Co-chair Ban Ki-moon Speaks at Global Citizen Festival in Berlin Calling for Climate Action

On Tuesday May 21st 2019, Ban Ki-moon Centre partner Global Citizen hosted GC Live Berlin, bringing together policy makers from around the world seeking to end extreme poverty and to support African Youth. Former UN Secretary-General and Centre Co-chair Ban Ki-Moon made particular impact through his participation and speech at the event resulting in large coverage across social media and media outlets.

At the event, Nigeria and Zambia made important commitments to water, sanitation, and nutrition. Co-chair Ban, World Bank Chief Executive Kristalina Georgieva, and German Federal Minister of Economic Cooperation and Development Gerd Müller all made powerful statements on the world’s most pressing issues associated with ending extreme poverty and addressing climate change.

Along with CEO Georgieva and Bill Gates, Co-chair Ban chairs the Global Commission on Adaptation focused on climate adaptation.

During his speech at GC live Berline, Co-chair Ban emphasized:

“Now is the moment to make our lives, our homes, and our communities climate friendly and climate ready.”

BKMC CEO Monika Froehler also attended the event in support of African Youth which underlined the idea of one generation, one future.

In addition to the commitments made by African countries, the government of Germany announced support for 60 million smallholder farmers globally to adapt to climate change.

The event followed weeks of campaigning by Global Citizens around the world. Global Citizens from Germany, South Africa, Nigeria, and 143 other countries took action in the lead-up to the event which earned them tickets to the concert. The event celebrated Africa Day, which takes place on May 25 and commemorates the founding of the Organisation of African Unity (now known as the African Union) on May 25, 1963.

Global Citizen Live Berlin was presented in partnership with Engagement Global, the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, and Live Nation.

Source: https://www.prnewswire.com/news-releases/global-citizen-live-berlin-global-citizens-artists-and-world-leaders-from-nigeria-zambia-germany-rwanda-and-ghana-took-unprecedented-action-on-ending-extreme-poverty-by-2030-300854704.html

Photo: Global Citizen

#GCLiveBerlin #EineGenerationEineZukunft #SDGs #GlobalCitizens

UNECE Regional Forum on Sustainable Development 2019

The UNECE Regional Forum on Sustainable Development took place on 21 and 22 March 2019 in Geneva. The Forum brought together more than 800 pan-European stakeholders to exchange experiences about the progress and challenges in the implementation of the SDGs.

The BKMC gladly accepted the invitation to this important event and formed part of the wide range of civil society representatives, who are advocating political action for the SDGs.

The conference was chaired by H.E. Ms Ogerta Manastirliu who is Albania’s Minister of Health and Social Protection. In welcoming remarks, Deputy UN Secretary-General Amina Mohammed stressed the importance of the Regional Fora to understand how we can increase ambition and accelerate the implementation of the SDGs. Ms Olga Algayerova, UNECE Executive Secretary and Under-Secretary-General, underscored the RFSD’s convening power in the process of sustainable development.

A High-Level Policy Segment served to present Voluntary National Reviews of UNECE countries and facilitate peer-learning among the government representatives.

The second day addressed SDG 4 (Quality Education), 8 (Decent Work and Economic Growth), 10 (Reduced Inequalities), 13 (Climate Action) and 16 (Peace, Justice and Strong Institutions) in a variety of focus events, round tables and side events. Fruitful discussions and meaningful exchange explored the interlinkages of the SDGs.

When it comes to SDG 4 Quality Education, for example, the following challenges were identified:

  • urban-rural gaps
  • education for the elderly
  • effectively drawing on digitalization
  • disparities based on income, location, gender, immigration or minority status and disability
  • integration of Global Citizenship Education (GCED) into curricula

A report will summarize the key messages from the UNECE RFSD 2019 and provide the official input from the UNECE region to the 2019 High-Level Political Forum (HLPF) which will be held between 9 July and 18 July in New York. The HLPF is the United Nations’ central platform for follow-up and review of the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development and the Sustainable Development Goals. The BKMC is pleased to have been an active part of the RFSD 2019 and have thereby contributed to the HLPF 2019.

MOU Signing between Bahrain and the Ban Ki-moon Centre

Last week, the Ban Ki-moon Centre welcomed a delegation from the Kingdom of Bahrain including H.E. Shaikh Hussam bin Essa Al Khalifa, the current President of His Royal Highness the Prime Minister’s Court.

The meeting included a briefing on the Ban Ki-moon Centre and its work as well as a memorandum of understanding (MOU) signing between the Centre and the Kingdom of Bahrain.

Bahrain seeks to support and collaborate with the Ban Ki-moon Centre in implementing the 2030 Agenda and the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). In 2007, the Kingdom established the Khalifa Bin Salman Award for Sustainable Development. Last year, Chairman Ban was awarded with this distinction.

Since the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs), Bahrain has been actively engaged for sustainable development. The Ban Ki-moon Centre is pleased to sign an MOU with the Kingdom and looks forward to fruitful collaboration for the SDGs!

“Everyone can change the world!” says Ban Ki-moon in the interview with the Austrian Red Cross

Ban Ki-moon Interview
Magazine “My Red Cross” by the Austrian Red Cross

How is the world going to look like in 50 years?

In 50 years sustainability has hopefully become the global norm. The world now has the largest generation of young people in history. I place great hopes in their power and positive activism to shape our future. They are part of the first generation that can end poverty and the last that can avoid the worst impacts of climate change. Hopefully, even before 50 years have passed, quality education will be provided to all, gender equality will become the standard, health and well-being will be guaranteed for each human being and all the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) will be achieved. It has to be an effort of everybody at all leaves to leave no one behind.

 

Are you afraid your children and grandchildren will have to live on a destroyed planet one day?

Climate change is the most pressing challenge we face as human beings today. It is not slowing down, and the clock is ticking. Natural disasters are becoming more and more frequent and devastating, from historic floods, fires, storms, tsunamis and earthquakes. To protect our planet for future generations, steps must be taken to both combat and to adapt to the changing climate and with accelerated action. It is our collective responsibility as global citizens to see that our planet remains inhabitable and safe for the generations to come.

 

There are more extreme weather events in the world and climate change seems to be speeding up. Do you think mankind has realized what is at stake?

Many of us are very aware of what is at stake, especially those who are making it their life’s work to mitigate and adapt to climate change. However, despite the many who are aware and active, some are choosing to turn a blind eye. This is troubling, particularly when it comes from national leaders. When the US and President Trump pulled-out of the Paris Climate agreement, this was deeply concerning. I have been speaking out that his vision is politically short-sighted, and economically irresponsible and scientifically wrong. So, he is standing on the wrong side of history. Despite this, I am encouraged and hopeful that the whole world will be united in moving ahead with this Paris Climate Change Agreement. It is the political and moral responsibility of our political leaders to support this.

 

You traveled to the US in 1962 with students from 42 different countries to visit the American Red Cross and meet president Kennedy. How did that influence you?

Thanks to the American Red Cross, I was given the opportunity to join students from 42 countries to travel across the United States visiting Red Cross chapters. This opened my eyes to the world. During the trip, I met then President John F. Kennedy, who said to us “there are no national boundaries; there is only a question of whether we can extend a helping hand.” This strong message has been engraved in my memory ever since and I continue to try my utmost to do my share as a global citizen to help those in need. All our helping hands are needed.

 

What are your feelings when you look back from our very different time with very different presidents?

The world has changed vastly since 1962. Since then, the world has faced rising global challenges. Leaders, in recent years, have turned towards nationalism and populism, putting up walls instead of extending helping hands. This is, plainly stated, not the way forward. Leaders must have and enlist a global vision in all that they do, seeing beyond their national borders. I have not met many that have a global vision. Nelson Mandela is one of the examples that comes to mind. Many around the world were greatly influenced by his selfless struggle for human dignity, equality and freedom.  He touched our lives in deeply personal ways.  At the same time, no one did more in our time to advance the values and aspirations of the United Nations.

 

You come from South Korea – and 80 percent of the people affected by natural disasters live in Asia. Who should start to accomplish the turnaround in climate politics?

Natural disasters are having a major impact around the world and indeed Asia is majorly affected. China has a great responsibility in the region as well as in the world in leading the turnaround in climate politics. Recently, the country has shown great leadership in cleaning up the air and has contributed greatly to the Green Climate Fund. Additionally, China reached its 2020 carbon emission target three years ahead of schedule with the help of the country’s carbon trading system. China will be key to getting other countries to comply with the Paris Climate Agreement.

 

What can individuals do to change the world?

I firmly believe that individuals have the power to change the world for the better, be it at a local, regional, or global level. Women make up half the world and half the world’s population are under the age of 25; therefore, it is vital to empower these groups to act as global citizens, showing solidarity and compassion towards the challenges the world faces. At the beginning of 2018 we founded the Ban Ki-moon Centre for Global Citizens in Vienna, Austria together with my Co-chair Former Federal President of the Republic of Austria Heinz Fischer for this exact purpose. In the world today, there are plenty of people with passion, yet not enough with compassion. This is unfortunate, so we must educate the world’s youth to understand that their actions have ripple effects on other around the world. We must teach empathy alongside math and history, for without this and a global vision, we will not succeed in creating a sustainable future for us all, leaving no one behind.

 

What is necessary to achieve a turnaround – does the planet need a new economic system to find a path towards sustainability?

To achieve the turnaround, there are many steps the world needs to take. These may be at the systemic level, but also at the social and individual levels. Businesses need to understand the economic and additional benefits that come from operating more sustainably. The system may not need to change, but the structures within it and leadership can be transformative. The Global Compact has proven that companies who adapt to more sustainable practices will have a “win-win” situation as their success requires stable economies and healthy, skilled and educated workers, among other factors. And sustainable companies experience increased brand trust and investor support.

Additionally, engaging women more in the economic system will also cause a transformation of the global economy and vastly impact sustainability. When more women work, economies prosper and grow. An increase in female labour force participation and a reduction in the gap between women’s and men’s labour force participation, leads to faster economic growth.

These are just a few of the ways in which the turnaround, with regards to the economy, can be achieved.

 

You say global issues need global solutions, and that it takes responsibility and global citizenship. But isn’t growing nationalism around the world – and blaming globalisation for problems – preventing just that?

Nationalism is truly the antithesis of the notion of global citizenship and it is hampering our progress towards building a sustainable planet. Indeed, global solutions are necessary. However, when world leaders and nations retreat into their own bubbles, we are not able to have the difficult discussions needed to make progress towards achieving the 2030 Agenda and meeting the challenges we face today. Therefore, multilateralism must continue to be fostered wherever possible. We need to keep these avenues of discourse open.

Read the magazine (German) here: http://epaper.roteskreuz.at/MRK1Wien2019/

Photo: Peter Lechner

 

 

GEEF 2019 Opening Remarks Ban Ki-moon

OPENING REMARKS

GEEF OPENING SESSION – Ban Ki-moon
Yonsei University, Korea
14th February 2019

His Excellency Sebastian Kurz, Chancellor of Austria;

His Excellency Heinz Fischer, Former President of Austria;

Her Excellency Helen Clark, former Prime Minster of New Zealand;

Dr. Armida Salsiah Alisjahbana, Executive Secretary of UNESCAP;

Dr. Mahmoud Mohieldin, Senior Vice President of the World Bank Group;

Honorable Park Won-soon, Mayor of Seoul Metropolitan Government;

Her Excellency Lee Mikyung, President of KOICA;

Dr. Natalia Kanem, Executive Director of UNFPA;

Welcome to the second annual Global Engagement and Empowerment Forum on Sustainable Development.

During my ten-year tenure as United Nations Secretary General, one of United Nations’ most important accomplishments was establishing the 17 Sustainable Development Goals, known as the SDGs. In 2015, the UN member states showed their devotion and adopted this new vision for sustainable development based on a single principle: “leave no one behind.”

Leaders from all around the world embodied this principle with collective commitment to leave no one behind in the SDGs. These goals are people-centered development that focuses on progression against the existing challenges such as poverty, inequality, public health, gender equality, and many other. Today, the world is changing fast and the journey of achieving inclusive and sustainable development cannot be done alone. That is why leaving no one behind requires a transformation in humanity through communities coming together as one global partnership.

Today, GEEF 2019 continues its momentum from the previously successful GEEF 2018. Last year, GEEF 2018 provided a platform that displayed a global network with thousands of people in attendance. Enthusiastic and dedicated people were witnessed, assembled, and cooperated together to ensure the mutual pursuit of the SDGs.

This year’s GEEF 2019 will serve as a platform that goes beyond simply sharing and extending ideas. As the 17 SDGs emphasize the 2030 Agenda’s five key elements (planet, people, prosperity, peace, and partnership), also known as the 5P’s, GEEF 2019 will offer in-depth discussions of long-term and specific plans to integrate these elements into promoting the concept of sustainability, sustainable development, and social equity.

 

Distinguished Guests, Ladies and Gentlemen,

Please allow me to conclude that achieving the SDGs by 2030 may seem as a never-ending mission. Yet, year 2030 is soon to come. Therefore, a global legacy needs to be addressed for the betterment of our world. The whole process will be a continuing challenge. Currently, challenges remain but progress are shown. Progress is visible but is still uneven. For example, the 2018 SDG Report stated that poverty gap still remains in which there are approximately 38 million more hungry people in the world, rising from 777 million in 2015 to 815 million in 2016.

Despite this reversal result, I still believe that we are ahead in the right direction. I am also confident in all of our ongoing efforts and commitments that can ultimately achieve our goals of the 2030 global agenda.

 In this regard, a collective effort is needed to promote a global collaborative partnership among all stakeholders at every level of our society. We must work together. We must all play our parts in this progression to become more effective, cohesive, and accountable. I urge you to take full responsibility, join in our efforts as Global Citizens, and contribute towards building a global community, sustainable cooperation, and a world with a better future for all.

 

 

Photo: Arno Melicharek

GEEF 2019 Welcome Remarks Heinz Fischer

WELCOME REMARKS

GEEF OPENING SESSION – HEINZ FISCHER
Yonsei University, Korea
14th February 2019 10:30 – 12:10 

Your Excellency Austrian Chancellor Sebastian Kurz,

My Dear Friend Ban Ki-moon,

Your Excellency Helen Clark, former Prime Minister of New Zealand,

Your Excellency President Kim Yong-Hak, Yonsei University,

Distinguished friends and students,

Ladies and gentlemen,

It is a great pleasure and honor for me to be addressing you today on the occasion of the Second Global Engagement and Empowerment Forum at Yonsei University here in Korea.

I am happy to be back in Korea at this University and want to thank the University for hosting this landmark conference for the second time.

With more than 1,400 participants and a hundred speakers from more than 70 different countries, GEEF 2019 will deliberate the theme: “A Call to Action: Empower People, Share Prosperity.” At the Forum, we have identified pivotal dimensions towards implementing the Sustainable Development Goals and the 2030 Agenda.

Our Ban Ki-moon Centre team in Vienna enjoyed great cooperation with the team here in Seoul in preparing for this Forum. Thank you all for your hard work! It is well invested work to serve the Sustainable Development Goals and to do it in the global interest of peace and in the interest of empowering young people and women.

Looking into the audience in this hall, I see hundreds of young people bursting with potential and energy. This is what we need to carry the message of engagement and empowerment for global citizenship forward.

Youth, namely male and female citizens under 30, now represent over 50% of the world population; the largest percentage in history.

Despite this reality, youth globally remain disadvantaged when it comes to political participation, access to the labor markets, housing, education, and other issues.

At present, about 63 million young people are unemployed and 141 million young people are trapped in working poverty. Additionally, the competition for good education and good jobs is getting tougher and tougher.

Yet youth have better means of communication and activism at their fingertips than ever before. The future of the whole world is dependent on the active engagement and connection of youth worldwide.

Therefore, the Ban Ki-moon Centre focuses its attention on empowering and ensuring that it is YOUR TIME and that YOUR rights are upheld, and that YOU can actively shape the future. This is essential to achieving sustainable development.

Women and girls face additional barriers to their participation and overall prosperity.

The Global Risk Report 2019, published some weeks ago, tells us in addition that 1 in 3 women globally suffer from violence during their lifetime including intimate partner violence. This is not acceptable.

A Global Citizen is not defined by gender, age, race, nationality or religion, but rather by the actions that unite us as human beings.

The Sustainable Development Goals represent this common ground and the shared challenges that we face as humankind.

I am personally impressed by Korea and the speed of its economic growth and development. I am sure this success story can be attributed at least in part to the emphasis on education, the level and room for innovation, and the dedication to learn and to work.

Ladies and Gentlemen,

It has now been a year since the Ban Ki-moon Centre for Global Citizens in Vienna was founded by the initiative of Ban Ki-moon. We have achieved a lot in this first year.

We look forward to 2019 and to continuing to scale and pursue our mission to empower youth and women worldwide to act as global citizens in a peaceful, prosperous, and fair world on the basis of human rights.

We thank all of you for your engagement, energy and inspiration as global citizens of today, tomorrow and beyond.

Thank you!

 

Photo: IGEE

“We are at an inflection point,” Ban Ki-moon speaks out.

Ban Ki-moon Centre for Global Citizens’ Co-chair Ban Ki-moon delivered a keynote and had a panel discussion at an event hosted by a leading French agricultural cooperative group InVivo on December 19th, 2018.

“We are at a point of historical inflection in demographic and environmental levels,” said Ban.

InVivo aims to help French agriculture and agricultural cooperation to regain their rightful place in the global food value chain. CEO Thierry Blandinières ‏of InVivo said that the company is committed to bringing solutions for the challenges that the country and the world face. In order to achieve the sustainable development of the planet and human population, InVivo focuses on four fields of expertise: Agriculture, Animal Nutrition and Health, Retail and Wine.

Learn more about the group here: https://www.invivo-group.com/en

Photo: Jeudi Photo

Global Compact Network Thailand officially launches and encourages private sectors to adopt sustainable policies

Ban Ki-moon Centre for Global Citizens’ Co-chair Ban Ki-moon delivered a keynote at the official launch of Global Compact Network Thailand (GCNT), setting off private-sector collaboration for country’s sustainable development, in Bangkok, Thailand on December 14th, 2018. Founded in 2017, GCNT is currently joined by 40 leading Thai corporates whose common purpose is to facilitate balanced and sustainable economic, social and environmental development in accordance with United Nations Global Compact — a collaborative network of private sectors that encourages businesses worldwide to adopt sustainable and socially responsible policies with more than 13,000 members in 160 countries.

“By assembling leaders from the Thai private sector to form a Global Compact local network, the critical work that you are undertaking to alight your business with the ideals of the United Nations has my deep respect. Our world is going through pronounced changes resulting in elevated uncertainties and new risks. Keep working to make business a force for good. Together, we can respond to the urgency of our global challenges and construct a better tomorrow,” said Ban.

GCNT‘s primary mission in 2019 is to provide private organizations with necessary guidance to ensure that they recognize the role of business case for the achievement of sustainable development and enter the GCNT membership to create high-impact collaborations.

President Suphachai Chearavanont of GCNT says,

“Regarding the four major principles of sustainability, Thailand will start with human rights because it is the critical issue that contributes to the country’s credibility and international economic relations. At GCNT, we realize that human rights is a very sensitive subject and concerns various aspects, including child labors, foreign workers, female labors, welfare, and several other lesser-known issues. Therefore, it is important for us to identify human rights as an urgent priority that needs to be addressed within a short time frame. Apart from taking the role of center in sharing knowledge and opening up learning opportunity for members through activities as previously said, we also would like to invite business organizations across the country to join us in building a strong network capable of impacting a concrete change in the society, with aim to attain 100 members by end of 2019,”

Read more about the launch event and the network here: https://read.bi/2EBCK86

Ban Ki-moon Centre Participates in Event on the SDGs Featuring Her Royal Highness Crown Princess Victoria of Sweden

This week, the Ban Ki-moon Centre featured at an event entitled, “The 2030 Agenda – From Global Goals to Local Implementation” hosted by the Swedish Embassy in Vienna. BKMC CEO Monika Froehler moderated the event and led a discussion on the SDGs and local implementation in Austria as well as around the world.

The event began with welcoming remarks from H.E. Ambassador Mikaela Kumlin Granit of the Swedish Embassy followed by a powerful opening statement by Her Royal Highness Crown Princess Victoria of Sweden that set the stage for the discussion that followed. Her H.R.H Princess Victoria said:

“The implementation of the 2030 Agenda is a high priority for the Swedish government, but also for me personally. As advocate of the Global Goals for Sustainable Development, I am delighted to see the commitment with which Austria is working to implement the Agenda. Progress is indeed being made, but now we need to step up the pace.”

Following the opening statement, Foreign Minister Miroslav Lajčák of Slovakia, who is also the former President of the United Nations General Assembly, delivered a keynote in which he stressed the importance of empowering youth and women. He stated:

“Half of this planet are people under 30, and half of this planet are women,” and “our youth are not the future generation; they are here now, and we need to listen to them now.”

Minister Lajčák also thanked the Swedish government for its support of the implementation of  SDG 14, “Life Below Water.”

After the keynote, a panel discussion was moderated by BKMC CEO Monika Froehler, featuring DG Li Yong of United Nations Industrial Development Organization (UNIDO), Director-General Désirée Schweitzer of the Department for Development Cooperation at the Austrian Foreign Ministry, VP Ulrike Rabmer-Koller of the Austrian Economic Chambers and Director Monika Langthaler of the R20 Austrian World Summit. Experts from Global ResponsibilitySustainable Energy for All, and the IKEA Foundation also shared their expert insights.

Overall, the event emphasized the need for more advocacy, finance, and innovation to achieve implementation of the SDGs and further global collaboration to reach the most marginalized communities. During the Q&A session, the “Youth SDG Advocates” provided by the Ban Ki-moon Centre for Global Citizens asked questions about the role that the international community should play in advancing the SDGs and how youth can be engaged and represented.

Check out the full video of the event below!

Gepostet von Schwedische Botschaft Wien – Embassy of Sweden Vienna am Mittwoch, 28. November 2018

 

HRH Premier confers Khalifa Bin Salman Award for Sustainable Development on Ban Ki-moon

On November 18th, upon his visit to Bahrain to participate in the GCC Health Insurance Conference, Co-chair Ban Ki-moon received the “HRH Prince Khalifa Bin Salman Award for Sustainable Development 2018” by His Royal Highness Prime Minister Prince Khalifa bin Salman Al Khalifa. The award was conferred in recognition of his efforts and contributions in serving humanity and promoting global peace, security and achieving sustainable development goals.

HRH the Premier congratulated Ban on winning the award, noting his accomplishments and contributions that enriched the collective international community’s efforts to achieve the universal goals of humanity. His Royal Highness affirmed that Ban Ki-moon has meritoriously deserved the award in consideration of his long career efforts of boosting the international cooperation vis-à-vis sustainable development goals. HRH the Premier noted Ban’s efforts focusing on the MDGs and accelerating the momentum of assisting countries and peoples in this regard and paving solid ground on which countries, including Bahrain, relied in their efforts of implementing the SDGs.

Source: http://www.newsofbahrain.com/bahrain/48780.html