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Wednesday, 31 May 2023
AMB. ANTONIO M. LAGDAMEO, Permanent Representative of the Republic of the Philippines to the United Nations
CR 5, United Nations Headquarters, New York


Thank you Madam Chair.

The Philippine delegation appreciates the work of the UN Department of Economic and Social Affairs (DESA) in assisting Member States, specifically the developing countries, in their efforts to enhance the economic and social dimensions of Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).

As Member States take necessary steps to accelerate the implementation and attainment of the SDGs in the last decade of action, I wish to highlight the following points:

  1. We support the continuing enhancement of the effectiveness, efficiency, accountability and internal coordination of the DESA to allow it to provide support for the follow-up and review of the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development at the global level.
  2. The most recent reform of the Department stemmed from General Assembly resolution 70/299 of 2016, but there is a need to do more in the reform process. The Secretary-General had identified six (6) mutually-reinforcing areas that would constitute the final phase of this reform in response to Assembly resolution 70/299. While no consensus was achieved yet on these areas, this time, we need to work harder to ensure that we agree on the elements that would constitute the next stage of the reform process, with the aim of further strengthening DESA. 
  3. We appreciate the coordinated action among DESA and other UN entities, including the Regional Commissions, the Development Coordination Office, the Resident Coordinators and the UN Country Teams, to ensure efficient delivery of UN system support for the implementation of Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), in particular to the developing nations, including Middle-Income Countries, Least Developed Countries, Landlocked Developing Countries and Small Island Developing States, consistent with the priorities defined by Member States in the context of the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development, and we call on the Secretary-General, in line with resolution 75/233, to further enhance actions in this regard.
  4. The Philippines supported the inclusion of middle-income countries (MICs) in the CPC Programming Report, which was subsequently adopted during the Committee’s 62nd session. In the report, the crucial role of MICs was highlighted in order to strengthen the UN system-wide development plans and programs of the Secretary General. The Committee also underscored the full implementation of all relevant resolutions pertaining to the needs of MICs. We count on CPC to maintain this momentum, and that an agreement, again, can be reached on this item this session.
  5. In this regard, we would like to ask for updates on the measures in place to strengthen the inclusion of MICs in global efforts to achieve the 2030 Agenda and its SDGs. PH for instance, as a middle-income country, continues to face structural gaps in areas such as, among others, inequality, infrastructure, education, health and nutrition, environment and digital connectivity and have been further exacerbated by the pandemic. Last year’s SDG Progress Report also highlighted that 8 out of 10 new poor are in middle-income countries. PH supports the call of the Secretary General for the UN Development System to revamp its support to middle-income countries in all their diversity, to help us get back on track in the implementation of the 2030 Agenda; as well as the mapping exercise to be conducted by the Secretary General on support provided by the UN system to middle-income countries.
  6. Finally, we stress the urgent need to develop indicators that go beyond Gross Domestic Product (GDP) as a measure of progress. We would like to hear the views of the secretariat on this process, which we strongly support. We also welcome ongoing efforts to promote the multidimensional vulnerability index and call for its eventual universal applicability.

Thank you, Madam Chair.