Dr Bandar Hajjar, President of IsDB Group addressed the 12th SDGs Open Dialogue “Development in a Post COVID-19 World: Moving Beyond Recovery Towards 2030.
Dr Hajjar welcomed the keynote speaker Mr Achim Steiner, the United Nations Development Program Administrator, stressing that our world today is grappling with an unprecedented crisis of monumental proportions. He noted that COVID-19 pandemic is a turning point in our life, and for development activities, it is going to be completely different.
Dr Hajjar stated that we need a paradigm shift in the way we approach development beyond COVID-19, as we have to focus on the most vulnerable populations by addressing essential issues such as:
- Building the capacity for more resilient societies, particularly the Least Developed Countries where issues of inequality and inclusion are of paramount importance.
- Capitalizing on new technologies and employing STI approaches to identify and deal with problematic realities. The digital disruption should offer opportunities for development beyond COVID-19.
- Thriving to be more effective and more efficient in everything we do; most importantly in our case is how we mobilize resources and deploy them transparently and effectively.
Mr Achim Steiner showcased in his presentation, different aspects and considerations of the pandemic, its current trends, future expectations and the effects it will have on the landscape of socio-economic development in the long run. He said, ‘the year 2020 will be a watershed in the history books. COVID19 is a health crisis, it is an economic crisis. For the first time in 30 years, we are seeing human development going down. The schooling of 2.5 billion children is affected globally.’
Mr Steiner added, ‘recognizing the importance of multilateralism in ensuring a coordinated and effective response to the diverse needs of Member Countries. The IsDB Group is teaming up with international and regional organisations including UN agencies to devise tailored intervention towards building the resilience of countries to be able to respond, mitigate and recover from this pandemic and its ramification