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General News of Tuesday, 11 December 2018

Source: Graphic.com.gh

Resource mobilisation crucial to SDGs attainment - President

The 2018 Accra Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) Investment Fair has ended with a call on companies and institutional investors to contribute to Ghana attaining the SDGs by making changes to their business operations.

That, they could do through translating the SDGs into business solutions.

“These solutions should enable companies to better manage their risk, anticipate consumer demand, secure access to needed resources and strengthen their supply chain.”

This was contained in the Outcome Document of the 2018 Accra SDGs Investment Fair.

The Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), otherwise known as the “Global Goals,” are a universal call to action to end poverty, protect the planet and ensure that all people enjoy peace and prosperity.

The 17 goals build on the successes of the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs), while including new areas such as climate change, economic inequality, innovation, sustainable consumption, peace and justice, among other priorities.

The SDGs work in the spirit of partnership and pragmatism to make the right choices now to improve life, in a sustainable way, for future generations. They provide clear guidelines and targets for all countries to adopt in accordance with their own priorities and the environmental challenges of the world at large. The SDGs are an inclusive agenda. They tackle the root causes of poverty and unite the world together to make a positive change for both people and planet.

Addressing the gathering via a video message, President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo said the government, working with all partners, had succeeded in establishing a robust architecture and a serious plan to achieve the SDGs.

“We have aligned our budget with our SDG priorities, and we are on track in developing a robust, real-time platform to monitor progress on outcomes. But without adequate financing, our efforts will fall short of the desired results,” he said.

With developing countries facing a $ 2.5 million financing gap, President Akufo-Addo said “without adequate financing, our efforts will fall short of the desired results.”

It is estimated that some $ 5-7 trillion is required to realise the SDGs globally, with developing countries alone facing a $ 2.5 trillion financing gap.

Flagship

“The SDGs Investment Fair is one such flagship initiative that we are launching to scale up financing for the SDGs by connecting private capital with government initiatives and private sector projects within the SDG space.

“It is my hope that through this annual fair, we will be able to unleash the triple power of public policies, impact capital and social entrepreneurship to solve our socioeconomic challenges,” said President Akufo-Addo.

The fair

The fair was organised by the Ministry of Finance and the Ghana Investment Promotion Centre (GIPC), in collaboration with the SDG Advisory Unit at the Presidency.

SDG investments are a new generation of impact and social investment strategies designed to attract private investments towards the SDGs while ensuring financial returns for investors.

Speaking at the ceremony, the Special Advisor to the President on the SDGs, Dr Eugene Owusu, said although the country had structures, creativity and talent to achieve the SDGs, finance remained a major obstacle.

He said for Ghana to be successful in attaining the SDGs, Ghanaian businesses must align their operations to the goals.

The Minister of Planning, Prof. Gyan Baffuor, noted that 25 years after the country returned to the path of democracy, cases of inequality, hunger, poverty and deprivation should be a thing of the past.

To drive support for commitment, he said in the past, commitment had not matched actions and called on participants to walk the talk to help the country attain the SDG targets.

Private sector

Contributing to a panel discussion on “Business Opportunities in SDGs in investment,” the outgoing United Nations Resident Coordinator, Ms Christine Evans-Klock, urged the private sector in Ghana to invest in vocational and technical education in the country.

The Chief Executive Officer of the Ghana Investment Promotion Centre, Mr Yoofi Grant, observed that all 17 SDGs offered business opportunities in Ghana.

He mentioned renewal energy as an investment opportunity that did not only add to the country’s energy mix but also dealt with climate change which was biting hard on the environment.