Iraq announces the release of its second national voluntary report on sustainable development for the year 2021

العراق، يعلن عن اطلاق تقريره الطوعي الوطني الثاني للتنمية المستدامة لعام 2021

Mr. Minister of Planning, Dr. Khaled Batal Al-Najm, delivered the speech of Iraq to the high-level political forum of the United Nations, held in New York.

In his speech, the Minister announced the launch of the second national voluntary report on the achievement of sustainable development goals, entitled “Iraq… Returning to the Development Path”. He explained that this report represents an attempt to review Iraq’s development experience and the approach followed in achieving sustainable development goals. He also highlighted the series of national consultations in which many social and economic entities, youth and women groups, civil society organizations, and government institutions participated, as well as professors and experts from universities, to prepare this report. The report focused on important tracks, including administrative decentralization and the analysis of the experience of 7 selected provinces to shed light on their sustainable development performance.

The Minister went on to say that the voluntary report included a number of internal and external messages. The internal messages focused on the fact that youth represent the engine of change and development, as they are the peak of the demographic dividend. It also emphasized the need to create positive competition at the level of local governments and for everyone to work together to enhance community security in the face of challenges, especially the COVID-19 pandemic. As for the external messages, they emphasized the importance of international partnerships and concerted efforts to stay on the right development track.

In his speech, the Minister reviewed the efforts of the Iraqi government to regain the development path through preparing responsive plans for the repercussions, addressing problems and challenges, including the White Paper, the National Recovery Document, the plan for the return of displaced persons, and a set of strategic decisions by the Council of Ministers. He affirmed that the implementation of sustainable development goals depends primarily on the integration of partners and stakeholders, especially youth, in the development process, and the provision of efficient and responsive financing frameworks through the restructuring of the federal budget, attracting foreign investment, and involving the private sector.

It is worth mentioning that Iraq has previously presented its first national voluntary report on sustainable development in 2019, and this year it is presenting its second voluntary report among 45 countries that have submitted voluntary reports.

The report was prepared in cooperation with the United Nations Development Programme in Iraq, and a number of experts from universities participated in its writing, including Dr. Adnan Yassin, Dr. Wafa Al-Mahdawi, and Dr. Hassan Latif. Dr. Maher Hammad Johain, the Deputy Minister of Planning, chaired the report preparation team, which included a number of department heads, general directors, and experts at the Ministry of Planning.