” improved wastewater treatment and increased water quality. He suggested including protection of ecosystems and biodiversity in the sustainable agriculture focus area, while also addressing the need to end hunger, sustainably increase production, address the needs of rural communities, and provide a desertification, land degradation and drought (DLDD) target.

China, also for Indonesia and Kazakhstan, said water and sanitation should be addressed through an “access” approach, rather than a rights-based approach. She did not support the reference to water governance, and said water-related technologies should be referenced in an MOI section for that goal. She suggested naming the agriculture focus area “Agricultural development, food security, and nutrition,” focusing on eradicating hunger and ensuring year-round access by all to safe and adequate food.

Benin, for the LDCs, said MOI for water and sanitation could include financial and technical support for pipelines and sewage networks, and preserving and developing water sources to enhance water productivity. He suggested adding “rural development” to the focus area on agriculture and food security, with targets on investment in rural infrastructure, humanitarian food emergencies, and price volatility.

Iceland spoke for members of the Group of Friends on DLDD: Algeria, Benin, Botswana, Burkina Faso, Kyrgyzstan, Mongolia, Namibia, Qatar, and Republic of Korea. In support of a land degradation neutral world by 2030, she suggested targets that address, inter alia: managing land sustainably and regenerating degraded land; enacting drought preparation policies in all drought-prone countries; and capacity building to restore or rehabilitate degraded land, and reverse land degradation.

Zambia, for Southern African States, said water and sanitation targets could address reducing distances to water sources, increasing investment in water harvest technologies, and rural access to infrastructure services. She said targets on agriculture could address increasing productivity, achieving food security and improving nutrition status especially for women and children, achieving zero post-harvest food losses and waste, and increasing access to financial services. France suggested targets on: universal access to water; hygiene and sanitation; integrated water resource management, including cross-border; wastewater management; insuring and improving the quality of surface waters; and resilience in water catastrophes, including efforts to prevent and reduce the impact of drought and water emergencies.

Trinidad and Tobago, for CARICOM, said water-related targets should: ensure safe and affordable drinking water; extend wastewater treatment; improve efficiency of water use; enhance effective water governance; and protect and restore water-linked ecosystems. On agriculture, he suggested targets to: increase research on sustainable agriculture technologies; enhance biological diversity; strengthen resilience of farming systems to climate change; reduce post-harvest loss and food waste; eliminate harmful agricultural subsidies; and contain speculation on food commodities.

Ireland, also for Denmark and Norway, supported food and nutrition security targets on productivity to focus on small producers, in particular women and indigenous, climate-smart production, and the nutritional quality of food. He also proposed targets on water and sanitation, including: universal access to safe and affordable drinking water and adequate sanitation; more efficient water productivity and use; improved management of water resources; and reducing impacts of water-related disasters.

Slovenia, also for Montenegro, said a goal on water and sanitation should call for universal access and full enjoyment of the human right to safe drinking water and sanitation for all. He highlighted connections between water and mountain areas, and said a goal on sustainable agriculture, food security and nutrition should seek to end hunger and ensure that everyone has access to safe, affordable, and nutritious food.

Brazil, also for Nicaragua, stressed ending agricultural protectionism and proposed: improving market access for developing countries; integration of small-holder farmers into regional and inter-regional markets; and a universal, rules-based, open, non-discriminatory, multilateral trading system. On water and sanitation, he emphasized that there is no reference to a “water secure world” or “water governance” in the Rio+20 outcome document, and said these concepts should not be included in the SDGs.

Palau, also for Nauru, Papua New Guinea, the Pacific small island developing states (PSIDS) and Timor Leste, suggested that a dedicated SDG on oceans could include a target on restoring or maintaining the health of fish stocks. On water, he said targets could address, inter alia: reducing the concentration of greenhouse gases (GHGs) to below 350 ppm, and limiting warming to below 1.5°C; strengthening mitigation and adaptation measures; controlling pollution in waterways, subsoil and oceans; and strengthening governance and rule of law to foster access to quality, safe drinking water and sanitation.

Croatia, also for Bulgaria, said action areas could include food availability, ending child malnutrition and stunting, improving efficiency of water use in agriculture, enhancing agricultural biodiversity, and access to financial services.

Romania, also for Poland, said targets on water and sanitation could include: ensuring universal access to safe drinking water and sanitation and hygiene; improving water efficiency; and ensuring good water quality. On food and agriculture, she highlighted: eliminating the use of toxic chemicals; responsible land governance; consultation and partnerships with local communities; year-round access to safe, affordable and nutritious food; reducing stunting; ending hunger; reversing land degradation; and addressing the feminization of poverty.

Argentina, also for Bolivia and Ecuador, called for a reference to water sustainability and integrated water management. She also supported establishing a human right to water and sanitation and using the term “water sustainable world.” She proposed that an agriculture and food goal must bear in mind the need for easy access to food, production in harmony with nature, and promotion of family, indigenous and campesino agriculture.

Guatemala, also for Colombia, said on food security, sustainable agriculture, and nutrition, market issues should fall under the goal’s MOI section.

Viet Nam, also for Bhutan and Thailand, emphasized that targets should be interlinked and “tweetable.” He proposed targets on: access to safe and affordable drinking water and adequate sanitation, efficient use of water; integrated water resource management; reducing human and economic loss from water-related disasters; eradicating child malnutrition and stunting; universal and year-round access to affordable, safe and nutritious food; increased productivity with a focus on small-holder farmers; and reduced post-harvest loss and food waste.

The Netherlands, also for the UK and Australia, supported targets on: universal access to safe drinking water, sanitation, and hygiene; improved management of water resources; reduced discharge of untreated wastewater; reduced risks and mortality of disasters; improved water governance; ending hunger through access to sufficient, safe, and affordable food; reducing child stunting and anemia; increasing agricultural production; and reducing post-harvest losses and food waste.

Mexico, also for Peru, called for recognition of the interdependence between water, energy and food, and to increase access to sanitation. He also highlighted the need to protect mountain water systems, reduce the mortality and economic losses from natural disasters, and recognize the right to food and food security, as a better focus than increasing agricultural productivity.

Canada, also for the US and Israel, called for increasing support for agricultural research, improving land management practices, and incorporating fisheries issues. He said targets should reflect the multiple uses of water resources.

Italy, also for Spain and Turkey, highlighted participatory governance, reducing post-harvest loss, rural development, linking the quality of food and small farming, and sound management of chemicals and wastes.

Sri Lanka said a target for 100% food security should be supported with adequate MOI, and advocated targets to address child malnutrition, breastfeeding, and efficiency of water used in farming.

Burkina Faso suggested targets to promote family agriculture, support small producers, and support women at all levels of decision-making in food systems.

Japan said that on food security and nutrition, production as well as productivity should be increased, and proposed addressing disaster risk reduction. He said the term “harmful” subsidies needs to be defined.

Belarus said a goal on food security and nutrition should include interrelated components such as climate change, trade policy, population growth, and research and development.

Pakistan suggested, on both sustainable agriculture and water, prioritizing access, waste reduction and yield and resilience increases. He suggested that targets to be achieved by 2030 could include: doubling food production in each country; ensuring farming systems are adaptable to climate change and disasters; ensuring universal access in rural areas to basic services; achieving universal access to safe drinking water, sanitation and hygiene; improving by 50% sustainable use of water and increased water productivity for economic growth; reducing wastewater by more than half and increasing by more than half its reuse; and increasing resilience to water-related disasters and impacts of climate change.

India, on food and agriculture, supported the emerging “broad consensus” for a first target on ending hunger and ensuring access to food, and observed similar support for a target on malnutrition and stunting. He called for concrete deliverables on preventing food waste in developed countries, as well as food loss in developing countries, and for treating these as two separate issues. On water and sanitation, he said transboundary cooperation is politically difficult.

Bangladesh called for synergy among several items on improving water use efficiency or water productivity. He suggested addressing how private technologies can be made available on agriculture and water and sanitation, and preferred the term “sustainable agriculture and food and nutrition security.”

Egypt proposed targets on water facilities and agriculture, water management, water-related vocational training, and investment for water and sanitation services. He also supported targets to eradicate hunger and ensure year-round access by all to affordable, safe, and nutritious food, and addressing excessive price volatility.

Sweden suggested targets on, inter alia: effective management and sustainable use of water resources at all levels, taking into account the effects of climate change; ensuring access to clean drinking water for all; ensuring access to adequate sanitation for all; and sustainable productivity, land use, nutritious food, and sustainable consumption.

Finland emphasized hygiene, the need to eliminate open defecation, and transboundary water cooperation. She also highlighted the interlinkages of water with gender equality, climate, peaceful societies and rule of law. Costa Rica proposed a goal to “promote education for sustainable water consumption and recycling,” with a target focusing on DRR related to water. Qatar emphasized referencing DLDD and its relationship to sustainable agriculture and food security.

Lebanon supported targets on, inter alia: improved water use efficiency; ensuring access to water; extending wastewater treatment, recycling and use; and protecting and restoring water source ecosystems. She also called for ensuring that small-scale food producers have access to knowledge, halting and reversing DLDD, ensuring that markets are functioning and accessible to all, and targeting the economic empowerment of rural women.

Ethiopia suggested targets on: improving sustainable use and development of water resources and strengthening water governance; increasing agricultural productivity by 50%; ensuring conservation of natural resource ecosystems; ensuring extension of better farming and fishing practices; and an equitable international trade system.

Jordan supported, inter alia, improving water efficiency and reducing water losses and committing to the progressive elimination of differences between those who have and those who do not have access to water, and noted that water cooperation across borders can strengthen water security.

Nigeria said many proposals could be found in the 2012 UNDP Africa Report. He emphasized partnerships to advance agricultural production, as well as seed banks. He also called attention to the lessons learned from the Budapest Water Summit and high-level water meetings in Africa.

Austria said a goal on water and sanitation should include hygiene, mountain ecosystems, and regional cooperation on water-related issues. He also stressed the issues of biodiversity, post-harvest losses, and strengthening the resilience of farming systems to climate change.

ECONOMIC GROWTH, INDUSTRIALIZATION, INFRASTRUCTURE, AND ENERGY: On Wednesday morning, Bolivia, on behalf of the G-77/China, said that equitable macroeconomic issues and a genuine global partnership for development are important priorities. Industrialization, he said, is essential for achieving sustainable development in developing countries, and for developing products and skills. He called for the roles and responsibilities of implementation of goals to be differentiated according to national circumstances, and for CBDR to guide the translation of each SDG into targets.

Tanzania, for the African Group, proposed three stand-alone goals: “promote sustained, inclusive, and equitable economic growth”; “promote rapid industrialization for employment and decent work”; and “promote access to affordable and reliable energy for all.” Proposed targets included focus on investment, infrastructure, and technological capability in developing countries.

Nauru, on behalf of AOSIS, called for stand-alone goals on: sustained, inclusive, economic growth; infrastructure; and sustainable energy for all. All proposed targets included specific reference to countries in special situations.

Belarus called for a stand-alone goal to strengthen the institution of the family. Ethiopia, on behalf of the Friends of Inclusive and Sustainable Industrial Development, called for increasing production capacities, and said industrialization must take place within an environmental sustainability framework.

Canada, also for the US and Israel, called for capturing factors that underpin private-sector-led growth. He suggested a cross-cutting target on women’s economic empowerment. On energy, he supported a dedicated goal, highlighted phasing out inefficient fossil fuel subsidies, and urged transparent, inclusive and sustainable management of the energy sector.

Zambia, for the LLDCs, proposed a goal to achieve high and inclusive growth for sustainable development. Targets could address infrastructure development, domestic and international competitive value chain industries, reducing transport costs, and enhancing resilience, adaptation and mitigation to climate change for LLDCs. She also proposed a goal to achieve rapid industrialization and infrastructure development.

Papua New Guinea, also for Nauru, PSIDS and Timor Leste, suggested targets on an energy technology depository and tax incentives for small- and medium-sized enterprises. He said illegal, unreported and unregulated (IUU) fishing needs to be addressed, loans need to take into account the special situation of PSIDS, and cultural and marine ecotourism should be assisted.

Nicaragua, also for Brazil, called for implementation of quotas and governance reforms in the International Monetary Fund (IMF), said economic growth and industrialization play a key role in decent work, supported an international trade system that is open and non-discriminatory, and more favorable conditions for renegotiating debts.

Trinidad and Tobago, for CARICOM, promoted an energy goal on “access to sustainable energy for all,” and a goal on “achieving sustained and inclusive economic growth for sustainable development.” He proposed that targets for industrialization, infrastructure, and employment fall under these, and other proposed, SDGs.

Ireland, also for Denmark and Norway, proposed energy targets on ensuring universal access, increasing the share of renewable energy in the global mix, and improving energy efficiency. Considering the subjects of economic growth, infrastructure, and industrialization together under a goal for “sustainable and inclusive economic growth,” he proposed targets on enabling business environments, job creation, sustainable growth, the participation of women in the economy, disaster resilience, and resource efficiency.

Benin, on behalf of the LDCs, proposed goals on energy, infrastructure, economic growth, and industrialization, and said the issue of promoting equality should be addressed along with each of these issues. Targets proposed, in addition to those in the Focus Areas document, would address technical support for LDCs, LDC access to telecommunications networks, providing modern energy technologies to LDCs, and export diversification.

On industrialization, Montenegro, also for Slovenia, called for appropriate use and management of chemicals, and investing in resource efficiency. On infrastructure, he called for promoting sustainable transportation and improving the sustainable tourism infrastructure. He supported a stand-alone goal on energy.

China, also for Indonesia and Kazakhstan, supported a stand-alone goal on each of the four issues in this cluster. On inclusive economic growth, she prioritized increasing income and improving living standards. On industrialization, she favored the term “inclusive, sustainable industrial development.” On energy, she suggested focusing on modern, affordable energy for development, and ensuring global energy safety.

Uganda proposed a goal to promote sustained, inclusive economic growth, including a target on economic growth rates in LDCs, middle-income countries, and developed countries, and a target on productive capacities. He also proposed goals to promote industrialization for employment and decent work, and to promote access to modern, affordable and reliable energy for all.

Australia, also for the Netherlands and UK, proposed a goal on strong, sustainable and inclusive economic growth and jobs. Targets could address productive and decent jobs, enabling environment for entrepreneurs, and natural resource management. He also proposed a goal on promoting sustainable energy and infrastructure, with targets on phasing out inefficient fossil fuel subsidies, safe and sustainable transport, and climate resilience.

Ecuador supported doubling the global rate of energy efficiency improvement and setting up economies based on renewable energy as long as the high cost of investment is addressed. He also suggested that developing countries should increase the value added in relation to their raw material exports, and should have diversified energy sources so they are not dependent on imports.

Italy, also for Spain and Turkey, said access to energy is a human right and should be guaranteed to all people. He said the post-2015 development agenda should integrate sustainability and equity in all of the issues in this cluster, and should speak of inclusive and sustainable economic growth. He also said the private sector needs to commit to be transparent and accountable.

Guatemala, also for Colombia, stressed the need to prioritize, reduce the number of focus areas, and create a concise, relevant agenda. She proposed two stand-alone goals on economic growth and energy, and suggested that industrialization and infrastructure be incorporated into economic growth or SCP goals. She also said a chapeau text for each goal area is not needed, and that she does not support multiple mentions of specific groupings of countries, which can be accounted for through indicators.

Sweden proposed a goal on “sustainable and inclusive economic growth,” covering decent jobs, shared prosperity, and a low-carbon, resource efficient economy. She also suggested the need to create an enabling environment for goals and jobs, including through good governance and the rule of law.

Viet Nam, also for Thailand and Bhutan, called for a goal on economic growth to measure “sustained economic growth of a certain percentage per annum, appropriate to varying levels of development.” He called for MOI to include transfer of technology, international trade, and access to adequate financing, including committed ODA.

Cyprus, also for Singapore and the United Arab Emirates, called for the inclusion of SCP in all three focus areas, as well as gender mainstreaming across the goals. He proposed a target on human capital development, through inclusive social policies and investment in labor skills. On energy, he said SE4All is a good basis for a global goal and targets.

France, also for Germany and Switzerland, proposed merging economic growth and infrastructure into one goal, including targets on employment.  He also proposed targets on environmental accountability, green economy, participation of women in the economy, access to services, energy efficiency, and phasing out fossil fuel subsidies.

Zambia, for Southern African States, suggested including economic growth and industrialization targets under poverty eradication. He proposed a goal to “achieve diversified, competitive and inclusive sustainable economic growth,” with targets on infrastructure, diversification, access to reliable and renewable energy, and technology transfer. A second goal to “ensure universal access to clean, reliable and affordable energy” could include targets on renewable and alternative energy sources, and reducing GHG emissions from energy.

Bulgaria, also for Croatia, said an energy goal should remain flexible to local circumstances. On economic growth, she highlighted the quality of growth, supported a stand-alone goal on sustainable and inclusive growth, and suggested targets on decent jobs, productive capacity, reducing stress on the environment, and enhancing economic governance.

Peru, also for Mexico, said economic growth targets could address resilience of public financing systems, and increasing autonomous income per household. On industrialization, targets could address access to financial services, and production capacity especially in formalizing micro and small businesses. He said infrastructure should address collection and management of waste. On energy, he said energy access should not overshadow the need to increase use of renewables.

Maldives highlighted the phase-out of fossil fuel subsidies, said the SDG on energy should aim to avoid damaging the planet, and suggested a focus on sustainable electricity, which is easiest to decouple from fossil fuels.

Saudi Arabia supported energy targets on ensuring universal access, but opposed specific mention of low- or zero-emission technologies and fossil fuel subsidies. The focus areas of economic growth, industrialization, and infrastructure, he said, require serious MOI, including technology transfer, finance, and capacity building.

Japan said the area of economic growth must link with other focus areas, on the basis of inclusive, sustainable, industrial development. He called for energy targets that are consistent with the SE4ALL targets.

Bangladesh supported a stand-alone goal on “sustained, inclusive, economic growth” and supported targets proposed by Nauru, Australia and AOSIS.

Pakistan emphasized the need to target a few, specific priority areas to overcome challenges in implementing the SDGs. On economic growth, he proposed targets on countries moving to the next category of development, reducing the debt stock of highly indebted countries, and accounting for natural capital in gross domestic product (GDP) calculations. On energy, he emphasized the need to differentiate targets of developed and developing countries.

Iran: said text on macroeconomic policy coordination and a regulatory fiscal system should be specified at the international level; suggested a target on localizing industrial productive capacity of tradable goods; and proposed that access to modern energy services should be “at all stages of production, transport and consumption.” Regarding phase-out of fossil fuel subsidies, he stressed that the Rio+20 agreement is not a commitment, but an “invitation” to rationalize inefficient subsidies.

Poland suggested merging these four focus areas into one goal. Action areas and targets could address: ensuring universal access for both women and men to modern energy services, improving energy efficiency and promoting cleaner, modern, low-emission energy technologies; promoting enabling business environments and conducive regulatory fiscal/tax systems; advancing environmentally sound industrial processes; promoting green economy; improving water supply systems, sewage and wastewater treatment; and proper use of urban space.

Belarus said an energy goal would benefit from a strong component on MOI, especially technology transfer. He said energy issues should be dealt with in a more systematic manner under the ownership of all states.

Romania supported grouping together the focus areas on economic growth and industrialization. Infrastructure could be incorporated elsewhere. On energy, she supported SE4ALL and suggested incentivizing the development of efficient and low-carbon, clean and renewable infrastructures.

Indonesia suggested economic growth targets on: ensuring robust growth per annum in low-income countries; adequate and sustained growth; and ensuring comprehensive development of productive capacity in developing countries. He also called for reform of the international financial system.

India expressed strong support for stand-alone goals on economic growth, industrialization and infrastructure. On energy, he favored a stand-alone goal, in which universal access to modern energy would be a key pillar. He urged caution on eliminating subsidies for consumption of fossil fuels in developing countries, noting the potential impact of energy access for the poor.

Sri Lanka supported targets to double the share of the industrial sector of each country by 2030, enhance the efficiency of all industries, and increase the proportion of renewable energy used in industries by agreed proportions.

Paraguay said MOI need to be explicit and detailed, and emphasized the challenges that LLDCs face. He called for the development of information technologies, improved efficiency of transport systems, means to ensure diversification of production within LLDCs, access to markets and freedom of transportation, and an open, rule-based, predictable and non-discriminatory trade system.

The Russian Federation supported a goal on industrial development that is cutting-edge and science-driven. He noted the absence of a separate section on transport, and said this issue needs large-scale investments. He said text on energy should refer to access to energy sources and services.

Lebanon supported investment in human capital, said that investments in sound infrastructure such as transportation and information and communication technologies increase the number of decent jobs and productive livelihoods. She suggested that, by 2030, natural capital should be accounted for in GDP. She also called for increasing the share of renewable energy, improving energy efficiency, and mobilizing finance to invest in infrastructure.

Costa Rica supported increasing the number of scientists, engineers, and research and development investment in entrepreneurial development.

SUSTAINABLE CITIES AND HUMAN SETTLEMENTS, PROMOTING SUSTAINABLE CONSUMPTION AND PRODUCTION, AND CLIMATE: On Thursday morning, Co-Chair Kamau described the focus areas contained in this cluster as “post-MDG issues.” In dealing with such uncharted waters, he said, tolerance would be needed as the Group tries to define goals and targets.

Bolivia, for the G-77/China, called for time-bound, effective implementation of the 10-Year Framework of Programmes on Sustainable Consumption and Production (10YFP), on which developed countries should take the lead. On climate change and disaster risks, he said “while hazards are natural, disasters are preventable,” and that the SDGs must be consistent with consensus reached in United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) processes.

Tanzania, for the African Group, proposed a goal to “enhance the quality, resilience and protection of the environment, and promote sustainable exploitation, management and use of natural resources,” which could include targets on biodiversity, SCP, indoor air pollution, and IUU fishing. He also proposed a goal to “combat desertification and land degradation, mitigate drought, and promote sustainable management of land and oceanic space,” with targets including zero net land degradation by 2030, enhancement of forest carbon stocks, and full implementation of regimes governing oceans and seas.

Nauru, for AOSIS, supported treating climate change as a cross-cutting issue, and proposed nine targets to be placed under one or more goals. The targets include: build resilience and adaptive capacity; close the pre-2020 mitigation gap to help keep global temperature rise below 1.5°C; promote economic incentives for investing in low-carbon solutions; education and mass awareness of climate change; protect marine and terrestrial carbon sinks and coral reefs; double investment in clean, safe, renewable energy and infrastructure in developing countries; risk management tools and facilities; and environmentally friendly infrastructure.

Benin, for LDCs, proposed a target on access to affordable habitat and to infrastructure and basic services, improving living conditions in poor rural areas and shantytowns, and affordable, reliable transport. On SCP, he requested a direct commitment from developed countries. He supported a stand-alone goal on climate change and targets on keeping temperature rise below 1.5°C.

Mexico, also for Peru, proposed that targets measure progress on the efficient use of natural resources, reduction in GHG emissions, and cooperation between the public and private sectors. He also emphasized the need to account for indigenous knowledge and to report the origin and sustainability of products.

China, also for Kazakhstan and Indonesia, proposed the inclusion of urbanization in a goal on sustainable cities and human settlements, with targets on urban planning, people-centered urbanization, resilience to extreme weather, and access to infrastructure and services. She said that developed countries should take the lead on SCP, and that its overlap with other focus areas should be reflected in a balanced manner. She called for climate change to be addressed according to CBDR and the UNFCCC framework, and to be reflected in a cross-cutting manner, rather than as a stand-alone goal.

Colombia, also for Guatemala, stressed the need for limited targets (three or four) per goal area. She said climate should not be a stand-alone goal, while sustainable cities and SCP should have dedicated goals. Suggested targets on SCP include: improving energy efficiency and the sustainability of supply chains; improving resource productivity, efficiency, and sufficiency by 50% by 2030; reducing hazardous chemical use and emissions; and providing sustainability information on products for citizens and consumers.

Brazil, also for Nicaragua, called for SCP targets to focus on changing consumer lifestyles, especially in developed countries. He stressed that the term “developed countries” be used instead of the proposed term “industrialized countries.” He said the section on climate should refer to “climate change,” should reflect the principles of the UNFCCC and CBDR, and should not prejudge the outcomes of negotiations. He emphasized the need to commit to improving the sustainability of human settlements, but proposed to delete specific reference to “slums” and to promote integration between social groups and sustainable urban planning.

Norway, also for Denmark and Ireland, said priorities on cities and settlements include: intensifying work on slum dwellers; adequate and affordable housing; adequate basic services; safe, sustainable urban transport; efficient wastewater management; and urban planning for resilience. She said key elements on SCP include: sustainable public procurement; reporting on corporate social responsibility; sound management of chemicals and hazardous materials; and reduce, reuse, recycle. She said the SDGs should be “climate smart” by linking climate to development objectives, such as by increasing energy efficiency and phasing out fossil fuel subsidies, reducing the threat of air pollution, and enhancing access to sustainable urban transport.

Montenegro, also for Slovenia, called for improved road safety and urban air quality. He supported action on SCP, including through phasing out harmful chemicals, seeking alternatives, and reducing exposure to harmful products. He supported an emphasis on developing low-carbon technologies, especially in the energy sector.

France, also for Germany and Switzerland, supported, inter alia: enhancing the capacity of local governments to plan and implement urban policies through participative processes; improve living conditions and housing; improve air quality and reduce related diseases; increase resilience to climate change; reduce disaster risk; preserve and develop the capacity of soils to store carbon; create a circular economy; and raise awareness about SCP.

Trinidad and Tobago, for CARICOM, said targets should include eradication of slum conditions and improved access to safe and affordable transport. She supported a stand-alone goal on SCP, and suggested that MOI for climate change should include support for the implementation of national adaptation programmes of action.

Zambia, for Southern African States, supported a goal to “build resilience in order to withstand the impact of environmental changes.”

The UK, also for Australia and Netherlands, outlined targets relating to: management of chemicals and hazardous waste, efficient use of natural resources, sustainable supply chain management, natural resource exploitation, consumer awareness, road safety, resilience, and restricting global temperature rise to below 2°C. He said CBDR is only relevant to multilateral environmental agreements, not to the post-2015 development framework or SDGs.

Singapore, also for Cyprus and the United Arab Emirates, supported a goal on “decent, safe and affordable human settlements,” with targets on revitalizing historic districts and rehabilitating city centers. He observed “broad consensus” in the Group that climate change should be a cross-cutting issue.

Italy suggested a cities target to deploy sustainable building standards by 2018. Croatia, also for Bulgaria, said SCP should be integrated across other focus areas, and prioritized: raising awareness among enterprises and consumers; investing in energy efficiency and renewable energy; decreasing waste generation; improving recycling; eliminating market discrimination; creating procurement sustainability criteria; reducing waste in the supply chain; and promoting sustainable tourism. He also called for all goals to be climate-proof, and to address climate change and DRR across the framework.

Romania called for the universal character of SCP to be reflected in a cross-cutting manner. She said cities need to be part of both the vision and MOI for the SDGs, and that climate-related action should be actively embedded in several goals and targets.

Canada, also for Israel and the US, expressed attraction to a goal on cities, but did not want to create an artificial distinction between urban and rural societies. He expressed support for using the 10YFP to promote sustainable development, and proposed the following SCP targets under other goals: improving energy efficiency in building materials, under an energy goal; reducing, reusing, and recycling waste, under water or energy goals; focusing on sustainable supply chains, under a natural resources goal; and promoting sustainability information on products and services, under an MOI or global partnership goal.

Ecuador, also for Bolivia and Argentina, proposed, inter alia: education for sustainable development; promoting holistic economies, and technologies and practices in harmony with nature; targets on life cycles based on indicators identified at the national level; promoting demand for sustainable products through awareness raising on SCP in accordance with multilateral trade rules; promoting actions to prevent and reduce risk in the face of natural disasters and climate change; and enhancing the mechanisms on loss and damage as agreed by the UNFCCC in Warsaw.

Japan stressed the importance of cities and DRR, and emphasized the need for water management as well as wastewater management. He said he could support indicating that climate change poses a grave threat to development and poverty eradication, but would not support a stand-alone goal on climate change.

Niger emphasized that desertification and drought are linked to climate change and that combating them would have beneficial effects. Finland supported a transition to a green and inclusive economy, emphasized the need to build on the efforts of the 10YFP, and said SCP is universally vital and a prerequisite for sustainable development in all countries, but industrialized countries can show the way.

Maldives said loss and damage, adaptation and mitigation are equally important in formulating targets. He favored giving prominence to DRR, protecting carbon sinks, rejuvenating forests, and low-carbon development strategies.

Sweden proposed two climate-related targets focused on the poorest: integrate adaptation and emissions reduction into poverty plans and reduction strategies; and reduce poor people’s vulnerability and strengthen resilience. She favored a separate goal on sustainable management of natural resources and ecosystems. On SCP, she said developed countries should take the lead, and her government was prepared to do so.

Saudi Arabia said cities and SCP deserve to have stand-alone goals. On climate, the 2015 outcome under the UNFCCC must be respected, he said, and developed countries should take the lead on reducing emissions.

Palau, on cities, suggested highlighting safe walkways or sidewalks, and dance as a form of heritage to be safeguarded. On SCP, he suggested learning from those who have less, as they understand conservation and frugality. He stressed the need for “truthful” information and reporting on products and services.

Solomon Islands called for a goal on “healing the health of the planet.” He also emphasized the need for a climate goal on stabilizing global temperature increase to no more than 1.5°C. He proposed targets on: closing the pre-2020 mitigation gap; post-2030 mitigation; climate-proofing all infrastructure by 2020; and investment in ecofriendly industries and smallholder farmers.

Peru proposed sustainable cities and settlements targets on, inter alia: cities that comply with environmental quality standards; reducing waste generated by inhabitants; resilience plans; reducing urban sprawl; and provision of public space per inhabitant. He emphasized that climate targets must be compatible with those of the UNFCCC, and could include: keeping the global temperature under 2°C; increasing the percentage of countries with national DRR plans and strategies; and reducing the number of people affected by, and property loss due to, natural disasters.

Bangladesh supported a stand-alone goal on climate change, and said it is also a cross-cutting issue. He stressed that it is possible to identify climate change targets that enjoy a global consensus to “show the world that we care.” He also called for an SCP target on the reduction of waste in food production and consumption.

Papua New Guinea, on behalf of the PSIDS, Nauru, and Palau, said “sustainable development cannot occur in a world in which we are spending resources to prevent catastrophic climate change impacts.” He suggested climate change-related targets among all of the SDGs.

Indonesia said SCP should be implemented as a force for preparing ourselves for the post-2015 agenda, with developed countries taking the lead. SCP needs a technological revolution, he stressed, and developing countries need the means and tools to shift to more sustainable patterns of consumption and production.

Iran said SCP demands a stand-alone goal. He suggested moving education-related targets to the education focus area. On climate, he said the OWG should not preempt existing processes. Austria said the 10YFP is the principal framework for international cooperation on SCP. He called for avoiding duplication with the UNFCCC, and for mainstreaming climate-related targets into all other goals.

Greece emphasized, on cities, sustainable land planning and preserving urban and rural historical environments. On SCP, he proposed a target to address environmental impacts from consumption and production. On climate change, he suggested actively embedding actions in several goals and targets without interfering with UNFCCC negotiations.

Costa Rica said the common denominator among these issues is the need to strengthen resilience and strategies to reduce disaster risk. He called for improving living conditions in rural areas, highlighted internalizing negative externalities that stem from pollution, and said aspirations on climate must be reflected in the SDGs.

Ethiopia suggested a target to “ensure an ambitious and action-oriented commitment to limit global temperature rise to 2°C by taking into account adaptation, mitigation and loss and damage from climate change.”

Belgium said SCP is a universal challenge and opportunity that interlinks with many focal areas. He said climate change deserves a cross-cutting approach, by integrating the concept of low-carbon, resilience, and the 2°C objective throughout the framework, and by creating interlinkages with other focus areas, including energy efficiency, ecosystems, and coastal settlements.

India criticized the clustering of these three issues, saying their grouping was not justified. He said urbanization needs a differentiated, comprehensive approach, but that his delegation was not quite convinced of the need for an urban SDG. He agreed that climate change is a central issue that should be mainstreamed to address the drivers of the issue, rather than appear in a stand-alone goal. He reminded delegates that the 2°C goal and the climate commitments of countries are under review.

Pakistan said the focus on urbanization should be linked to rural development, rather than cities. He proposed climate change targets to: peak global carbon emissions by 2020, and stabilize the atmosphere by 2030; make sure the US$100 billion climate finance commitment is met, with 50% of resources going toward adaptation; and reduce global carbon intensity by 20% by 2030.

CONSERVATION AND SUSTAINABLE USE OF MARINE RESOURCES, OCEANS AND SEAS; AND ECOSYSTEMS AND BIODIVERSITY: On Thursday afternoon, Nauru, for AOSIS, said oceans and seas should be addressed in an SDG, with targets including: marine ecosystems are restored and safeguarded; fish stocks are maintained at healthy levels; area-based conservation measures, including marine protected areas (MPAs), are undertaken; all types of maritime uses are effectively managed and controlled; and the effects of climate change are effectively addressed.

Bolivia said efforts following up on the Rio+20 outcome related to marine biological diversity beyond areas of national jurisdiction (BBNJ) must not be duplicated, noted his commitment to achieving the three objectives of the Convention on Biological Diversity (CBD), and called on all parties to fully support implementation of the three Rio Conventions.

Barbados, for CARICOM, said ocean-related target priorities include: reduce marine pollution and debris including from land-based sources; address ocean acidification; strengthen resilience of coastal communities; strengthen regional cooperation for straddling fish stocks; eliminate harmful subsidies that contribute to overfishing; address IUU and destructive fishing practices; and build capacity and technology transfer to enable countries to realize the full benefits of resources within their exclusive economic zones.

Papua New Guinea, on behalf of PSIDS, Nauru, Palau and Timor Leste, supported a stand-alone goal on marine resources, oceans and seas, with targets including: by 2020, establish a system of MPAs within and beyond national jurisdiction; address ocean acidification; restore healthy, migratory and straddling fish stocks; manage bycatch and discards; eliminate harmful fishing subsidies; and create job opportunities in coastal and island communities while respecting sustainable development. He closed by stating that “it is time to marry Mother Earth with Father Ocean.”

Congo, on behalf of ten Congo Basin countries, supported a specific goal on sustainable management of forests with targets to: halve by 2015 and 2030 deforestation and degradation; improve use of wood through diversification of its uses; crack down on trafficking in protected species; and ensure protection of natural and cultural heritage.

Zambia, for Southern African States, outlined targets on: conservation and sustainable utilization of natural resources; reducing the rate of desertification and land degradation; promoting sustainable land use management; and enhancing protection of oceans, seas and marine resources.

Montenegro, also for Slovenia, highlighted unsustainable extraction of marine resources, MPAs, and efforts to decrease conflicts among the different uses of shore and sea. He suggested including genetic diversity of farmed and cultivated species under the sustainable agriculture, food security and nutrition goal. He proposed addressing invasive alien species within a water and sanitation goal.

Italy, also for Turkey and Spain, suggested a target on maintaining the capacity of oceans as healers, with specific emphasis on the role of SIDS. He also called for the strengthening of forest governance frameworks, and collectively aiming to halt global forest cover loss by 2030. He proposed that data be a general and cross-cutting issue across goals.

The US, also for Israel and Canada, expressed support for a well-crafted, transformative goal to protect the oceans, with target areas on: reduction of marine pollution and debris, including from land-based activities; establishment of MPAs and conservation of coastal and marine areas; and addressing IUU fishing. She called for a goal on sustainable management of natural resources with targets to: protect threatened species and halt the loss of biodiversity; reverse the loss of forest cover, sustainable forest management, and improved forest governance; prevent and reverse land degradation; and stop poaching and trafficking of protected species.

Peru, also for Mexico, suggested, inter alia: enhancing capabilities for artisanal fishing and tourism activities; the overall targets and goals must consider the elimination of trade and non-trade barriers; eliminating trade in protected species; and increasing the number of countries that have adopted sustainable forest management by 2030.

Poland, also for Romania, supported efforts to reduce marine pollution including from land-based activities, halting destruction of marine resources, eliminating subsidies that promote overcapacity in fishing, and protecting BBNJ. She also called for ensuring a land degradation neutral world, protecting threatened species, and ceasing poaching and trafficking of protected species.

China, also for Indonesia and Kazakhstan, said, in absence of an international agreement on MPAs, she would not want to include it in the SDGs, and noted that the UNGA has an ad hoc working group on BBNJ, so the issue should not be included in the SDGs.

The United Arab Emirates, also for Cyprus and Singapore, supported a goal on oceans and seas, and said references to sustainable tourism are more relevant in the ecosystems and biodiversity section.

Bulgaria, also for Croatia, called for a stand-alone goal on sustainable management of natural resources. She suggested targets on: reducing marine pollution; sustainable fisheries; regional and international governance of oceans and seas; sustainable forest management; awareness-raising for sustainable lifestyles; sustainable government procurement; and reporting of corporate social and environmental responsibility.

Nicaragua, also for Brazil, suggested promoting the sustainable use of marine resources “with due regard to the needs of developing countries.” He noted that there was no applicable regime for establishing MPAs in areas beyond national jurisdiction. He said a “land degradation neutral world” cannot be translated into targets and indicators, and that despite its inclusion in the Rio+20 outcome document, its feasibility has not been technically confirmed.

Norway, also for Denmark and Ireland, said targets should address: implementation of regional and international regimes governing oceans and seas; sustainable management of marine resources; marine pollution and debris; destruction of marine habitat including by acidification; and combating IUU and destructive fishing practices. On the other focus area, which she described as “land-based ecosystems,” she said targets must be actionable, like the Aichi biodiversity targets.

Guatemala called for targets to restore and safeguard ecosystems and biodiversity, restore forest areas, eliminate incentives harmful to biodiversity, prevent extinction of non-threatened species, and promote DRR in coastal areas. On marine areas, oceans, and seas, she suggested targets to: reduce marine pollution; protect marine habitats; and adopt sustainable agriculture for ocean and freshwater fishery practices.

Australia called for natural resource issues to be integrated across goals and targets, and to sustainably manage the earth’s biodiversity, natural resources, oceans, and seas. He suggested marine targets to: increase economic returns to LDCs and SIDS from the sustainable development of marine resources; ensure a certain percentage of resources are conserved; reduce pollution in ecosystems; restore fisheries; and eliminate harmful subsidies.

France, also for Germany and Switzerland, said these two focus areas are essential for the post-2015 development agenda and should be considered as goals. He called for targets on: restoring ecosystems, reducing loss of habitat, preventing deforestation, protecting coral reefs, sustainable fisheries, and marine pollution.

Ecuador, also for Argentina and Bolivia, reaffirmed the full validity of the sustainable approach of the UN Convention of the Law of the Sea. He suggested that a target on ocean acidification be considered in the context of climate change. He also emphasized that only subsidies that contribute to overfishing should be considered harmful.

Bhutan highlighted the need for goals and targets on forests and biodiversity, and suggested incorporating commitments from the MDGs and Aichi Targets. He said there seemed to be a convergence of views favoring overall goals on ecosystems and biodiversity. He welcomed measures on protecting mountain ecosystems.

Japan said establishment of MPAs should be based on scientific knowledge and findings. On ecosystems and biodiversity, he said it should be consistent with the CBD, including its Aichi targets. Croatia said he saw merit in a stand-alone goal on oceans and seas.

Bangladesh suggested re-clustering the targets as: promoting sustainable exploitation of marine resources; promoting sustainable use of marine fisheries and addressing all IUU fishing practices; protection of marine resources and establishment of MPAs; and addressing marine pollution, destruction of marine habitat and oceans acidification. On ecosystems and biodiversity, he favored targets on: protection of critical ecosystems; conservation and sustainable use of biodiversity; sustainable management of forests; sustainable utilization of genetic resources; and addressing land degradation and soil erosion, and promotion and protection of traditional knowledge and practices.

Cabo Verde supported targets to: establish and consolidate MPAs; end destruction of marine habitats; eliminate IUU fishing; end deforestation and land degradation and achieve a land degradation neutral world by 2030; boost capacities in scientific research; and promote inclusive partnerships for technology transfer.

Morocco suggested clarifying that the focus area on ecosystems and biodiversity also addresses land ecosystems.

Gabon supported an emphasis on species trafficking and a stand-alone goal on forests, and suggested calling the focus area “Ecosystems, Biodiversity, Forests and Mountains.”

Costa Rica noted the importance of marine areas and food security, and suggested enhancing the number and size of forest protected areas. Serbia said the title of focus area 17 should be “Environment, Ecosystems, and Biodiversity,” in order for environmental issues to be incorporated into this area, including the integration of multilateral environmental agreement commitments.

The Maldives called for oceans targets on: eliminating marine pollution; IUU fishing; rebuilding, restoring and maintaining marine ecosystems; ending perverse subsidies; promoting small-scale sustainable fisheries; and integrating appropriate MOI in regard to specific targets.

Greece proposed ocean and marine targets to: combat pollution and establish MPAs, including BBNJ; promote sustainable fisheries and aquaculture; combat overfishing and restore fish stocks; and welcome full implementation of the UN Convention of the Law of the Sea framework.

Austria highlighted protection of dolphins and whales, protection of mountain ecosystems, incorporating actions already agreed under the CBD and UN Convention to Combat Desertification, and ensuring access to genetic resources and the fair and equitable sharing of benefits. Belgium announced strong support for a stand-alone SDG on oceans, seas and fisheries. New Zealand said a stand-alone goal on oceans and seas would not overlap with the BBNJ process.

The International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN) favored a goal to “enhance the benefits for all from biodiversity and ecosystem services in a just world that values and conserves nature.” He supported targets on ecosystem maintenance and restoration, governance and sustainable use of natural resources, land degradation neutrality, and water access and availability.

Closing the day’s discussions, Co-Chair Kőrösi said he sensed a “very broad consensus” on the “would-be existence” of the two goals discussed in the afternoon session.

MEANS OF IMPLEMENTATION/GLOBAL PARTNERSHIP FOR SUSTAINABLE DEVELOPMENT: On Friday morning, Bolivia, for the G-77 and China, said meaningful goals cannot be formulated unless they address structural and international factors, and called for the fulfillment of ODA commitments, debt relief, capacity building, and technology transfer for developing countries. He highlighted the following priorities for MOI: avoid placing additional burdens on developing countries; enhance coherence and consistency of international trade and finance systems; recognize North-South cooperation as the main channel of global partnership; improve mechanisms for technology transfer; ensure that additional resources do not subtract from existing financial flows; and create adequate policy space and an enabling environment for integration into the global economy.

Tanzania, for the African Group, stressed that the MOI discussion should be integral to each focus area. He proposed a goal to “provide timely and effective development support to developing states,” with targets on fulfilling ODA commitments, eliminating barriers to remittance flows, transferring environmentally sound technologies to developing countries, ensuring that trade rules work for developing countries, debt sustainability, democratizing international institutions, and tracking existing international commitments.

Nauru, for AOSIS, said MOI should be attached to each goal. She suggested targets on: institutional capacity of developing countries in sustainable development planning, macroeconomic policy management, data collection and analysis, and mechanisms to monitor, evaluate and report on progress of SDG implementation.

Papua New Guinea, also for Nauru, Palau, the PSIDS and Timor-Leste, said MOI should not be a stand-alone goal but contained in every SDG, and should account for countries’ circumstances and vulnerabilities. He suggested an immediate overhaul to simplify procedures for accessing financing for development. He said the needed “genuine and durable partnership” is based on mutual trust, transparency and accountability.

Barbados, for CARICOM, said MOI should be both a stand-alone goal and an integral part of the discussion on all other areas. Possible action areas include: enhancing accountability in development cooperation, reducing remittance costs, and enhancing the participation of developing countries in international financial institutions.

Peru, also for Mexico, said the Third Conference on Financing for Development should provide the opportunity to achieve basic agreements to build a true global alliance for development. The Third SIDS Conference, now in the preparatory stage, should renew agreements and mobilize resources for development, and establish a development programme to be agreed in 2015 in line with the SDGs.

Slovenia, also for Montenegro, called for a focus on non-financial aspects, suggested promoting cooperation and access to science and technology, and indicated that CBDR does not extend to all issues in the post-2015 development agenda.

Benin, for the LDCs, stressed the importance of MOI for LDCs, and suggested targets to: double the share of LDCs’ exports by 2020 and triple them by 2030; enhance market access for LDCs’ products; build trade-related capacity; fulfill ODA commitments by 2020; and support domestic resource mobilization.

Brazil, also for Nicaragua, said MOI should be both cross-cutting and a stand-alone SDG. He called for an MOI section of targets under each SDG, addressing financing, capacity, institutional and data requirements for each goal, which he said would allow for a universal agenda that takes into account differentiated responsibilities and needs. He said some issues, such as access to justice and participatory decision-making, belong in an MOI goal, not in the security area.

Poland, also for Romania, said MOI should not be the main task of the OWG, as the Monterrey, Doha and ICESDF processes provide a basis for further discussion. She cautioned that CBDR is not to be applied beyond its original definition, noting that the principle provides for the engagement of all parties in their respective capabilities, which evolve over time.

Croatia, also for Bulgaria, suggested a role for the UN regional commissions in strengthening public-private partnerships. He asked the Group to “stay mindful” of the Monterrey/Doha process, ICESDF, Busan process, and Istanbul and Mexico conferences. He preferred to make advances on specific goals and targets before moving to their implementation, and favored a single goal on MOI.

Colombia, also for Guatemala, called for fewer goals and targets, since “we’re not negotiating a resolution or decision, but a tool.” She strongly supported MOI under each goal, as implementation will vary. She also stressed that “governments cannot do it alone,” called for an accountability framework, and said global public goods are at the core of a universal agenda. She suggested specific targets on technology facilitation, ODA, trade, global governance, the private sector and debt.

Zambia, for the LLDCs, said MOI should be part of each goal. He proposed a stand-alone goal to restructure and strengthen new global partnership for development. Targets could address: financial support, market access, trade, foreign direct investment and technical and capacity-building support for LLDCs, and South-South cooperation as complementary to North-South cooperation.

The Netherlands, also for Australia and the UK, emphasized that the SDGs will be a universal agenda with shared responsibilities, reflecting evolving national capabilities and the special needs of LDCs, SIDS and LLDCs. She called for a global partnership goal going beyond MDG 8 and multi-stakeholder partnerships to drive implementation. She also called for targets on transparency of governments and countries, efficiency of public spending, and combating corruption.

China, also for Indonesia and Kazakhstan, emphasized that MOI should cover macroeconomic issues, in addition to financial resources, technology transfer, and capacity building. She called for time-bound financing targets with the means to assist developing countries’ efforts. She also called for developed countries to scale up efforts, including ODA, and said a global partnership should be guided by intergovernmental cooperation, with other stakeholders being only complementary.

France, also for Germany and Switzerland, said that MDG 8 was too restrictive to keep up with the other MDGs, and that a “classic vision” of the global partnership for development is insufficient for a transformative agenda. He expressed support for a partnership to go beyond the North-South divide, and to be built on mutual and shared responsibilities. He proposed targets on: an open and rules-based trade system that is favorable for development; a regulated, stable, effective financial system; tax havens and illegal financing; safe and regulated migration; and rule of law and effective and transparent institutions.

Singapore, also for the United Arab Emirates and Cyprus, said MOI must include capacity for monitoring and reporting, including metrics recommended by the ICESDF. He said development effectiveness and accountability is necessary, and spoke of the need to mobilize domestic resources.

Viet Nam, also for Bhutan and Thailand, suggested that a goal on “Global partnership for sustainable development” should include targets on: developing an open, rules-based, stable, predictable, non-discriminatory trade and financial system; addressing the special needs of LDCs, LLDCs and SIDS; recommitting to fulfillment of ODA commitments on an agreed timetable; and building scientific capacity.

Italy, also for Spain and Turkey, supported, inter alia: promoting, at the international level, further progress on trade reforms in an open, rules-based trading system; a domestic and international enabling environment for more participation of the private sector; and corporate social responsibility.

Argentina, also for Bolivia and Ecuador, said there should be specific MOI identified for each SDG, and called for achieving voting parity within the IMF, restructuring of sovereign debt and support for a technology transfer mechanism.

Denmark, also for Ireland and Norway, urged developed countries to recommit to ODA targets, but said SDGs cannot be achieved without substantial additional financial resources. She called for reinforcing the trend of increasing domestic resource mobilization, addressing illicit financial flows, and preferential market access for LDCs. She said a broader set of stakeholders should be involved in designing specific MOI for each goal.

The US, also for Canada and Israel, said financing should be ambitious, in line with Monterrey and Doha, and comprehensive. On non-financial MOI, she highlighted cooperation for science and technology, connectivity, and access to knowledge and data. On the option to include MOI under every goal, she said that since actions will be context-specific, MOI defined ex ante may “get it wrong.” She also highlighted the importance of multi-stakeholder partnerships.

The Republic of Korea noted that some MOI are thematic (trade, debt, technology), while others are procedural (partnership, operation and monitoring), and he preferred a stand-alone goal on MOI to focus on the latter. He supported the UN, including the HLPF and Development Cooperation Forum, to serve as the global platform for monitoring. He also suggested a possible target on accountability in development cooperation.

Belarus suggested a stand-alone goal on “universal access to sustainable technologies.” MOI text should address all countries that need assistance, including middle-income countries, he said.

Japan said financing should be discussed in the ICESDF, but noted that private financing and foreign direct investment are key priorities. He disagreed with Member States that called for having MOI under each goal, stressing the importance of the interlinkages between goals and bottom-up approaches to implementation.

Iran said it is necessary to have a stand-alone goal on MOI, as well as a target under every focus area. He also proposed a goal on “establishing a facilitation mechanism for the transfer of clean and environmentally sound technologies.”

Morocco called for MOI to be integrated under each focus area. He proposed reaffirming ODA commitments, and monitoring fulfillment of commitments and MOI.

Egypt proposed improving the climate for trade for developing countries, making development assistance more effective and predictable, and monitoring the implementation of the global partnership and its targets.

Bangladesh said if we are to realize a global partnership, we need to consider how to leverage private sector engagement in developing countries, scale up innovative experiences, and ensure that all stakeholders conduct themselves responsibly.

India supported a stand-alone MOI goal as well as MOI targets under each goal, including on: capacity building; debt sustainability; reform of the intellectual property regime; reform of global economic governance; and affordable access to environmentally friendly technologies. He cited the capacity-building challenge for the data revolution, and suggested targets on mobilizing private sector financing.

Sweden said this is a universal agenda with common and shared responsibilities, and added that ODA will only meet part of the financing need. She suggested a free, open and rule-based multilateral trading system, and harnessing the effects of migration, including through attention to remittances and working conditions for migrants. She said it is not practical to build MOI into each target.

On MOI, Costa Rica called for highlighting transparency, impact evaluation and accountability of public spending. On global partnership, he wished to specify that relevant partners include civil society, academia, and research institutions.

Finland urged a multi-stakeholder approach to partnership, including governments, private sector, civil society and academia. She called for letting the ICESDF do its work, and suggested a joint meeting of the OWG and ICESDF in May. She said attaching MOI to every goal and target was not feasible.

Paraguay said explicit reference to MOI in each focus area would help elaborate the SDGs. He called for multiple financial sources to improve infrastructure in LLDCs and other vulnerable countries. On global partnership, he suggested reinforcing commitments to facilitate transit to and from LLDCs.

Lebanon called for promoting an enabling environment for entrepreneurship and investment, and also highlighted the need for investment in human capacity and training, informed decision-making and the science-policy interface. She called for a target that remittance transaction costs would decline to less than 5% of the global value of remittances by 2020.

Zambia, on behalf of Southern African States, said the mechanisms for MOI must be clear from their inception. He proposed targets to: provide timely financial and technical support; and establish new, innovative financial mechanisms and scale up existing ones. He called for new global partnerships that embrace fairness and mutual accountability.

PEACEFUL AND NON-VIOLENT SOCIETIES, RULE OF LAW AND GOVERNANCE: On Friday afternoon, Palau, on behalf of Nauru and Papua New Guinea, and also for the PSIDS and Timor-Leste, emphasized the need for a stand-alone goal on peaceful societies, and added that it could include cross-cutting targets on climate change.

The UK, also for the Netherlands and Australia, suggested targets addressing: levels of violence; effective and well-resourced justice institutions; accountability and professionalism of the police; numbers of internally displaced persons and refugees; illicit arms flows and trafficking; free and legal identity; freedom of speech and association; and bribery and corruption.

Barbados, for CARICOM, said targets could include: improving laws, policies and instruments to combat organized crime; ratification of the arms trade treaty; reduction of crime, violence and exploitation; and implementing policies and programmes to increase public participation in policy making.

Nicaragua, also for Brazil, said the issues that were identified as priorities in the Rio+20 outcome should be emphasized. He stressed that Rio+20 rests on the three pillars of sustainable development and that there is no agreement on a fourth pillar of peace and security. He said these issues would require a review of implementation of disarmament commitments by nuclear powers or in Palestine where he said agreements are selectively applied. On rule of law, he said this text should refer to more effective, representative, and accountable international institutions.

Denmark, also for Norway and Ireland, called for a goal on peaceful and non-violent societies, and a separate goal on rule of law and governance. Targets could include: reducing the number of violent deaths; fighting human trafficking and organized crime; ensuring access to justice and property rights; eliminating corruption; and curbing illicit financial flows.

Mexico, also for Peru, called for an agenda of universality, rather than an emphasis on specific countries or preconditions. Drawing attention to the issue of migrants, he called for an international and regional dialogue on the responsibilities of origin, transit, and destination countries to protect migrants’ human rights.

Slovenia, also on behalf of Montenegro, called for two separate goals for this cluster. He called for peace and security to be addressed broadly in the framework, covering all forms of violence, especially against women and children. He proposed tackling the root causes of forced migration, and protecting persons displaced by climate change and environmental destruction.

Thailand, also for Bhutan and Viet Nam, said now is the time to make rule of law, crime prevention and global governance a driving force toward sustainable development, noting that these issues support economic diversification and inclusion. He suggested additional targets on transnational organized crime and multi-stakeholder collaboration.

France, also for Germany and Switzerland, favored a goal on “governance, transparency and inclusive and effective and accountable institutions.” He proposed a second goal on “peaceful and non-violent societies,” with targets to eliminate violence, and address drug trafficking, human trafficking, small arms and light weapons, and internally displaced persons and refugees. He called for a robust follow-up and accountability mechanism and a central role for the HLPF.

Argentina, also for Bolivia and Ecuador, said these issues are cross-cutting. She suggested the framework could cover migration under poverty eradication, health, population, education, decent work and MOI. Inclusive and participatory decision-making and strengthening local governments can also be included elsewhere, she said.

The United Arab Emirates, also for Cyprus and Singapore, suggested a multi-pronged approach in which some issues could be treated as cross-cutting targets and others mainstreamed into different goals, while balanced by what governments can achieve at the national implementation level. He highlighted the central role of women in peacebuilding.

China, also for Kazakhstan and Indonesia, said all SDGs and targets must be closely linked to poverty eradication and development. Other fora exist for handling the issues in this cluster, she said; they should not be stand-alone goals, targets, nor included in the next draft text. Some of the issues could be merged into a narrative of the report, however. She added that rule of law is an internal matter and not goal-able, and said the following are not relevant to the SDG agenda: inclusive, participatory decision-making; strengthening local governments; strengthening civil society; and freedom of media, association and speech.

The US, also for Canada and Israel, called for a goal on “open, accountable, and effective institutions” and a goal on “peaceful and non-violent societies,” under the context of universality and shared challenges. On the latter, she suggested targets on: crime, violence, abuse, and exploitation, especially towards women and children; access to independent and effective justice and police systems; equal access to fair institutions; and organized crime. On rule of law and accountable, effective institutions, she proposed targets on: free and universal legal identity; increased participation in decision-making; freedom of the media, association, and speech; and transparency and accountability in public institutions.

Zambia highlighted support for rule of law. Guatemala, also for Colombia, supported enhancing rule of law at national and international levels, including through targets to combat international crime and transborder crime and promote access to justice.

Italy, also for Spain and Turkey, stressed protection of the most vulnerable groups, access for persons with disabilities, and policy coherence.

Liechtenstein supported the two focus areas on these issues, and said targets for peaceful societies, conflict and violence should include: organized crime, especially human, arms and drug trafficking; prevention of violent deaths and injuries; reduction of all forms and levels of corruption; and transparent and accountable institutions. On rule of law, he supported targets on: legal identity including universal birth registration; increasing the share of women and men with secure access to assets; and effective national judiciaries.

Timor-Leste noted her country’s experience and supported a focus area on peace and stability, with targets focused on capacity, accountability and inclusion, providing free and universal legal identity, decreasing the number of and finding durable solutions for internally displaced persons, and increasing opportunities to participate in dispute resolution mechanisms.

Sweden said conflict or post-conflict states have had the most difficulty meeting the MDGs, and that failure to include violence and conflict as a stand-alone goal would be a “missed opportunity.” She called for a second goal on democratic governance and the rule of law, citing the MY World survey data showing “honest and responsive governance” to be a top priority of the world’s citizens.

Cuba did not support the inclusion of goals on peaceful and non-violent societies of rule of law, stating that they should be dealt with by other aspects of the UN system. He called for the OWG to avoid peace and security discussions that “draw us away from the main targets of these discussions.”

Ethiopia said African Union decisions have noted the interdependence between development and security of people and states, and the African Common Position has made peace and security one of its six pillars. Peaceful, non-violent societies, rule of law and capable institutions should feature prominently in the SDGs, he said.

Finland said these issues merit two separate goals: “peaceful and non-violent societies,” and “democratic governance and rule of law.” On the latter, targets could include: effective, accountable and transparent institutions, including in public finance management; rule of law at all levels; provision of legal identity; fighting corruption; strengthening local governments and civil society; and freedom of media, association and speech.

Portugal said violence and conflict-affected states face the greatest constraints in meeting the SDGs, and thus compromise the common endeavor to leave no one behind. He recalled the results of the MY World survey, which identifies these issues among the top priorities. He supported two separate goals on the issues.

The Republic of Korea said these issues, whether contained in a stand-alone goal or mainstreamed, must be highlighted as core elements of sustainable development and the post-2015 development agenda. Targets could address access to public information, inclusive and participatory decision-making in political processes, and the strengthened role of civil society.

Romania, also for Poland, favored two separate focus areas. Targets on peaceful societies could address international organized crime, small arms, accountability of security institutions such as police, and violence against women, children and other vulnerable people. Targets under “good governance, rule of law, and capable institutions” could include free and fair elections.

Bulgaria, also for Croatia, preferred two stand-alone goals. Targets under good governance could address participation, transparency, and respect for human rights and rule of law. Targets under peaceful societies included: reducing violent deaths, education on a culture of non-violence, and strengthening rule of law at all levels. She also highlighted ending discrimination in public service delivery.

Japan said the SDGs should send a strong signal and include a goal on peaceful and nonviolent societies. Pakistan recognized where there is no peace there will be no development, but said there are already intergovernmental mechanisms to address peace. He said rule of law components should cut across the SDGs, and supported targets to ensure that: all citizens have access to justice; all countries have effective public prosecution systems; and the average duration of decisions on criminal cases is reduced.

Latvia supported two focus areas for these issues, along with targets for: freedom of speech, association and social media; inclusive and participatory decision making; participation of women; and locally tailored and inclusive governance.

Iran called for full adherence and respect of the UN charter principles, and anticipated difficulties in agreeing on methodologies to monitor the issues in this cluster.

The Russian Federation said the SDGs should not go beyond the framework of political agreements reached at Rio+20, stressing that peaceful and nonviolent societies and peacebuilding do not fall under this scope. On rule of law, he stressed that there is no common stance among Member States and that it is impossible to create indicators. He cautioned against a broad interpretation of sustainable development that includes peace and security and rule of law, which he said are “not likely to facilitate achieving consensus.”

Bangladesh cautioned against the “securitization of the development approach,” and urged a balanced narrative on the enablers of development, spread over aggregate goals.

Costa Rica called for a goal on “open, non-violent, and inclusive societies, based on respect for all human rights, including the right to development promoting participation in decision-making,” with targets on access to justice, and participation in public debate, political activities, and decision-making.

Estonia called for the inclusion of both “peaceful and non-violent societies” and “democracy and rule of law” in the framework, and expressed her support for all targets in the document, especially the one against violence.

Greece said that these issues should be considered as two distinct focus areas, and highlighted the importance of: reducing crime and violence in societies; fighting human trafficking; and promoting good governance with public participation in political decision-making.

India argued that the Group’s work is clearly framed by the three dimensions of sustainable development, and he would not support “any presumptive fourth pillar.” He said the OWG should focus on how development leads to peace, not how peace can lead to development. He said rule of law, capable institutions and governance can be incorporated under other goals and as MOI. Finally, he observed irony in some states’ pursuit of governance at the national level even while they are compromised at the global level and within the UN.

South Africa said countries cannot develop their economies if scarce resources are invested in conflict. In addition, peace and security are used as conditionalities in some cases. He said the issues should be part of a narrative that introduces the goals.

Austria supported two distinct areas on: peaceful, non-violent and stable societies; and governance, transparency and accountability of democratic, inclusive and effective institutions. They should make explicit mention of human rights action areas and target the external stresses that generate violence. New Zealand seconded Timor-Leste’s approach to stable societies and capable institutions, and proposed an additional target to track inequalities using improved data collection, according to gender, location, age, wealth, ethnicity and disability.

Palestine suggested a target on ending impunity for serious international crimes and noted that it has just submitted letters of accession to several international treaties and conventions.


On Wednesday afternoon, Co-Chair Kőrösi opened the meeting with Major Groups, stressing, “It is time to translate vision into manageable, very concrete goals and targets.”

On peaceful and non-violent societies, rule of law and capable institutions, Youth for Unity said this topic should be reflected in two separate focus areas, with an additional stand-alone goal on governance. Targets could address: conflicts based on resource extraction, inclusive decision-making through disaggregated data and public access to environmental oversight, and promoting integrity in government, the private sector and international financial institutions.

On means of implementation/global partnership for sustainable development, Third World Network said the public sector should be at the center of sustainable development financing. She said CBDR applies to MOI throughout the framework, and not just on the issue of climate policy. She also highlighted the need to subject investors to internationally binding norms and standards, and independent assessment and monitoring of technologies.

On conservation and sustainable use of marine resources, oceans and seas, High Seas Alliance stressed the need for a stand-alone goal on oceans and seas, with particular reference to ocean-related gender equality and civil rights. Proposed targets included sustainable fish-stocks, restoring damaged habitats, integrating ocean use plans, eliminating illegal fishing, and ocean pollution.

On ecosystems and biodiversity, the Forest Stewardship Council called for specific targets ensuring respect for those most affected by the degradation of ecosystems. He also called for targets related to forests and agriculture, as well as including SCP ideas across targets.

On sustainable cities and human settlements, Network of Regional Governments for Sustainable Development (NRG4SD) called for targets on sustainable cities and human settlements to include: adequate, affordable, equitable, accessible infrastructure for all; economic and social links between cities and social areas; sustainable transport; and protecting biodiversity.

On SCP, the Women’s Environment and Development Organization said all targets must have SCP at their core, and include: eliminating all harmful chemicals; education programmes; sustainable public procurement; eco-efficiency and zero waste; and the efficient use of natural resources.

On climate, IBON proposed targets to: ensure GHG emissions peak before 2020 and then rapidly decline; ensure effective disbursement of climate finance; promote DRR; and ensure the participation of marginalized communities.

On economic growth, the Global Business Alliance expressed concern with all of the focus areas, since “without us, to be frank, none of these will be able to deliver.” He called for collaboration between business, local authorities and other stakeholders, stressed formalizing the informal economy, and said infrastructure includes management and knowledge of technologies.

On industrialization, Third World Network proposed targets on sustainable industrial development, economic diversification, technical capacity, and a code of conduct for transnational corporations.

On infrastructure, Etc. Group suggested eliminating this focus area, finding cost savings by cutting back in the carbon fuel industry, and creating a mechanism for technology facilitation and assessment.

On energy, Reacción Climática supported both stand-alone and cross-cutting goals and targets on energy. She suggested clarifying the meaning of “modern sources of energy” and to apply the precautionary principle to ensure safe, renewable and environmentally friendly energy. She called for prioritizing decentralized and democratically controlled energy.

On water and sanitation, the Mining Working Group suggested targets on, inter alia: zero dumping of toxics and pollution in water; zero freshwater extraction beyond sustainable supply; zero open defecation; promotion of 100% wastewater treatment; and promotion of effective water governance.

On sustainable agriculture, food security, and nutrition, the World Society for the Protection of Animals and the Food and Agriculture Cluster suggested targets to halve the global rate of food loss and waste and to ensure markets are functioning and accessible for all, among others.

On gender equality and women’s empowerment, Gender Leadership and Social Sustainability Research said wealth must be sustainably distributed, and proposed targets to: reduce and redistribute unpaid care work; achieve universal sexual and reproductive rights; eliminate all forms of discrimination based on gender; and mobilize financial resources with increased gender priority.

On education, Education International suggested targets to ensure that, by 2030, every child has access to a full cycle of basic education, from early elementary to upper secondary, all teachers are well-trained, and all schools teach global citizenship.

On employment and decent work for all, the Feminist Task Force called for a stand-alone goal on full and productive employment and decent work for all, and a separate goal on universal social protection. She called for targets on ensuring decent working conditions; introducing a minimum living wage; guaranteeing income security and social services during childhood; and reducing the number of working poor.

On health and population dynamics, the International Women’s Health Coalition proposed a stand-alone goal on the achievement of healthy lives, grounded in human rights, sexual and reproductive rights, and providing services to the most marginalized groups. She called for targets on: universal healthcare and coverage; ending preventable newborn and child deaths; universal access to sexual and reproductive healthcare services; and reducing the burden of NCDs.

On poverty eradication and promote inequality, the ATD 4th World Network called for a stand-alone goal on poverty eradication to express the multidimensional nature of poverty and to serve as an overarching objective for the entire agenda. He called for inequality to be mainstreamed and for a stand-alone goal on promoting equality, with targets on empowering and fostering meaningful participation of the most marginalized groups and decreasing national income inequality.

The Women’s Major Group stressed the need for the SDGs to be written in new language, to “allow reality to follow imagination.” She called for a stand-alone goal and cross-cutting elements for women’s human rights, and for focusing language on sustainable development, rather than on economic growth.

Children and Youth proposed: a target on reducing the number of children who live in households below the national poverty line; a target on universal access to evidence-based sexuality education; absolute, not relative, decoupling of economic growth from environmental footprint; a stand-alone goal on governance; and eliminating violence against children.

Indigenous Peoples said an education goal should have a target on cultural rights and heritage, and suggested employment targets to protect traditional occupations and livelihoods. He also suggested supporting community-based, small-scale, decentralized energy systems. On climate change, he advocated a stand-alone goal and interlinkages.

NGOs said the poverty eradication goal should guarantee everyone a minimum level of wellbeing. She called for ending extreme economic inequality between and within countries and for a rights-based approach to all targets, including by making food sovereignty a right. She added that the focus area on water and sanitation must include targets on hygiene.

Local Authorities highlighted the need to localize the agenda and involve local governments in implementing and monitoring the SDGs.

Workers and Trade Unions said a stand-alone goal on employment is needed and highlighted, inter alia, promoting minimum living wages, recognizing the rights of all women, and protecting the rights to social dialogue, organize and collectively bargain.

Business and Industry supported effective governance and the rule of law and functional legal systems, and said success will only be realized through linkages between means of implementation and other areas, grounded in good governance.

On behalf of Aging Peoples, Helen Hamlin noted that she is 91 years old and said the post-2015 framework must support a society for all ages, noting “we are all aging.” She called for disaggregated data to allow an understanding of the age structure of societies, and supported goals related to health, gender and food security.


During the closing discussion on “the way forward,” on Friday evening, Co-Chair Kamau noted that the Group had discussed an incredible number of ideas over five days. He said narrowing them down is not going to be an easy process, but that it is the challenge that UN Member States set for themselves at Rio+20, and it is doable if the Group remains committed to the objective.

According to the their proposal for the remaining three meetings of the OWG, the Co-Chairs will revise the focus areas document based on the discussions at OWG-10, and issue another version on 18 April 2014. He said at OWG-12 in June, the Group will consider another revised Co-Chairs’ document, which he hoped would spell out goals and targets. At that point, he said the process would be driven by the document itself.

The time is not yet ripe for negotiating language, he said, as the OWG needs to further refine the goals and targets before discussing their specifics. He encouraged the Group to not get stuck in 19th and 20th century development issues, but to keep 21st century issues such as climate change, cities, and inequality high on the agenda.

Member States responded with questions on: translation of the documents; the nature of OWG “consultations” or more formal negotiations; whether the document will include a narrative or chapeau; the means for adopting the final goals and targets; and the timing of the release of future documents.

Kamau confirmed that the document will be adopted by consensus and that at some point negotiations will take place, but he expressed hope that the proposed iterative process would build comfort with each successive draft. He said that, when there are areas that are complex, the Group will have to decide whether to work it out or leave it for another process. He said the Co-Chairs expect there will be a narrative, but that they would not be able to deliver a draft until the June meeting. Co-Chair Kamau closed OWG-10 at 7:25 pm.



The new development goals must be tweetable. They must be understood by ministers, mothers, capitals, youth, local governments, and citizens around the world. School age children should be able to recite them. At the same time, the SDGs could be a tool for launching a truly major transformation—globally. These are among the many demands that that OWG delegates have placed on the SDGs framework, and which governments are fervently trying to realize by the deadline for their report to the UN General Assembly in July 2014.

During OWG-10, governments and civil society, both inside and outside UN Headquarters in New York, focused on the discussions of the OWG as it continued its consideration of what should be included in a global set of SDGs. Whether through the online webcast, the delegates in the crowded meeting room, or the tweets of many following the discussions, the 10th session of the OWG was broadcast to the world. As many delegates remarked throughout the meeting, this is exactly what must happen to the adopted SDGs, although on a much larger scale. Each and every goal must be short, clear and understandable—“tweetable”—in order to be widely communicated to and inspire action by the global public.

The attention on OWG-10 reflected the SDGs’ role in shaping a universal sustainable development agenda, but as the discussions moved further into the details of targeted actions governments and Major Groups would like the new agenda to entail, some expressed concern about the ease with which the global community of over 190 states will be able to narrow down the now well over 300 targets that have been identified into a coherent, action agenda. The tweets coming out of the OWG provide prompts for this brief analysis of OWG-10, and its role in the effort to develop SDGs.


The Co-Chairs opened OWG-10 with a review of the scope, purpose and design of the SDGs and targets. According to the Co-Chairs’ guidance, the SDGs should integrate the unfinished business of the MDGs, address the three dimensions of sustainable development as framed by the Rio+20 outcome document, and contribute to the global response to emerging issues related to sustainable development. Delegates were reminded that the SDGs have an important past, but they should also incorporate a vision of the future. Observers noted that a tension between falling back on previously agreed language and striving to push further ahead is a feature of every sustainable development negotiation. But Co-Chair Kamau pressed governments before adjourning on Friday to prioritize 21st century challenges such as climate change, cities, ecosystems, governance and inequality, no matter how politically difficult, and not to focus too exclusively on issues from the development agendas of the 19th and 20th centuries. “For us to remain credible, we cannot turn our backs on these issues,” he concluded.

Although some expressed frustration with limits that some speakers sought to place on the goals, others remarked that the sheer volume and breadth of proposals for targets reflect the SDGs’ potential value. Targets ranging from updated MDG objectives to eliminate extreme poverty, to increased birth registration, universal breastfeeding, support for museum collections, and promoting city sidewalks were proposed in the OWG’s first real dive into the possible targets.

At the close of the session, some delegates expressed renewed enthusiasm for the possibilities for the SDG framework to bring about meaningful change. However, many were exhausted from trying to absorb the hundreds for targets discussed during OWG-10, and from thinking about their upcoming task to prioritize and translate the these proposed targets into a “tweetable” and actionable agenda.


In addition to proposing targets, throughout their discussion of the 19 focus areas, governments outlined topics that should constitute goals—the “headlines” of the SDGs, as the US delegate called them. In some areas—poverty eradication, health, gender equality and education—many seemed to agree on the value of a stand-alone goal. 

The discussion on poverty eradication, for example, provided a glimpse of how the Group’s thinking has evolved since its first discussion on the topic, during OWG-2 in April 2013. At that meeting, governments did not go much further than highlighting the complexity of actions that would be needed to reduce poverty, and made broad recommendations for a future goal to include, for example, “focused policy and programme interventions and empowerment of people.” After a year of stock-taking, some delegates came prepared with proposals for detailed targets including percentages, rates and timetables. Specific targets were suggested for achievement by 2030, including to halve the intensity of poverty and those vulnerable to extreme poverty, and to increase the proportion of people that are food secure.

Despite growing consensus on some issues, most of the goal “headlines” are still up for discussion, while the proposed targets for implementing them will require further discussion and elaboration. In particular, in the areas described by Co-Chair Kamau as “post-MDG” and “21st century” development issues, observers noted that much more work remains to be done. Some pointed out that the discussion on the cluster “Conservation and sustainable use of marine resources, oceans and seas; Ecosystems and biodiversity” was wide-ranging and will need further discussion and prioritization among the possible elements to be addressed as targets. And while several governments added their support for a stand-alone goal on oceans, which would separate this cluster into two goals, the proposed targets suggested under this area, according to many observers, need further prioritization and specification.

Others emphasized that fundamental differences of approach remain on other areas and even in regard to whether some of the focus areas belong in the SDG framework itself. In particular, the discussion on the cluster of peaceful and non-violent societies, rule of law and governance revealed significantly diverging opinions among Member States. While many said they would like to see this cluster constituting two goals based on their assessment that they are important precursors for social and economic development, others said they would not support incorporating “peaceful and non-violent societies” concepts into the framework because the Group’s focus is on development’s contributions to peace, and not the reverse. Some who objected to a peace and non-violence goal indicated they would support weaving rule of law concepts into other goals, but not as a stand-alone goal itself. 


As the OWG looks ahead to its final three sessions—15 days of meeting time—the experience of OWG-10 demonstrated the enormity of the task of elaborating the goals and targets. Governments may have focused on a new level of detail with their presentations on possible targets, but they had to focus even more to keep track of emerging areas of consensus and OWG constituent groups’ alignment with the various proposals. During the upcoming sessions, the OWG discussions (and tweets) are expected to shift from the identification of individual positions to issues on which all can agree. But given the large number of possible targets presented during OWG-10, and their varying levels of specificity, how will the governments achieve their goal of adopting a limited set of SDGs that can be easily communicated to the world?

The conference room was crowded and buzzing on Friday afternoon, as delegates returned from bilateral negotiations in the corridors—and had to be quieted by the Co-Chairs—to hear the proposed way forward. Those expecting a dramatic shift to text-based negotiations at the next OWG session were disappointed, however, as Co-Chair Kamau presented a programme of work for the next three sessions that focuses on further, iterative “consultations” on the focus areas. Some observers noted that, while the year-long stocktaking exercise might have suggested that the time would now be ripe to begin negotiating goals, the OWG’s first close look at targets revealed that a draft negotiating text may still be a few stages away.

Some pointed to many UN Member States’ expression of support and gratitude for OWG Co-Chairs Kamau and Kőrösi as a sign of support for the way forward. Observers noted that it is the Co-Chairs’ burden to guide the governments to swift and meaningful agreement on SDGs, despite being bound by a tight timetable, a bitterly-negotiated mandate, a responsibility to the world, and just 140 “tweetable” character messages to convey the essence of each goal. Regardless of what happens at the last three OWG sessions, the world will be watching…and tweeting.


UNGA Thematic Debate: Role of partnerships and their contributions to the post-2015 development agenda: This event is part of a series convened by the President of the UN General Assembly under the theme, “The post-2015 Development Agenda: Setting the Stage!” The objective is to generate concrete contributions to the formulation of the SDGs. dates: 9-10 April 2014  location: UN Headquarters, New York  contact: Office of President of the General Assembly  www:

First High-Level Meeting of the Global Partnership for Effective Development Cooperation: The Global Partnership works to complement existing efforts that have an impact on effective development cooperation, including the UN Development Cooperation Forum, the Development Working Group of the G20 and the UN-led process for a post-2015 development agenda. dates: 15-16 April 2014  location: Mexico City, Mexico  contact: Derek Kilner, UNDP  phone: +1-212-906-5742  email: [email protected]  www:

UNGA Thematic Debate: Ensuring Peaceful and Stable Societies: This event is part of a series convened by the President of the UN General Assembly under the theme, “The post-2015 Development Agenda: Setting the Stage!” The objective is to generate concrete contributions to the formulation of the SDGs. dates: 24-25 April 2014  location: UN Headquarters, New York  contact: Office of President of the General Assembly  www:

OWG-11: The OWG will continue its consideration of sustainable development goals, targets and indicators. dates: 5-9 May 2014  location: UN Headquarters, New York  contact: UN Division for Sustainable Development  phone: +1-212-963-8102  fax: +1-212-963-4260  email: [email protected]  www:

Fourth Session of Intergovernmental Committee of Experts on Sustainable Development Financing: The fourth session of the Intergovernmental Committee of Experts on Sustainable Development Financing is scheduled in May 2014. dates: 12-16 May 2014  location: UN Headquarters,New York  contact: UN Division for Sustainable Development  phone: +1-212-963-8102  fax: +1-212-963-4260  email: [email protected]  www:

UNGA High-level Event: Contributions of South-South, North-South and triangular cooperation and information and communication technologies for development to the post-2015 development agenda: This event is part of a series convened by the President of the UN General Assembly under the theme, “The post-2015 Development Agenda: Setting the Stage!” The objective is to generate concrete contributions to the formulation of the SDGs.  dates: 21-22 May  location: UN Headquarters, New York  contact: Office of President of the General Assembly  www:

UNGA High-level Event: Human rights and the rule of law in the post-2015 development agenda: This event is part of a series convened by the President of the UN General Assembly under the theme, “The post-2015 Development Agenda: Setting the Stage!” The objective is to generate concrete contributions to the formulation of the SDGs.  dates: 9-10 June 2014  location: UN Headquarters, New York  contact: Office of President of the General Assembly  www:

OWG-12: The OWG will continue its consideration of sustainable development goals, targets and indicators. dates: 16-20 June 2014  location: UN Headquarters, New York  contact: UN Division for Sustainable Development  phone: +1-212-963-8102  fax: +1-212-963-4260  email: [email protected]  www:

UN Environmental Assembly of UNEP: The first meeting of the UN Environmental Assembly (UNEA) of the United Nations Environment Programme is expected to include ministerial plenaries on the SDGs and post-2015 development agenda and illegal trade in wildlife and timber. dates: 23-27 June 2014  location: Nairobi, Kenya  contact: Jiří Hlaváček, Secretary of Governing Bodies, UNEP  phone: +254-20-7623431  email: u[email protected]  www:

High Level Political Forum: The second meeting of the High-level Political Forum on sustainable development will take place in conjunction with 2014 substantive session of the UN Economic and Social Council (ECOSOC). The theme for the Forum for 2014 will be “Achieving the Millennium Development Goals and charting the way for an ambitious post-2015 development agenda, including the sustainable development goals.”  dates: 30 June - 9 July 2014  location: UN Headquarters, New York  contact: UN Division for Sustainable Development  phone: +1-212-963-8102  fax: +1-212-963-4260  email: [email protected]  www:

OWG-13: The OWG will continue its consideration of sustainable development goals, targets and indicators. dates: 14-18 July 2014  location: UN Headquarters, New York  contact: UN Division for Sustainable Development  phone: +1-212-963-8102  fax: +1-212-963-4260  email: d[email protected]  www:

Fifth Session of Intergovernmental Committee of Experts on Sustainable Development Financing: The fifth session of the Intergovernmental Committee of Experts on Sustainable Development Financing is scheduled in August 2014. dates: 4-8 August 2014  location: UN Headquarters, New York  contact: UN Division for Sustainable Development  fax: +1-212-963-4260  email: [email protected]  www:

Third UN Conference on Small Island Developing States (SIDS): The Third UN Conference on SIDS will focus on the theme ‘Sustainable Development of SIDS through Genuine and Durable Partnerships. dates: 1-4 September 2014  location: Apia, Samoa  www:

UN Climate Summit: UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon will convene the Summit with the aim of mobilizing political will for a universal and legally-binding comprehensive climate agreement in 2015. date: 23 September 2014  location: UN Headquarters, New York  www:

Special Session to Follow Up on the Programme of Action from ICPD: An eight-hour Special Session to Follow Up on the Programme of Action from the International Conference on Population and Development (ICPD) is being organized to coincide with the high-level segment of the general debate at the UN General Assembly. date: 22 September 2014  location: UN Headquarters, New York  contact: Mandy Kibel, UNFPA  phone: 1-212-297-5293  email: [email protected] www:

World Conference on Indigenous Peoples: The World Conference on Indigenous Peoples 2014 will be organized as a high-level plenary meeting of the 69th session of the UN General Assembly and supported by the UN Permanent Forum on Indigenous Issues, to share perspectives and best practices on the realization of the rights of indigenous peoples and to pursue the objectives of the United Nations Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples.  dates: 22-23 September 2014  location: UN Headquarters, New York  contact: Nilla Bernardi  phone: +1 212-963-8379  email: [email protected] www:

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