Tags: Latin America and the Caribbean
In February 2016, the Government of the Dominican Republic issued a Presidential Decree to enact a High-Level Inter-institutional Sustainable Development Commission with the mandate to oversee and implement the 2030 Agenda. The goal of the Commission is to integrate the SDGs into all planning instruments, particularly the National Development Strategy 2012–2030.
The Ministry of Economy, Planning and Development (MEPyD) is the line ministry in charge of implementing the 2030 Agenda. Recognizing the integrated nature of the Agenda, the UNCT has created an inter-agency coordination mechanism, led by UNDP, to monitor and provide support to national counterparts for the SDG mainstreaming process as well as strengthening the government’s capacity to analyse the new development agenda.
The High-Level Inter-institutional Sustainable Development Commission is made up of government ministers, the private sector and NGO representatives engaged in work in all three pillars of the Agenda: social, economic and environmental. Two important institutions are part of the Commission: the National Council for the Elderly (CONAPE) and the National Council for HIV/AIDS, which represent populations that have traditionally received insufficient attention in public policy. The goal is to ensure that all sectors participate and put forward the main challenges they face. As such, there is a need to ensure that all groups in society have a space in the process of aligning, designing and implementing the SDGs as well as in the mechanisms developed to monitor and measure progress.
Raising public awareness
The government is committed to systematic action to improve public awareness about the 2030 Agenda. In January 2016, the second edition of the Dominican Diplomacy Forum focused on the SDGs and the promotion of mainstreaming the sustainable development agenda into diplomatic exchanges and cooperation. In June, during the General Assembly of the Organization of American States in Santo Domingo, the UNCT supported the government to raise awareness of SDG challenges, in collaboration with PAHO-WHO, UNDP and UNICEF. Similarly, the Latin America and Caribbean Social Development Forum (Santo Domingo, November 2016) will feature discussions about the SDGs and the related challenges and opportunities for social development.
Reviewing existing plans and adapting the SDGs to the national context
As part of the UN support to the High-Level Inter-institutional Sustainable Development Commission, the UNCT has started a Rapid Integrated Assessment to determine the country’s level of preparedness to implement the 2030 Agenda. The results will inform the Commission’s work and guide high-level recommendations.
Monitoring and reporting
The government launched an online platform to monitor the MDG indicators in 2013, just two years before the 2015 deadline. In contrast, for the SDGs the National Office of Statistics and MEPyD already have a proposal for the new SDG online platform, with plans to launch it in 2017 to ensure an early start to the monitoring process.
The National Office of Statistics has assessed national capacities for the production of statistics to monitor and report on the SDGs. It indicates that the government has full capacity to report on 27 percent of the global SDG indicators. For 34 percent of the indicators, there is little national information gathered for their calculation or the information available is deficient. For the remaining 39 percent of indicators, there is no national information available; therefore, complex methodological changes and substantial investments are required.