Dear First Vice-President Timmermans, We, European Civil Society Organisations working on both international and domestic EU policies across a variety of sectors ranging from Youth, Sustainability, Social Justice, Fair Trade, International cooperation, Health, Culture, Environment, Gender Equality, Migration, Climate Change, Local Democracy, Human Rights and Media Development, are writing to you in your capacity as Vice-President of the European Commission, mandated with the horizontal responsibility for sustainable development.
At the UN Summit in New York taking place from 25-27 of September, Heads of State and Government will adopt the universal, people- and planet-centered 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development (‘Agenda 2030’). As European civil society, we now expect the EU to match the ambition of this Agenda with a clear EU implementation strategy, which reflects the integrated, interlinked and comprehensive nature of the Agenda, in order to ensure well-being for all within planetary boundaries.
We welcome the mapping exercise that you have initiated within the Commission to analyse where the EU has appropriate policies in place to implement Agenda 2030 and where there are gaps. This exercise is a first important step in order to elaborate an EU strategy to implement Agenda 2030. The EU strategy must build on your mapping exercise and cover all Goals and targets of the Agenda.
The development and implementation of such a strategy should happen through a meaningful participatory process, reaching out to marginalised people. We therefore urge you to make the results of both the mapping and the subsequent analysis public and to hold a consultation on the next steps with civil society in all its diversity.
Lastly, we call for the creation of a robust, effective, participatory and transparent monitoring and accountability mechanism at EU level to guide and review implementation of the strategy, to analyse progress and redirect efforts as necessary.
We would welcome the opportunity to meet and discuss our ideas further with you, after the UN Sustainable Development Summit in New York, at which a number of us will be present, and we remain at your disposal to provide any additional information needed. We wish you great success in these crucial discussions.
Beyond 2015 Europe, CIVICUS, Civil Society Alliance, Climate Action Network Europe (CAN Europe), CONCORD – the European Confederation for Relief and Development, Cooperatives Europe, Culture Action Europe, Deutsche Stiftung Weltbevölkerung (DSW), European Disability Forum (EDF), European Environmental Bureau (EEB), European Network of Political Foundations (ENoP), European Public Health Alliance (EPHA), European Women’s Lobby (EWL), European Youth Forum (EYF), Fair Trade Advocacy Office (FTAO), Global Call to Action against Poverty Europe (GCAP Europe), Global Forum for Media Development (GFMD), Women in Europe for a Common Future (WECF), Women’s Major Group