Partnerships key for implementation of post-2015 development agenda and financing inclusive and sustainable industrialization, say participants at Addis event
Multi-stakeholder partnerships for mobilizing financing for industrial infrastructure and industrial projects, ranging from small and medium-sized enterprises to international large-scale investments, were the focus of an international event that took place in the Ethiopian capital on Tuesday.
The third Forum on “Financing for inclusive and sustainable industrial development” was organized by the United Nations Industrial Development Organization (UNIDO), together with the governments of Ethiopia and Senegal, and the United Nations Economic Commission for Africa (UNECA), on the margins of the Third International Conference on Financing for Development.
“Achieving the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) requires more than finances. I am convinced that partnerships are the means to implement the post-2015 development agenda. When countries industrialize in an inclusive and sustainable way, they can create decent jobs and preserve their resources without exploiting the environment or people,” said Ban Ki-moon, UN Secretary-General. Inclusive and sustainable industrialization is more than likely to play a significant role in the post-2015 development agenda. The first official ‘zero draft’ of the SDGs features Goal number 9 which aims to “build resilient infrastructure, promote inclusive and sustainable industrialization and foster innovation”.
LI Yong, the Director General of UNIDO, said: “The crucial challenge that the global community has gathered here in Addis Ababa to address is how to finance the achievement of the SDGs. In my view, this challenge is so immense that no single entity or institution will be able to overcome it on their own. I firmly believe that it can only be resolved through effective multi-stakeholder partnerships bringing together all the major players in the development process, including governments, bilateral and multilateral development agencies, national and international development finance institutions, the private sector, civil society and academia.”
Hailemariam Desalegn, Prime Minister of Ethiopia, noted that his country’s overall goal of attaining middle-income status rested on the growth of the manufacturing sector. “My government is not only continuing to heavily invest in infrastructure and on developing the necessary human capital with the required skills and know-how, but also in setting up industrial zones and agro-food parks which are expected to serve as the epicenter of the agro-industrial transformation process in our country,” he said. Commending UNIDO’s Programme for Country Partnership, being implemented in Ethiopia and Senegal, Desalegn said it will help further develop suitable institutional capacity and an enabling infrastructure, and facilitate the creation of a vibrant private sector and an overall conducive business environment “for the realization of inclusive and sustainable industrial development, which can only be achieved in partnership with all stakeholders”.
Speaking about the Plan Sénégal Emergent, which aims to make his country an emerging economy by 2035, Amadou Ba, Minister of Economy and Finance of Senegal, said the plan focuses, among other matters, on the development of the country’s industrial potential. “In this regard, UNIDO’s Programme for Country Partnership enables quality technical assistance delivery, and introduces innovative financing models through the synchronization and the coordination of resources from the government, the private sector and development partners within an integrated framework,” he said. According to the minister, the Government of Senegal has decided to allocate national financial resources for the implementation of the Programme for Country Partnership for Senegal.
Participants discussed public finance for industrial infrastructure and its benefits for attracting investment, job creation and export promotion, and ways to align private finance to the industrial strategy of governments and to attract quality foreign investment in large industrial projects. They also looked at challenges for future official development assistance, and at prospects for investments in developing and emerging countries, as well as at UNIDO’s role as a neutral broker in coordinating and forging partnerships, creating synergies and facilitating technology transfer. At the end of the Forum, participants took part in a field visit to the Eastern Industrial Zone, an industrial park where light manufacturing factories have recently been established as a result of foreign direct investment.