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STATEMENT DELIVERED BY UNDER-SECRETARY OF STATE OF THE MINISTRY OF ENVIRONMENT, HON. SILVIA VELO, AT THE MINISTERIAL DIALOGUE “A UNIVERSAL INTEGRATED POLICY AGENDA TO IMPLEMENT RIO+20 AND REALIZE THE FUTURE WE WANT” DURING THE UN HIGH-LEVEL POLITICAL FORUM ON SUSTAINABLE DEVELOPMENT FOR 2014, (July 7, 2014)

Mr. President, dear Colleagues,

Let me first thank the President of ECOSOC and the Secretariat for inviting me to address this meeting on this specific issue which bring us immediately at the heart of the post 2015 Agenda and stimulates our reflection on its core elements.

The challenges we are facing today are increasingly interconnected and relevant to all countries, all regions, all people. They call for a universal and integrated approach, capable of capturing the inter-relation between the three dimensions of sustainability.

These same challenges require an innovative culture of governance, that is cross-sectoral and multidimensional, based on policy coordination and coherence, on inclusiveness and accountability. To this extent, a structured dialogue with civil society, the private sector, the scientific institutions and local communities is fundamental.

The post 2015 Agenda should ensure well-being and prosperity for all, while preserving the ecological foundations of society. Key aspects, such as the safeguarding of the natural resource base of development, the promotion of equality and human rights or the empowerment of women – just to mention some – should become priority issues that cross each and every area of decision-making, from agriculture to food production, from urban development to infrastructures.

The need to respect the principle of universality together with the concept of differentiation is essential to build a strong ownership of the agenda and to take into account different national situations and levels of development. There are various feasible approaches to find the right balance between universality and differentiation that needs to be further discussed within the post 2015 preparatory process.

What appears to be evident is that the rigid and traditional North-South scheme does not respond to the new challenges we are facing. A new model of cooperation is needed, within the broader framework of a Global Partnership, where everyone has its own  rights and responsibilities.

In introducing the ingredients of a universal, integrated, ambitious and transformative sustainable development agenda we consider that the recognition of the value of natural capital – including through the efficient use of resources – is a fundamental aspect.

In Italy we recognized these aspects and are committed to take immediate action. To this extent, the government has proposed to establish a “National Commission on Natural Capital”, with the view to introduce environmental accounting in economic and financial decision-making and policy making processes.

We are also exploring, at national level, fiscal instruments to promote the shifting of taxation from labour to resources depletion and pollution.

I believe that these are good examples of integrated policymaking and thus tasty ingredients to take into consideration for the new sustainable development agenda.


Mr. President, dear colleagues,

a universal and integrated agenda requires to build new partnerships, new mechanisms of governance, new approaches to join efforts and resources, new ways of understanding and measuring progress, beyond 2015 and beyond GDP.

We have an enormous task: to shape an innovative model of development. Let’s do our best to succeed, for the people, for the planet, for the life of everyone.


Thank you.