Philippines and UN Launch $211M Partnership for Sustainable Development

The Philippine government and UN launch a strategic partnership to achieve Sustainable Development Goals and implement the Philippine Development Plan 2023-2028. The partnership's joint budget for 2024 is $211 million, aiming to maximize impact and create a harmonious approach to sustainable development.

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Aqsa Younas Rana
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Philippines and UN Launch $211M Partnership for Sustainable Development

Philippines and UN Launch $211M Partnership for Sustainable Development

The Philippine government and the United Nations (UN) in the Philippines have launched a strategic partnership to achieve the UN's Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) and implement the Philippine Development Plan (PDP) 2023-2028. The partnership, outlined in the 2024-2028 UN Sustainable Development Cooperation Framework (UNSDCF), aims to maximize impact and create a harmonious approach to sustainable development.

Why this matters: This partnership has significant implications for the Philippines' efforts to achieve upper-middle income status and implement its national development plan, which can have a ripple effect on the country's economy and citizens' well-being. The success of this partnership can also serve as a model for other countries seeking to achieve sustainable development goals.

The inaugural meeting of the Joint Steering Committee (JSC) on the UNSDCF was held on May 3 at the National Economic and Development Authority (Neda) Central Office. The meeting brought together key stakeholders, including the Philippine government and the UN, represented by Neda and the Department of Foreign Affairs (DFA). The Terms of Reference (ToR) approved during the meeting outline the cooperation between the Philippine government and the UN under the new partnership.

Secretary Arsenio Balisacan emphasized the complementary nature of the UNSDCF and the PDP 2023-2028, stating, "The UNSDCF complements our national development plan, serving as a guiding framework that fosters synergy with the international community. By crafting the UNSDCF collaboratively, the government and the UN aim to maximize impact and create a harmonious approach to sustainable development."

The JSC endorsed key documents from the Cooperation Framework and reviewed the current UN portfolio in the Philippines, focusing on human capital development, sustainable economic development, and climate action. The UN Philippines presented an overview of resource requirements for the next four years, with a joint work plan for 2024 carrying an estimated budget of $211 million.

Foreign Secretary Enrique Manalo expressed optimism about the partnership, saying, "We can all look forward to reaping the benefits of a partnership with the UN that is characterized by Philippine ownership of the process, greater transparency, as well as targeted programs and deliverables tailor-made for us to enjoy the benefits of the reformed United Nations development system."

UN Resident Coordinator in the Philippines Gustavo Gonzalez highlighted the innovative nature of the partnership, stating, "The CF marks the start of a new generation of UN-Government cooperation instruments, and with this change, we are innovating ways to enhance our collaborative work with the Philippine government as we shift from traditional development assistance to transformative strategic partnerships for policy and capacity development, knowledge generation and the leveraging of financial resources."

The UNSDCF recognizes the Philippines' localization agenda of the SDGs and its transition toward achieving upper-middle income status. Resources will be allocated to capacity development, technical assistance, policy advice, thought leadership, partnerships, and knowledge sharing. The JSC serves as the main governing body of the UNSDCF and provides strategic direction and oversight for UN support in the country towards joint development priorities outlined in the Cooperation Framework.

The UNSDCF was signed on October 24, 2023, by the Philippine government and the United Nations in the Philippines. The strategic partnership between the two entities, with a joint budget of $211 million for 2024, marks a significant step towards achieving sustainable development goals and implementing the Philippine Development Plan 2023-2028.

Key Takeaways

  • Philippine government and UN launch strategic partnership to achieve SDGs and implement PDP 2023-2028.
  • Partnership aims to maximize impact and create harmonious approach to sustainable development.
  • Joint Steering Committee established to oversee partnership and allocate $211 million budget for 2024.
  • Partnership focuses on human capital development, sustainable economic development, and climate action.
  • Success of partnership can serve as model for other countries seeking to achieve sustainable development goals.