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Eighth Session of the Africa Regional Forum on Sustainable Development

Building forward better: A green, inclusive and resilient Africa poised to achieve the 2030 Agenda and Agenda 2063
3 March, 2022 to 5 March, 2022
Kigali, Republic of Rwanda

Introduction

The ARFSD is an annual multi-stakeholder platform organized jointly by the United Nations Economic Commission of Africa (ECA) and the Host Government in collaboration with the African Union Commission, the African Development Bank and other entities of the United Nations System. It brings together Ministers, senior officials, experts and practitioners from UN member States, private sector, civil society, academia and UN organisations. Accordingly, the 2022 Forum will be organized jointly by the Economic Commission for Africa (ECA) and Government of the Republic of Rwanda in collaboration with partners outlined above.

The ARFSD like all the other regional forums on sustainable development is mandated by the General Assembly of the United Nations. The regional forum is one of the three mechanisms mandated to follow-up, review and catalyse actions to achieve the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) of the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development adopted by UN member States in September 2015.

The other mechanisms are the Voluntary National Reviews and the High-Level Political Forum on Sustainable Development (HLPF) at the global level. 

Unique to Africa, the ARFSD undertakes integrated follow-up and review of the SDGs and goals of the African Union Agenda 2063. This is because for Africa, the two Agenda provide a synergistic framework for achieving inclusive and people-centred sustainable development in the region.

The ARFSD also provides a platform for peer learning including on Voluntary National Reviews (VNRs) and Voluntary Local Review (VLRs) by subnational entities.

The Forum adopts two main outcomes:

  • Summary and key messages: This is Africa’s collective input to the HLPF on all the deliberations of the Forum. This outcome document consists of Africa’s priorities and policy recommendation to accelerate implementation of the two Agendas.
  • Declaration of the Forum: This takes the name of the host city and presents an African collective position on specific issues of importance for the Bureau and the Chair of the Bureau, following the deliberations of the participants of the ARFSD.

A concise synthesis of these outcomes is presented to HLPF by the Chair of the Bureau of the ARFSD. In this case Rwanda will present Africa’s position at the high-level segment of the 2022 HLPF to be held in New York, from Tuesday, 5 July, to Thursday, 7 July and Monday, 11 July to Friday, 15 July, and Monday, 18 July 2022.

Seven sessions of the Regional Forum have been held to date. Currently, the Republic of Congo is the chair of the 5-member Bureau  of the of the seventh session of the Regional Forum, held in Brazzaville, Congo in in March 2021.

The Eighth Session of Africa Regional Forum on Sustainable Development (ARFSD-8) to be held in 2022.

Notwithstanding the progress in the implementation of the two agendas, available assessments show that countries are off track to achieve the SDGs and goals of Agenda 2063 within the set time frame. COVID-19 has further undermined progress to achieve the SDGs and goals of Agenda 2063.The decade 2021 to 2030 (dubbed the Decade of Action and Delivery on Sustainable Development) presents an opportunity and a window of hope to dramatically speed up the pace and expand the scale of implementation to deliver the regional and global goals alongside recovery from the COVID-19 crisis. Previous session of the Regional Forum and meeting of HLPF and SDGs Summit helped to spotlight several areas in which ambitious and transformative actions taken will drive up progress across multiple goals. 

ARFSD-7 (2021) adopted key recommendations in the form of key messages and the Brazzaville Declaration with the view to accelerating implementation of the 2030 Agenda and Agenda 2063 .  These outcomes were presented to the 2021 meeting of the HLPF held in New York, in July 2021. The HLPF undertakes global level review and follow-up on the implementation of the 2030 agenda and adopts a ministerial declaration to inform actions to accelerate implementation across the globe.

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