NITI Aayog and United Nations in India on September 28, 2018 signed the Sustainable Development Framework (UNSDF) for 2018-2022 at an event in New Delhi. The agreement is a reflection of the commitment and efforts made by India towards attaining the Sustainable Development Goals.
The framework was signed by the NITI Aayog CEO Amitabh Kant and United Nations Resident Coordinator in India Yuri Afanasiev at a special signing ceremony presided over by NITI Aayog Vice Chairperson Rajiv Kumar.
Rajiv Kumar emphasised that the period between 2018 and 2022 will be a crucial phase in India’s development story since the year 2022 marks the 75th anniversary of India’s Independence.
Hence, at such a time, partnership instruments such as the UNSDF assume gain even more significance to accelerate the pace towards building a New India by 2022, an India that is free of poverty and equal for all.
Key Features of UNSDF
• The framework outlines the development cooperation strategy between the Union Government and the United Nations country team in India, in support of the achievement of India’s key national development priorities and the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).
• The framework was created following a highly participative process, in consultation with government entities, civil society representatives, academia and the private sector.
• The key focus areas of the framework include poverty and urbanisation, health, water, sanitation, education, nutrition and food security, climate change, clean energy, and disaster resilience, skilling, entrepreneurship, and job creation and gender equality and youth development.
• Under the framework, the United Nations will support the Union Government on south-south cooperation, in partnership with the Ministry of External Affairs.
• The total planned budget outlay for the implementation of the UNSDF 2018-2022 is approximately Rs 11000 crore, of which 47 percent is planned to be mobilised through the course of implementation from multiple sources, including the private sector and the government.
Speaking on the occasion, NITI Aayog CEO Amitabh Kant, highlighted the need to promote innovation in meeting India’s development challenges and bringing on board the power of social entrepreneurs and the private sector to act on scale.
• The framework is a step in the direction of the overarching principle of the SDGs to leave no one behind.
• The programmatic work outlined in the UNSDF targets the seven low-income states -Bihar, Chhattisgarh, Jharkhand, MP, Odisha, Rajasthan, UP and the North-East region along with the aspirational districts identified earlier this year by the NITI Aayog.
• The work under the framework will mainly focus on improving the lives of the most marginalised, poor, and vulnerable communities and people in the country, especially women and girls.
• The framework also includes a set of UN flagship programs that are aligned with major government schemes. The flagship programmes will aim to provide innovative, multi-sectoral solutions to some of the most pressing development challenges faced by India, while also serving as catalysts for an increased investment of development finance.
• The programmes range from affordable housing for the poor to increasing access to clean energy in rural off-grid areas, from protecting all children from vaccine-preventable diseases to quality education for all children and skilling for young people, especially young girls and from ending stunting to improving the child sex ratio.
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