About the Meeting

The Africa Regional Consultative Meeting on the Sustainable Development Goals will be held at the United Nations Conference Centre in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia from 31 October to 5 November 2013. The meeting is being organised jointly by the United Nations Economic Commission for Africa (UNECA), the African Union Commission (AUC) and the African Development Bank (AfDB). The Consultative Meeting will comprise an experts segment from 31 October to 2 November 2013 and a ministerial segment from 4 to 5 November 2013.

The meeting will provide a platform for African countries to identify, articulate and reach consensus on the region’s sustainable development priorities and goals, which will take into account those emerging from the region’s Post-2015 Development Agenda Process embodied in the African common position on the same. In this regard, it will prepare Africa to speak with one strong voice and rally international support around SDGs that are well-aligned with the region’s sustainable development priorities and aspirations.  The consultative meeting is expected to adopt an outcome document that will serve as Africa’s common reference document and collective input to the work of the UN General Assembly Open Working Group on SDGs.

As you will recall, the elaboration of sustainable development goals (SDGs) is among the key commitments agreed upon at the United Nations Conference on Sustainable Development (Rio+20) which took place from 20 to 22 June 2012 in Rio de Janeiro Brazil. Rio+20 recognized that SDGs could be useful for pursuing focused and coherent action on sustainable development.  It underlined that goals should address and incorporate in a balanced way all three dimensions of sustainable development and their interlinkages. The Conference also recognized the importance and utility of a set of SDGs that among others take into account different national circumstances, capacities and priorities, build upon commitments already made, and contribute to the full implementation of the outcomes of all major summits in the economic, social and environmental fields. Furthermore, the Conference stressed that the goals should be coherent with and integrated into the United Nations development agenda beyond 2015.

As a follow-up to Rio+20, the Africa Regional Implementation Meeting (Africa-RIM) was held in November 2012. The RIM deliberated on the main outcomes of Rio+20 and their implications for Africa. This meeting adopted the Africa RIM Outcome Document, which represents Africa’s collective input to the Rio+20 follow-up processes, including the sustainable development goals. In this regard, the Africa-RIM agreed on the need to have an effective, broad-based, bottom-up and consultative process to flesh out the goals, indicators and targets that should underpin the SDGs. The RIM also agreed that the goals, targets and indicators should be informed by among others, the outcomes of the Africa process on the Post-2015 development agenda.

Considering the cross-cutting nature of sustainable development, the meeting will bring together policy makers and high-level experts from the economic, social, environmental and governance spheres representing government and inter-governmental institutions, the private sector, civil society organizations and other major groups, as well as international development partners.