Bangladesh

The government of Bangladesh has announced an inclusive approach to development so that the poorest and the most vulnerable populations can be integrated into its national development efforts. This "whole society approach" requires the engagement of all stakeholders in the process. Civil society organizations envisage a strengthening of democratic institutions and participatory governance to achieve the SDGs in Bangladesh, with participation of civil society in all levels of implementation, from the national to the grassroots level.

They therefore demand that "IFIs and the WTO must respect policy spaces for LDCs and developing countries so that national sovereignty in decision-making and the very nature of the State in respect to welfare and redistributive justice can be protected".

The 2017 High Level Political Forum on Sustainable Development (10-19 July), scheduled to review progress on implementing the 2030 Agenda on Sustainable Development and selected Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), features Voluntary National Reviews from 44 countries, including Bangladesh. The reviews aim to facilitate the sharing of experiences, including successes, challenges and lessons learned, with a view to accelerating the implementation of the 2030 Agenda. The selected seven goals to be reviewed in depth include SDG 17 on a revitalized global partnership for sustainable development. The other six are SDG 1: End poverty in all its forms everywhere; SDG 2: End hunger, achieve food security and adequate nutrition for all, and promote sustainable agriculture; SDG 3: Ensure healthy lives and promote well-being for all at all ages; SDG 5: Achieve gender equality and empower all women and girls; SDG 9: Build resilient infrastructure, promote inclusive and sustainable industrialization and foster innovation; SDG 14: Conserve and sustainable use the oceans, seas and marine resources. SDG 17: Strengthen and enhance the means of implementation and global partnership for sustainable development will be considered in each yearly review.

BHOLA, Bangladesh, Jul 9 2016 (IPS) - Four years ago, Farzana Aktar Ruma, now 18, was almost married off without her consent.

Her parents had settled on someone they considered a reasonably wealthy young man with a good family background, and did not want to miss the opportunity to wed their eldest daughter.

Since the 1990s, when democracy was reinstated,  Bangladesh has been able to make some extraordinary achievements.  The poverty rate was 57 percent in 1991 and was reduced to 31.5 percent in 2010, enrolment in primary education reached 98 per cent and girls slightly outnumber boys in schools. But budget allocations to health and social security are far from enough, corruption and illicit financial flows divert resources and climate change is set to produce more physical damage in Bangladesh by 2025 than in any other country. Rising sea levels, severe storms and other extreme climate-related events are going to produce millions of "climate refugees" in a country that has not contributed to generate this phenomenon and is not receiving compensation for enormous loss and damages.

Despite enormous geopolitical, political and socio-economic problems Bangladesh has been able to make some extraordinary achievements during the last couple of decades. Since the 1990s, when democracy was reinstated and some major economic reforms were made, the economy of Bangladesh has been experiencing impressive growth, and the country has been able to ensure praiseworthy progress in in education, health and gender equity. But climate change, political instability and turmoil have foiled many achievements. Only political commitments, political will and also good governance can ensure that Bangladesh will be successful in achieving the SDGs by 2030.
Photo: equitybd.

In a panel discussion held in Dhaka Reporters’ Unity Mr. Roberto Bissio, the Coordinator of Social Watch, a global civil society alliance working in more than hundred countries, said that the enforcement for human rights and addressing inequalities should be the main concern in setting post 2015 development agenda.

The panel discussion titled “Post 2015 Development Agenda: Future Global Development Partnership” organized by EquityBD, Social Watch Bangladesh and Unnayan Samunnay. The panel discussion is moderated by Rezaul Karim Chowdhury of EquityBD and other speakers of the session are Ahmed Swapan of VOICE, Aminur Rasul of Unnayan Dhara Trust, Prodip K Roy of Online Knowledge Society, Dr Sohel Iqbal, Badrul Alam of Bangladesh Krishok Federation (BKF) and Barkat Ullah Maruf of EquityBD.

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