PRESS RELEASE:-The inaugural United Nations Multi-country Sustainable Development Framework (UN MSDF) Regional Coordination Meeting (RCM) took place in Kingston, Jamaica on June 30th, 2017. The meeting participants discussed progress made towards the achievement of the MSDF priority areas, and provided strategic guidance to the implementation of this new development pathway for the region. The RCM attracted specially invited government officials and UN representatives from across the English and Dutch speaking Caribbean.
In her opening remarks, Ambassador Marcia Gilbert-Roberts, CD, Permanent Secretary, Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Foreign Trade, Jamaica remarked that the experiences shared will demonstrate in practical terms importance and value of this framework. UN Resident Coordinator for Jamaica, Mr. Bruno Pouezat, stated that we [the Caribbean] now have a tool that allows us to work better together and when we meet again we would be able to document how much we have achieved.
The RCM agenda also included a discussion on Mainstreaming, Acceleration and Policy Support (MAPS), as a common approach to its support to the implementation of the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development, and its associated Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) at the country level. Representatives of the Government of Jamaica and the Government of Trinidad and Tobago shared their experiences in successfully executing their MAPS country missions.
The UN MSDF focuses on four priorities:
An Inclusive, Equitable and Prosperous Caribbean
A Healthy Caribbean
A Safe, Cohesive and Just Caribbean
A Sustainable and Resilient Caribbean
The UN MSDF is the successor to the six (6) current United Nations Development Assistance Frameworks (UNDAFs) that cover 18 countries in the English and Dutch speaking Caribbean. The countries covered are Antigua and Barbuda, Anguilla, Aruba, Barbados, Belize, British Virgin Islands, Commonwealth of Dominica, Curaҫao, Grenada, Guyana, Jamaica, Montserrat, Saint Lucia, Saint Kitts and Nevis, Saint Vincent and the Grenadines, Sint Maarten, and Trinidad and Tobago, and Trinidad and Tobago.
18 UN agencies will contribute to the implementation of the MSDF, which is expected to amount to USD$197.9 million, for joint initiatives over a five-year period. In addition to this, individual UN agencies will continue to focus on areas of their mandate through their country programme and strategies.
The UN MSDF supports the realization of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), the SAMOA Pathway and other international development aspirations, as well as the national development plans of the individual countries in the English and Dutch speaking Caribbean. It is also intended to support the promotion of all international human rights that have been ratified in the English and Dutch speaking Caribbean. The UN MSDF is closely aligned with the CARICOM’s “Strategic Plan for the Caribbean Community” which outlines a comprehensive plan for repositioning of the CARICOM community.
The UN MSDF defines how the Agencies, Funds, and Programmes of the United Nations will use their comparative advantages within a single strategic framework that aligns with and supports the overarching strategic goals of the Caribbean’s governments, and key stakeholders.
The UN MSDF acts as a mechanism that would decrease the administrative burden on national governments and prompt a more coherent response to regional and national challenges, needs, and priorities. This analysis was informed by the work of regional entities, national governments, and key actors such as the Economic Commission for Latin America and the Caribbean (ECLAC) and the region’s Universities. It identifies the fundamental constraints to the development of the region related to a number of interconnected dimensions such as the economic, social, and environmental that are seen as critical for sustainable development and democratic governance.
The UN MSDF signals a new day for UN operations in the Caribbean. In keeping with the UN mandate “Delivering as One” UN Country Teams are delivering one programme, one budget. one operating system and one communication strategy with one leader.
The MSDF focuses on promoting increased access to quality education and lifelong learning; enhancing equitable access to quality social services for all; fostering voice and accountability; universal access to quality health care; climate adaptation, disaster risk reduction and sustainable energy programs.
This framework aims to ensure that no one is left behind in national development efforts, and exemplifies the commonly-shared belief that the similar development challenges of the Caribbean countries require a coherent and coordinated response by the United Nations.
The MSDF is available on the website: www.2030Caribbean.org