Second SDG Dialogue Forum in Austria

PeopleOther ♦ Published: October 10, 2022; 23:11 ♦ (Vindobona)

The Austrian Federal Administration, SDG Watch Austria and the Ban Ki-moon Centre for Global Citizens 2022 organized the second SDG Dialogue Forum in Vienna. Against the backdrop of the current crises in the world, the second SDG Dialogue Forum focused on cooperation between politics, civil society, media and NGOs.

Federal Minister Karoline Edtstadler (2nd from left), Federal Minister Johannes Rauch (l.), Secretary General Peter Launsky-Tieffenthal (5th from left) and Gerd Müller (UNIDO) (r.) participated in the 2nd SDG Dialogue Forum Austria. / Picture: © Bundeskanzleramt (BKA) / Florian Schrötter

The SDG Dialogue Forum, organized by the Federal Administration, SDG Watch Austria and the Ban Ki-moon Centre for Global Citizens, is dedicated to the implementation of the 2030 Agenda and its 17 Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) together with experts from administration, business, civil society and academia.

The war in Ukraine, the climate and energy crisis, the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, but also the current inflation as well as rising poverty and inequalities worldwide highlight common responsibility to achieve the goals.

"Sustainable development is more than just a goal, it is our responsibility for the planet and future generations," Chancellery Minister Karoline Edtstadler quoted UN Secretary-General António Guterres in her statement at a press conference on the occasion of the 2nd SDG Dialogue Forum, held at the Federal Chancellery together with Federal Minister Leonore Gewessler, Director-General of UNIDO Gerd Müller and Managing Director of ÖKOBÜRO Thomas Alge.

"I am pleased that we are dedicating ourselves to a topic that might be lost in the crises of the present, namely the Sustainable Development Goals. Their implementation can only succeed if politics, civil society, NGOs and the media work together. The SDGs are important to the Austrian federal government; for us, they are a vision and a compass for the future," Edtstadler explained. The SDGs, which were adopted by the United Nations back in 2015, was adopted by the federal government in 2016 and still "provide answers to the current crises," she said. "If we think of the COVID-19 pandemic, for example, the third goal 'health and well-being' applies. But also, when we think of the Russian war of aggression on Ukraine, the 16th goal 'peace, justice and strong institutions' applies."

Austria ranks 5th in SDG implementation

In Austria, "important milestones" have already been reached in this regard, according to the Austrian Government. In 2020, for example, it presented its first voluntary national implementation report, and it participated in the high-level forum at the United Nations in July 2022, reporting on all that Austria had already implemented. "Austria has now launched the eco-social tax reform. We have initiated the biggest care reform in many decades and launched a climate ticket so that mobility and climate protection are no longer in conflict. And Austria is indeed a pioneer, as we have been ranked fifth by the Bertelsmann Foundation's report when it comes to implementing the SDGs successfully," Karoline Edtstadler expressed her delight.

"I would like to thank all those who are working here in the interests of future generations and making sure that we manage to set up the world sustainably for the future as well," said the federal minister, who informed that work was currently underway on the second national implementation report.

"Life and the world are in crisis. We have been busy from the very beginning helping people weather crises well. It is precisely at this time that I think it is essential to take a longer-term view of the future, to make plans, and to try, through cohesion and cooperation as well as communication, to find solutions to problems that may not arise at all," Karoline Edtstadler concluded.

Federal Chancellery of Austria

SDG Watch Austria