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UNECE joins the International Coalition for Green Development on the Belt and Road

Published: 25 June 2018

The Belt and Road Initiative, which aims to enhance connectivity between countries stretching from Asia to Europe and Africa, has enormous potential to accelerate development, drive trade and boost economic growth. To fully harness the benefits of this ambitious initiative, it will be essential to ensure it is also a force for environmental sustainability.

To support this objective, UNECE has joined the International Coalition for Green Development on the Belt and Road. The Coalition is an open, inclusive and voluntary international network which will bring together partners’ environmental expertise to ensure that the Belt and Road brings long-term, planet-friendly growth in support of the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development.

Co-initiated by the United Nations Environment Programme (UN Environment) and the Ministry of Ecology and Environment of China, the Coalition’s mission is to integrate sustainable development, in particular environmental sustainability, across the five priorities of the Belt and Road Initiative: policy coordination, facilities connectivity, unimpeded trade, financial integration, and people-to-people bonds. It aims to promote international consensus and collective actions on the development of a Green Belt and Road and the achievement of the Sustainable Development Goals. The Coalition will be a multi-stakeholder platform, bringing together partners from International Organizations, governments, the private sector, academia, civil society and other stakeholder groups.

The Coalition is scheduled to be officially launched by the end of 2018. UNECE is stepping in early in the preparatory stages, and looks forward to offering its substantial expertise, experience and best practices in areas including biodiversity and ecosystem management, renewable energy and energy efficiency, sustainable transportation, green finance and investment, green innovation and technology, improvement of environmental quality, green cities, and environmental information sharing and Big Data. UNECE is also proposing to add sustainable trade as a new Thematic Partnership within the Coalition, for which UNECE could be a leading partner given its work in trade facilitation, market access and as secretariat to the UN Centre for Trade Facilitation and e-Business (UN/CEFACT). 

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