Vladivostok hosted the multilateral international Economic and Social Commission for Asia and the Pacific (ESCAP) forum, dedicated to the achievement of the UN Sustainable Development Goals in North-East Asia. The forum was attended by representatives of six countries from the subregion, namely China, North Korea, Japan, South Korea, Mongolia and Russia.
In his welcoming speech, Ganbold Baasanjav, Director of the UN ESCAP East & North East Asia Office, thanked the Russian government and the leadership of the Primorsky Krai for organising the summit in Vladivostok, one of the largest hubs in the Russian Far East. “This is a great opportunity for enhancing our multilateral collaboration. The forum participants — representatives of government bodies, business, the academic community and youth — have gathered here to discuss the implementation of the Sustainable Development Goals. And we need to take into consideration the opinions of each of them,” said Ganbold Baasanjav.
“The Russian Federation is firmly committed to the implementation of the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development,” emphasized Yevgeny Tomikhin, Ambassador Extraordinary and Plenipotentiary of Russia to Thailand and Permanent Representative of our country to the ESCAP. “There is no doubt, however, that it is impossible to achieve the SDGs by the efforts of governments alone. Funds donated by individual benefactors, charitable organisations and the community are becoming increasingly important. What is more, representatives of these sectors make not only financial, but also substantive contributions to the achievement of the SDGs.”
The forum platform provided the participants with plenty of opportunities for dialogue, exchange of experience and strengthening partnerships. The key areas of discussion outlined by the organisers were equality, building a sustainable society, protecting the environment, and ensuring universal engagement.
On the sidelines of the forum, the Russian National Network of the Global Compact Association held a session devoted to involving the business sector in the implementation of the SDGs. “Today, the UN assigns a key role to business and suggests relying on the ingenuity, innovation and dynamism of the business community. Only a few years have passed since the adoption of the SDGs, but many Russian companies have already joined in their implementation,” with these words, Larisa Ovchinnikova, Director for Development of the UN Global Compact Local Network, opened the session.
MTS and Sakhalin Energy presented their experience to the forum participants. “It is natural that our company should be greatly interested in the Asia-Pacific region: our production facilities, as well as most of our customers are located here,” said Natalia Gonchar, Head of Information Support and Media Relations Subdivision. “We are happy to share best practices with our colleagues and neighbours, since we have been doing work to implement the SDGs since they were adopted in 2015, and making every effort to involve wide masses of the population, including during the preparation of annual sustainable development reports.”The multilateral ESCAP forum is part of the preparations for the 2020 Asia-Pacific Forum on Sustainable Development.
16 October 2019