Dear Open Working Group, Support Sustainable Development by Supporting Goal 16
By Grace Zhao, June 20, 2014
Capable and effective institutions and the rule of law benefit all sustainable development goals.
This is one of the arguments brought up by a number of NGOs, including Global Financial Integrity, in an open letter to the UN’s Open Working Group. (Scroll down to read the open letter).
The Open Working Group is a 30-member group of the General Assembly of the UN that is responsible for preparing sustainable development goal proposals. As the deadline for the Millennium Development Goals approaches, an action plan for beyond 2015 has started. The Open Working Group was established in January 2013 to draft a series of objectives for the post 2015 development agenda.
The Open Working Group has proposed 17 Sustainable Development Goals to be obtained by 2030, one of which is proposed Goal 16.
Proposed Goal 16 aims to achieve two main objectives:
- Foster peaceful and inclusive societies
- Achieve rule of law, effective and capable institutions.
Of these two objectives, the goal calls for increased transparency, accountability and effectiveness of institutions that impact everybody from refugees to finance management.
The open letter urges the Open Working Group to make Goal 16 a priority because it can be a critical part of development goals. Ineffective governance and institutions hinder sustainable development goals. Furthermore, poor governance and leadership systems are often the root of sustainable development issues. Thus progress with Goal 16 would reinforce all sustainable development goals.
Goal 16 should remain on the Open Working Group’s agenda as an urgent matter. It urges countries to address systematic issues of corruption and the lack of transparency that negatively impact developing areas. Global Financial Integrity deeply supports improved transparency. The effects of ineffective governments and institutions on developing areas are too serious to ignore. We hope to see Goal 16 become a more significant target with the ultimate goal of sustainable development in mind.
NGO Open Letter to the Open Working Group: