UNITED NATIONS, Sept. 22 (Xinhua) -- World leaders attending the 78th session of the UN General Assembly's general debate have emphasized the need for intensified efforts toward achieving the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), with midpoint assessments falling short.
The UN Secretary-General's 2023 SDGs Report: Special Edition shows that about 12 percent of targets are on track; more than half, though showing progress, are moderately or severely off track. Some 30 percent have seen no movement or regressed below the 2015 baseline.
On Friday, Bangladeshi Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina stated that the prolonged impacts of the pandemic and the consequences of the climate crisis have significantly hindered the attainment of SDGs in developing countries.
Looking ahead to next year's Summit of the Future to reset the global push to attain the SDGs, she said: "We must make all efforts to collectively address the common challenges of humanity to secure a peaceful, prosperous, and sustainable future for all."
"Are we going to be too late for the SDGs?" Prime Minister of Barbados Mia Mottley questioned on Friday, urging leaders to "summon the determination to make the fundamental governance changes."
Highlighting the SDGs as "the conferral of dignity on our people," she expressed concerns about achieving the goals given the challenges like the climate crisis and rising global hunger.
Addressing the UN General Assembly on Thursday, Pushpa Kamal Dahal, Prime Minister of Nepal, urged greater international support through development, technical assistance and foreign direct investment to overcome shocks induced by the COVID-19 pandemic, climate change and geopolitical tensions.
"To ensure sustainability and ownership of our desired developmental goals, we have engaged in extensive consultations at all levels," President Taneti Maamau of Kiribati said on Thursday.
Speaking at the UN General Assembly on Wednesday, African leaders expressed their dedication to sustainable development and advocated for a world that embraces equity and prosperity.
President Salva Kiir of South Sudan on Thursday said South Sudan has developed a SDGs rescue plan focusing on seven SDG targets.
"This plan provides a roadmap of a better future for our people," he said, noting, for example, that the constitution guarantees all children free access to education in South Sudan.
Seychelles' President Wavel Ramkalawan emphasized the need for joint global efforts to achieve transformative progress towards the SDGs.
"Sierra Leone raises its voice alongside our Economic Community of West African States community, expressing unequivocal dissent towards any extra-constitutional changes of Government," said Sierra Leone's President Julius Maada Bio.