Regions of Russia and the UN Sustainable Development Goals
The Russian Regions and Sustainable Development Goals program has been implemented by the United Nations Russian Association with the support of the Russian Ministry of Foreign Affairs since 2009. This is a unique project that creates a precedent of “oncoming movement”, when not only organizations and representatives of the UN system form an international opinion on the situation in Russian regions, but also Russian regions come up with initiatives in a global dimension and can shape international policy.
Purpose of the Program
The main goal of the Program, on the one hand, is to popularize the ideas of the UN in the territories of the regions of Russia, to convey the meaning, significance and, most importantly, the direct benefits for regional development of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), previously the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) adopted by the UN; on the other hand, the goal of the Program is to create a mechanism for the real participation of Russian regions in global governance based on the UN system.
Today, SDG indicators are one of the important international criteria for the investment attractiveness of regions. Thus, attracting investments to the constituent entities of the Russian Federation directly depends on their success in the implementation of the 2030 Agenda. “Inscribing” into the program field of the UN system is the main mechanism for using world economic and financial resources in order to develop the constituent entities of the Russian Federation.
Components of the Program
- compiling and publishing the report “Regions of Russia and the Sustainable Development Goals” (each issue of the Report presents from one to five regions);
- projects of Russian regions aimed at the implementation of the Agenda 2030;
- presentations of editions of the Report and regional projects at meetings of the heads of Russian regions with the UN Secretary General at the UN headquarters in New York, with the heads of the UN regional offices.
- presentation events at the UN headquarters in New York, at the sites in the UN offices in Geneva, Vienna, Nairobi.
- meetings between representatives of Russian regions and UN specialized agencies to establish and/or develop cooperation in the framework of achieving the SDGs.
Directions of work
The Program already has a number of brilliant results and 16 participating regions. During the MDG period, 12 participated: Irkutsk Region, Sakha (Yakutia), Yugra, Karachay-Cherkess Republic, Astrakhan Region, Kamchatka Territory, Tambov Region, Krasnodar Territory, Krasnoyarsk Territory, Moscow Region, Kursk Region, Omsk Region. With the adoption of the SDGs, only four regions have managed to participate in the Program so far: the Sverdlovsk Region, Moscow, the Republic of Tatarstan and the Samara Region.
All these regions have demonstrated excellent projects in the logic of sustainable development and continue to work on them. They adequately represented their regions at the UN Headquarters and at the meeting with the UN Secretary General. In 2018-2021, four regions participated in the program - Moscow, the Sverdlovsk Region, the Republic of Tatarstan and the Samara Region.
In 2018, Moscow and the Sverdlovsk Region participated in the Program. Undoubtedly, regions that are strong in terms of SDGs. For example, in 2018, Moscow ranked first in the UN ranking of e-services indexes, outperforming 40 world capitals. In the same year, the Investment Development Agency of Tatarstan received the UN Award for outstanding achievements in stimulating investments in industries that will bring social and economic benefits and help countries achieve sustainable development goals. And Yekaterinburg became a candidate city for the right to host the Expo-2025 World Exhibition and, after participating in the UN RAS Program, won the right to host the World Cities Day held under the auspices of UN-Habitat in 2019.
The presentation of the sixth edition of the Report, in which the Republic of Tatarstan took part, took place in two stages: on November 27, 2019, in the building of the Palais des Nations in Geneva, at a meeting with the Director General of the UN office in Geneva, T.D. Valovaya and on February 3, 2020 at the UN Headquarters (New York) at the meeting of the President of the Republic of Tatarstan Rustam Minnikhanov with the UN Secretary General António Guterres, as well as during a side event on the sidelines of the 74th regular session of the UN General Assembly. In 2021, the presentation of the seventh edition of the Report was held at the UN Office in Geneva, which presents the achievements of the Samara region on the path to the implementation of the 2030 Agenda.
On December 6, 2021, the presentation of the seventh edition of the UN RAS report “Regions of Russia and the UN Sustainable Development Goals” took place in the building of the Palais des Nations in Geneva. In the new edition of the Report, special attention is paid to the achievements of the Samara Region on the way to the implementation of the 2030 Agenda. The presentation of the seventh edition of the Report took place in several stages, the first of which was the meeting of the delegation of the Samara region, headed by Governor D.I.Azarov, with the Director General of the UN Office in Geneva, T.D.Valova. Then, at the Palais des Nations, the presentation event itself took place, in which representatives of the diplomatic corps, international and intergovernmental organizations, leaders of business and civil society took part.
In the Russian Association for UN Assistance, the program "Regions of Russia and the Sustainable Development Goals" is given a special place and considerable attention is paid. Now work is underway to further develop the program and include in it such components as seminars on sustainable development for the participating regions, the creation of SDG laboratories in the regions of the Russian Federation, as well as a separate series of activities within the framework of the 2030 Agenda for the regions, depending on their characteristics.