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More Than 150 Civil Society Organizations Meet in Mexico Before the Regional Forum on Sustainable Development Begins
Some 231 representatives of 156 civil society organizations from 19 countries in the region are meeting this Tuesday, April 25, in Mexico City, just before the first meeting of the Forum of the Countries of Latin America and the Caribbean on Sustainable Development, which will be inaugurated on Wednesday at a ceremony in the National Palace and will run through Friday, convened under the auspices of ECLAC.
The meeting with civil society, which is taking place in the Krystal Grand Reforma Uno hotel, was inaugurated by the Executive Secretary of the Economic Commission for Latin America and the Caribbean (ECLAC), Alicia Bárcena, and Mexico’s Undersecretary for Multilateral Affairs and Human Rights, Miguel Ruiz-Cabañas. The aim is to generate a coordinating group of civil society organizations to establish the bases of a participation mechanism focused on the implementation of the 2030 Agenda in the region.
“We are about to launch one of the most innovative processes in our region, which is the first meeting of the Forum of the Countries of Latin America and the Caribbean on Sustainable Development,” created as the regional mechanism for follow-up to implementation of the 2030 Agenda, which puts equality and people’s dignity at the center, Bárcena indicated.
ECLAC’s most senior official emphasized that the 2030 Agenda requires the active participation of civil society to develop and transcend, since it represents an intergenerational effort, with a long-term horizon, that must be implemented in the complex current context, which is characterized by the weakening of multilateralism, the return of protectionism and the rise of extremist political movements.
“We need to build an open, inclusive, participatory, transparent agenda that allows us to forge systems of accountability,” Bárcena said. “In order for the 2030 Agenda to have a future and yield results, we need to measure, breaking the statistical silence around many of the problems that affect our society.”
Meanwhile, Undersecretary Miguel Ruiz-Cabañas welcomed the civil society organizations that will participate in the regional forum on sustainable development in Mexico City on April 26-28 to his country. “The Forum is pioneering, because it will be the first one to be held as part of a process that will be periodic” to define, among all the stakeholders, how to effectively implement the 2030 Agenda in the region, the Ambassador explained.
“For Mexico, the implementation of the 2030 Agenda is a State commitment. For that reason, the National Council for Implementation of the 2030 Agenda will be established tomorrow via a decree that we hope will ensure continuity beyond this government’s mandate,” Ruiz-Cabañas said. “We are expecting a great deal from civil society organizations” in this process, he added.
The Forum of the Countries of Latin America and the Caribbean on Sustainable Development is open to the participation of all governments from Latin America and the Caribbean and representatives of national parliaments, other bodies in the United Nations System, organizations for regional and subregional integration, international financial institutions and development banks, the private sector, academia and civil society.
Created in 2016, this regional mechanism seeks to provide peer learning opportunities through voluntary reviews, the exchange of good practices and the discussion of common goals. Its conclusions will be sent directly to the United Nations High-Level Political Forum (HLPF) on Sustainable Development, the global mechanism for follow-up to the 2030 Agenda, which will convene each July in New York.