A Path Towards the SDGs Financing Ecosystem in Bosnia and Herzegovina
New UN Joint Programme on Financing Sustainable Development in Bosnia and Herzegovina Launched with the BiH Ministry of Finance and Treasury.
In 2015, Bosnia and Herzegovina (BiH) joined other United Nations Member States in agreeing a commonly shared vision of peace and prosperity for the people and the planet – the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development and the 17 Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). BiH signed on and committed to work on making the 17 SDGs a reality. Five years on, this work became more important than ever as we collectively try to address the challenges of the COVID-19 pandemic.
Bosnia and Herzegovina already has a solid ground for it. Over the last two years, with a direct engagement of key public and numerous private sector stakeholders, the key document that will support implementation of Agenda 2030 in Bosnia and Herzegovina was finalized. The Framework for Sustainable Development Goals has already been adopted by governments of Brčko District BiH, the Federation of Bosnia and Herzegovina and Republika Srpska, while its adoption by the Council of Ministers of Bosnia and Herzegovina is expected in March 2021.
To complement this Framework, the United Nations in BiH have launched a new programme aimed at supporting the governments at all levels in the country in defining models and creating solutions for financing the achievement of SDGs. This programme, predominantly funded by the Joint UN Fund for Sustainable Development Goals, amounts to 1,3 million USD. Recognizing the importance of the path towards financing sustainable development, the BiH Council of Ministers endorsed the programme, which was subsequently signed by the BiH Minister of Finance and Treasury on 30 December 2020.
While the SDGs Framework is envisaged to be operationalised and implemented through strategic documents at various government levels in BiH, there is a recognition that achieving the Sustainable Development Goals in the next decade will not be possible only through government financing; particularly in the context of new realities caused by the COVID-19 pandemic.
The Agenda 2030 is an ambitious agenda even for most advanced countries in the world and Bosnia and Herzegovina, like other countries in the world, will need to explore other ways to raise financing from alternative sources. These could include those that can be mobilized from partnerships with private sector, investors, diaspora, international and domestic financing institutions and donor community to ensure gradual but steady achievement of the SDG targets in the next decade.
“The current decade is the Decade of Action for the SDGs. Bosnia and Herzegovina has an opportunity to deliver a greener, fairer economy and society by basing the recovery from COVID-19 on the SDGs. The UN and its partners are pleased to have launched today a country-wide platform for dialogue and partnerships dedicated to identifying financing solutions for sustainable development in BiH.” said Dr. Ingrid Macdonald, the UN Resident Coordinator in Bosnia and Herzegovina.
Together with partners from the ministries of finance and other line ministries, six UN agencies - UN Women, UNICEF, WHO, ILO, UNESCO and UNDP - will seek to support the governments in the country in conducting a comprehensive assessment of existing financial flows supporting sustainable development and defining long term directions and innovative financial instruments for sustainable development financing. Support will also be provided to relevant institutions in the area of health, education and employment to optimize and strategically re-channel public funds towards sustainable development priorities in these areas.
With the SDGs Framework in place, and an outlined path towards ensuring financing for sustainable development, Bosnia and Herzegovina is joining the Decade of Action to reach the SDGs.