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European Commission signs strategic agreement with international women’s groups

DEVCO launched 5-year partnership with coalition of 5 global & regional women’s networks to implement Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs)

21.03.2016 |

EC Commissioner Neven Mimica (left) for Development Cooperation signing 5 year Framework Partnership with Sascha Gabizon (WECF, right) and Ms. Priscilla Achakpa (WEP, middle)

The European Commission’s International Cooperation arm (DEVCO) has launched a 5-year partnership agreement with a coalition of 5 global and regional women’s networks to implement the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).

To read the full press release: click here

The 17 SDGs, adopted by the UN in September 2015, are a universal roadmap to achieve a historic pledge to end structural inequalities between countries, between rich and poor and between men and women by 2030.

This partnership results from the European Commission’s commitment to support the implementation of SDG 17 to “Strengthen the means of implementation and revitalize the global partnership for sustainable development” and recognize that “empowered civil society (…) can contribute to more effective policies, equitable and sustainable development (…)”.

The 5 groups signing the agreement are WECF International, Women Environmental Programme , Global Forest Coalition, Gender and Water Alliance, and Asia Pacific Forum on Women, Law and Development. Together they represent over 200 organizations in more than 52 countries that will directly engage in the project, as well as a network of over 900 member organizations in over 100 countries. The Framework Agreement is one out of 21 signed with EC Commissioner Mimica at the Europaid CSO Forum on Friday 18th of March in Brussels.

WECF Director Sascha Gabizon states: “Despite 50 years of efforts and the significant development of international instruments and mechanisms to advance women’s rights, the human rights situation of women in most countries is at a stand-still or even being rolled back. For instance, fewer than 2 countries have parity in national parliaments, women do 75% of unpaid work globally, and own less land and assets then men. The SDGs recognize that women’s human rights, dignity and full participation in decision-making is a pre-requisite to achieving sustainable development for all.”

These women’s coalitions have been part of the sustainable development process from the very beginning as part of the Women’s Major Group created by UN Member States in 1992 as a key social constituency for Sustainable Development.

Priscilla Achakpa of Women Environment Program (WEP) adds: “We were key players in the making of the SDGs. We helped ensure that women’s human rights, gender equality and development justice is at the very core of this global discourse. Now we will make sure the SDGs are implemented in accordance with those priorities.”



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