I thank you, Madam President. So good to see you in the Chair and happy to be back in person.
I thank Executive Director Natalia Kanem for her comprehensive briefing. We are happy to see significant progress in achieving UNFPA’s vision of achieving the “three zeros” despite unprecedented challenges of the COVID-19 pandemic. And we appreciate your efforts for integrating the lessons learned into the ongoing and future planning cycle. We also greatly appreciate the dedicated efforts of UNFPA staff globally.
For Bangladesh, UNFPA remains a trusted partner for implementing ICPD-POA and the 2030 Agenda, especially to put women and girls at the forefront of our development efforts. And this is paying us good dividends now in our efforts to tackle the COVID-19 pandemic and other emerging challenges.
Madam Executive Director, I would like to highlight 3 points:
First, we have taken note of your focus on leveraging UNDS reform and ‘Our Common Agenda’ to contribute to the achievement of the SDGs. The success on the ground will, however, depend on the synergistic actions undertaken by different UN agencies and other partners based on their comparative advantages. These actions should be tailored according to the national priorities and QCPR guidelines. My question is, how does UNFPA plan to enhance collaboration with all the partners, especially the national Governments, for advancing and institutionalizing “Our Common Agenda” during the turbulent time that we are going through and resultant challenges?
Secondly, and this is linked to my previous point, as we grapple with the triple crises of Covid, conflict, and climate change we know that the women and girls are bearing a heavy brunt. We need enhanced partnership and collaboration among UN agencies and their programme countries to overcome this situation.
In this regard, we welcome the launching of the Global Crises Response Group (GCRG) by the UN Secretary General, which my Prime Minister is championing along with five other global leaders. As a steering committee member, how do you plan to contribute to the fulfilment of the Group’s vision, i.e. in tackling the global crises and the impact on areas of UNFPA’s mandated work?
Finally, we appreciate your focus on “leaving no one behind” in UNFPA’s efforts. We had fruitful discussions on the Joint Board Meeting last Friday to advance this agenda.
The need of the hour is to ensure enhanced investment to regain the lost ground of the SDGs implementation, especially in the areas of poverty, inequalities, gender discrimination, and other fragilities that have been exacerbated due to the impacts of the overlapping crises. Resources, however, is likely to be scarcer.
Against this backdrop, Madam Executive Director, if you would like to share how the UNFPA can be more efficient in fulfilling its mandate? How do you plan to leverage innovations, digital tools etc. to advance the vision of LNOB?
I thank you all.