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Dec 10, 2021

Belize Signs onto UN Sustainable Development Framework

The Minister of Foreign Affairs, Eamon Courtenay, and United Nations Resident Coordinator, Birgit Gerstenberg, signed the 2022-2026 United Nations Multi-Country Sustainable Development Framework at a ceremony in Belmopan on Thursday. This effort is the UN’s response to the common development challenges of the English- and Dutch-speaking Caribbean. The document prioritizes outcomes in the region in four areas:  economic resilience and shared prosperity; equality and wellbeing; resilience to climate change shocks and sustainable natural resource management; and peace, safety, justice, and the rule of law. These outcomes will be pursued in Belize by nineteen UN agencies, government, national and international development partners, civil society, and the private sector. 


Birgit Gerstenburg, UN Resident Coordinator

“Being a part of the multi-country framework, it benefits from regional solutions where they are relevant, and will foster regional corporation and integration by the UN agency funds and programs, and its guided by the principle, “No one leaving behind.” I wish to highlight in this context that we discuss in the agenda of strategic action, with the aim specifically considering the impact that COVID-19 had and still has on the people, economy, and particularly, every part of our lives, globally, in the region, in communities, locally. Above all, the Caribbean Corporation Framework offers a strong basis for the partnership with the government and the people in Belize since it is informed by national priorities and took on the resides of broad based multi stakeholder consultations.”


Eamon Courtenay

Eamon Courtenay, Minister of Foreign Affairs

“When one reads the document, it is clear that the outcomes describe a better Caribbean and a better Belize, but more than that they describe a just society. And it seems to me, as I read the document again yesterday and last night, what really holds the document together? What binds it together? And I believe that the philosophical underpinning is justice. A more just Belize; economic justice, social justice, and environmental justice. United Nation Organization and Belize will sign a document to collaborate on a more just Belize. But the question is, how are we going to achieve that? The plans are clearly laid out. The country implementation plan will be concluded and designed and I have no doubt that it will be clear as the MSDF is. But, I want to suggest and propose that there is an additional element which we must not forget. And again, I believe touched on by CEO Arthurs, in order to achieve just societies in the Caribbean and Belize, we cannot forget the role of our citizens, role of our people.”


This is the second generation of this regional framework. Belize is the first of the eighteen countries in the English- and Dutch-speaking Caribbean to officially launch the new UN MSDCF. 

Viewers please note: This Internet newscast is a verbatim transcript of our evening television newscast. Where speakers use Kriol, we attempt to faithfully reproduce the quotes using a standard spelling system.

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