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High Level Political Forum

Statement delivered by Luca Maestripieri, Deputy Director-General for General Affairs and Development Cooperation Policy Orientation, at the High Level Political Forum during the Voluntary National Review – ‘External Dimension of the 2030 Agenda’ at the United Nations.—


Chair, distinguished Delegates,

The Italian Ministry of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation, which I represent here today, is responsible for the external dimension of the 2030 Agenda.

Its role in helping partner countries achieve the SDGs was strengthened by the new law on development cooperation approved by the Italian Parliament in 2014. The new law gives the Ministry the function of coordinating among different partners and stakeholders.
The main output so far has been the new Three-Year Strategic and Planning Document on Development Cooperation, which was approved by the Council of Ministers last June.

This new Document, specifying the objectives, thematic and geographical areas of Italian development cooperation as well as its financial resources, is modeled on the 2030 Agenda. Sectors and themes reflect the integrated nature of the Agenda and activities that will be carried out in areas relevant to the SDGs and targets. Governance, democracy and human rights, migration and development, agriculture and food security, climate and the environment, health and education, protection of cultural heritage, are at the heart of the Italian development cooperation strategy. Beyond traditional areas of intervention, new sectors for action are included – such as better data for sustainable development, domestic resources mobilization for financing development, and the involvement of the private sector.

Means of Implementation and SDG 17 are another important area for the external dimension of the Agenda. The Three-year Document shows the gradual increase of financial resources for development cooperation in 2016, 2017 and 2018, in line with the provisions of the Law to enable Italy to fulfil the commitments and achieve the objectives agreed to at the international level.

The draft of the Document was shared with all the development cooperation stakeholders. Government and other central administration officials, regions and local public entities, civil society and non-profit organizations, the private sector, academia and the research community all contributed their ideas and experience to the final version of the Document.

We are already in the process of updating the Three-year Document for the 2017-2019 period. While the strategic objectives and priorities are confirmed, the new version takes into account the evolving national and international context. It will reflect the National Strategy for Sustainable Development, the new European Consensus, and the priority assigned to Africa, with particular reference to the necessity of tackling the root causes of migration, investing in countries of origin and transit.

The focus on Africa, where 35 out of the 45 LDCs are located, is consistent with both the renewed attention of the 2030 and Addis Ababa Agendas on the Least Developed Countries, with the overarching principle of “leaving no one behind.”

Finally, I would like to mention that Italy, being fully aware of the global dimension of this challenge, has been actively promoting the adoption of sustainability criteria also in the context of its current Presidency of the G7. Substantive references to the implementation of the 2030 Agenda are included in the Communiqué of the Taormina G7 Summit and in the outcome documents of the relevant G7 ministerial meetings.