UN MGCY Statement
High-Level Political Forum
14 July 2016
Session 14: Countries in special situations
Link to Statement:
2016 HLPF – UN MGCY Statement in Session 14
Thank you for giving us the floor. I am speaking on behalf of the UN Major Group for Children and Youth.
We are happy that the focus of discussion is on this topic, especially in the light of several action plans that seek to address the needs of these countries.
Context specific action plans will be effective when the people, especially young people of the countries in special situations play an active role in shaping them. Additionally, these plans need to insulate the countries from shocks through institutional measures that enable capacity enhancing and prevention against predatory practices.
In regards to domestic resource mobilization, even though this is an important topic, it must not undermine other critical means of implementation and sources of finance including official development assistance.
In order to mobilize domestic resources for better implementation of the Agenda, an enabling environment must be aligned appropriately. During the course of the process, we have raised the importance of ecological tax reform and ecological risk integration into sovereign credit and useful measures. However, these have not been taken up.
We must pursue and promote economic well-being by among other, increased participation in fair global trade in landlocked and middle income countries, as well as strengthening international support.
The current paragraph 20 of the Vienna Program of Action mentions civil society participations. Such a reference does not guarantee designated avenues for young people to engage. We, for the operational modalities, correct this issue. Moving on, the UN Security Council Resolution 2250 highlights the importance of the role of young people in conflict prevention and resolution, peacebuilding and reconciliation.
The Arab spring and resulting political unrest involved many youth seeking greater access to rights and a better life. It is evident that a lack of investment in, for instance Goal 5 and 8, which are critical, goal 16 for peace, justice and strong institutions would become almost impossible to reach.
It is necessary that special countries affected by natural disasters or manmade struggles, have policies to mitigate and prevent the negative effects as well as avoid abandoning the rights of people, and in particular youth, due to a lack of preventive policies.
Being young and living in places of conflict, of any kind, hinders any opportunity to education, health services, work or socio-economic improvement. Therefore, we stress the point to involve the youth in conflict resolution processes since the youth have greater capacity to adjust and evolve in a world with ICT expansion and other new challenges. We further urge you to recognize that the youth are one of a nation’s greatest and most underestimated assets.
Additional Talking Points:
– Political instability and recurrent conflicts hampering development efforts.
– Lack of adequate income and economic prospects. Need for sustainable, inclusive and equitable economic development driven by industrialization and manufacturing.
– Drug trafficking, piracy and terrorism being key challenges.
– Gender inequality rendering women and adolescent girls particularly vulnerable to, and impacted by HIV/AIDS.
– Minimize inequalities by promoting social safety nets as well as inclusive growth that creates employment and livelihood opportunities.
– Drastic demographic shifts with a fast growing population that is the youngest in the world hence rising rates of youth unemployment and resulting social instability.
– Food insecurity. High prevalence of hunger and malnutrition among children.
– Lack of access to energy which exacerbate the vulnerability of the chronically poor and constrains their productive capacity.
– High transport and trade transaction costs.
– Non-communicable diseases.