Brussels, 13 October 2016 (Transparency International): Seventy-five diverse civil society organisations have today joined forces to formally launch SDG Watch Europe.
This broad coalition will work to ensure that the European Union and its Member States live up to their commitments, made when signing the Agenda 2030 agreement in New York last September, to enable a sustainable future at home and abroad.
A year ago, governments across the world agreed on the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development that calls for a bold transformation in policy and practice.
Its 17 ambitious Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) are aimed at ensuring that decisions by governments contribute to a more sustainable, inclusive and equal future for all by 2030.
The SDGs are based on the understanding that the challenges we face, such as poverty, environmental destruction, inequality, over-consumption, corruption and conflict, are all inter-connected and cannot be tackled alone.
The goals are also universal in nature and will require collaboration and co-operation by all governments and across all sectors if they are to be successful.
The European Union, as a signatory to the SDGs, has an important role to play in making the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development a reality.
That is why the SDG Watch Europe coalition will push the EU to keep its promises for a better tomorrow. The EU faces a multitude of challenges from migration to climate change.
However, instead of fire-fighting to tackle the latest crisis, the EU should develop a strong and coherent strategy that includes a concrete implementation plan for achieving all of the SDGs.
We need to tackle the root causes of the challenges we face and not just the symptoms.
Call for inclusion of civil society
To ensure that this is the case, SDG Watch Europe is calling for civil society to be included as active partners in the entire SDG process, from planning to implementation and monitoring.
Civil society has a vital role to play, bringing experience, expertise and diversity to the table.
Together we can bring about fair, inclusive, open and sustainable development for everyone, everywhere by 2030.
SDG Watch Europe is being formally launched on 13 October at 18:00–20:30 at the North Rhine-Westphalia Representation Rue Montoyer 47, Brussels 1000.