Launch of the 2015 Botswana Millennium Development Goals Status Report and the Global Human Development Report 2015Apr 5, 2016
On 5 April 2016, The Ministry of Finance and Development Planning, Honorable Ontefetse Kenneth Matambo and the United Nations Development Programme Resident Representative, Anders Pedersen hosted a joint breakfast event to launch the Botswana 2015 Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) and the 2015 Global Human Development Report (GHDR) in Botswana. The launch was held at the Avani Hotel, to a full audience.
Honorable Kenneth Ontefetse Matambo gave the opening remarks and commented on Botswana’s significant progress in achieving 6 out of the 8 Millennium Development Goals. "Botswana made commendable progress during the 15-years implementation of the MDGs due to a combination of prudent macro-economic management and good governance," stated Honorable Matambo. The Minister also attributed the success of the MDGs to the guidance provided by the national development frameworks; Vision 2016, the National Development Plan(NDP) nine and ten and, UNDP’s uninterrupted assistance in the implementation, monitoring and production of various MDGs status reports.
Minister Matambo however expressed his concerns on three goals that had not been met. These are: maternal health, ensuring environmental sustainability and developing a global partnership for development. Of particular concern was the goal for maternal health, as stated by Matambo "Botswana’s target fluctuated between 193 and 163 per 100 000 in the last 5 years and yet the global target stood at 82 per 100 000." With the new global development agenda adopted in September 2015 through the Sustainable Development Goals, along with the new Vision 2036 and NDP 11, Matambo vowed to increase Government efforts to ensure that "no one is left behind."
The Resident Representative, Anders Pedersen highlighted the gains of the MDGs noting abject poverty was still a key concern at a global and national level with Botswana’s Gini Coefficient persisting at 0.60. Echoing the sentiments of Minister Matambo, Pedersen stated that the new 2030 Agenda was a commitment by world leaders to do much more in attaining sustainable development and improving human dignity, while protecting planet earth. "To this end and as we move on from the MDGs to the SDGs, The Global Human Development Report serves to further inform the development agenda specifically speaking to SDG Goal 8, on sustainable jobs for sustained economic growth."
The focus of the 2015 HDR is on work – a topic close to Botswana with the current youth unemployment rate at around 17%. The Report emphasizes that there is no automatic link between work and human development, but it is rather the quality of work that determines whether work will enhance human development. The HDR also recognizes that achieving sustainable development will mean jobs will need to change if countries are to make progress on building low emission and climate-resilient futures. The report acknowledges that globalization has winners and losers – with more opportunities for highly skilled workers and those with access to technology, including the internet.
The Resident Representative thanked the Minister of Finance for his commitment to Botswana’s development agenda. He also reaffirmed UNDP’s support to the Government of Botswana stating "You have UNDP’s unwavering support as you move towards implementing the SGDs and finalize the drafting of new national strategies to ensure prosperity for all Batswana."
The speeches were followed by presentations and a panel discussion on recent global development agreements in 2015, including the SDGs, the third Financing for Development agreement and the twenty first agreement of Parties on Climate Change and their relevance to Botswana.
UNDP Botswana Communications and Advocacy Officer