Heads of United Nations regional commissions supported “People First” public-private partnerships (PPPs) at the United Nations Economic Commission for Europe’s (UN) Fourth International Forum on PPPs. The Forum presented approaches that focus on people-centered public-private partnerships, including the implementation of the Sustainable Development Goals.
The UNECE Center for International Excellence on PPPs hosted the forum in cooperation with the United Nations Economic Commission for Africa (UNECA). More than 300 participants from 80 countries and representatives of the United Nations system, United Nations regional commissions and multilateral development banks attended the forum held from 7 to 9 May 2019 in Geneva, Switzerland. The forum focused on the theme “The Last Kilometer: Promoting People-Centered PPPs First for the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development”.
The five heads of the United Nations regional commissions expressed their support for a people-centered approach to public-private partnerships, a broader concept of PPPs that goes beyond value for money for people. This approach focuses on five outcomes: increased access and equity; reproducibility; sustainability and resilience; economic efficiency; and stakeholder engagement. At the end of 2018, UNECE launched an appeal for people-first PPPs following the meetings of the UNECE Working Party on PPPs.
UNECE Executive Secretary Olga Algayerova welcomed this joint initiative. She said the people-centered approach, a priority first and foremost, was essential to mobilize the private sector in support of the Sustainable Development Goals. She said Europe could learn from other regions and other emerging PPP models elsewhere. Algayerova also acknowledged the problem of corruption in previous PPP models, noting that the UNECE had given priority to the fight against corruption in its “Standard for zero tolerance approach to corruption in PPP procurement”. “.
ECA Executive Secretary Vera Songwe said the private sector can play an important role in Africa’s growth and poverty reduction, given the difficulties faced by African governments in financing the SDGs. Songwe also called for caution, noting that the P3 landscape is “not well defined” and recommended defining PPPs, strengthening the government’s capacity to establish PPP projects, and exercising caution in this regard. regarding subsidies and tax adequacy. She welcomed the opportunity to promote the public-private partnership model with other regional commissions in order to adapt it “perfectly to the purpose of the 2030 Agenda”.
The Executive Secretary of the United Nations Economic and Social Commission for Western Asia (ESCWA), Rola Dashti, emphasized the importance of including stakeholders in PPPs. Speaking in Santiago, Chile, the representative of the United Nations Economic Commission for Latin America and the Caribbean (ECLAC) expressed ECLAC’s full support for the results “Priority for Men”, highlighting the means by which PPPs can promote women’s empowerment. She called for an increased role for women in decision-making on PPP projects, a stronger role for women in project design and the inclusion of women-led enterprises in supply chains.
Also during the forum, the UNECE presented its standards on PPPs in railways, roads and renewable energies, which aim to guide governments in the design and implementation of PPPs in these three sectors. and to ensure that these PPPs contribute to the achievement of the SDGs. People first.
The regional commissions have also developed an impact assessment tool to evaluate projects against the sustainable development goals and expected results of people. The tool is intended to help evaluate current project projects as they: improve access and equity to essential services tailored to the needs of people throughout their life cycle, particularly the needs of vulnerable groups; have high economic efficiency, transformational impact and contribute to the sustainability of public finances; are reproducible; reduce carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions, making infrastructures more resilient; and engage effectively with all stakeholders.
Source: SDG Knowledge Hub.