The fifth session of the African Regional Forum on Sustainable Development (ARFSD 5) explored more effective ways of raising capital to contribute to the achievement of the SDGs in Africa, knowing that achieving them will require more than $ 600 billion per year. The Forum concluded with the adoption of the Marrakesh Declaration, which will be presented to the United Nations High-Level Political Forum on Sustainable Development (HLPF).
The Forum met in Marrakech, Morocco, from 16 to 18 April 2019, on the theme “Empowerment of people and guarantee of inclusion and equality”. It brought together more than 800 participants to discuss the implementation of the African Union (AU) SDGs and Agenda 206. included a high-level group focused on the theme of ARFSD, a session on regional and subregional support and progress in the implementation of Agenda 2030 and Agenda 2063 for Africa, as well as a round table on voluntary national examinations and peers. learning about implementing, monitoring and revising agendas.
The July 2019 session of the HLPF will include an in-depth review of several Sustainable Development Goals, and parallel sessions during DARFSD considered Africa’s contribution to:
SDG 4 (quality education) and the need to include sustainable development in school curricula and to improve teaching materials and methods for children with special needs;
SDG 8 (decent work and economic growth) and the need to recognize the contribution of the informal sector and increased collaboration with the private sector in targeted employment training;
SDG 10 (reduction of inequalities), warning against the inequalities caused by caste systems that encourage modern forms of slavery and recommends the establishment of hygiene facilities to improve girls’ school attendance;
SDG 16 (peace, justice and strong institutions), and recommending conflict resolution through dialogue and greater involvement of human rights organizations;
SDG 13 (climate action) and fund raising for climate resilient policies; and
SDG 17 (Partnerships for Goals) and recommendations to remove trade barriers in Africa and to ratify the African Continental Free Trade Area.
The declaration of the forum asks in particular:
Strengthen South-South cooperation and experience-sharing to address challenges and forge multi-stakeholder partnerships, plans and programs at the regional and subregional levels;
Take appropriate measures to control the consequences of global warming, limiting it to an increase not exceeding 1.5 ° C;
Stressing the interdependence of peace, security and sustainable development and recognizing the progress made by African countries in this regard;
Establish effective financing strategies and commitments for Africa;
Create a Solidarity Fund for Statistical Development to assist African countries to collect the necessary statistical data, taking into account the difficulties faced by a number of African countries in reporting on SDG targets and indicators;
Encourage and promote innovation and technology to fill the data gaps needed for the preparation of national and regional development policies; and
Strengthen the role of stakeholders, in particular parliamentarians, in achieving the SDGs.
The pre-event workshops took place on April 16th. The first African Regional Forum on Science, Technology and Innovation (STI) examined ways in which STI can help the region achieve the Sustainable Development Goals and Agenda 2063, including by: young African innovators; capacity building in research and institutions; and accelerate the application of machine learning, artificial intelligence, open data, robotics and the Internet.
Source: SDG Knowledge Hub.