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Bahamas to enter talks with CAPRI on Sustainable Development Goals

Senior Business Reporter

Published: Feb 17, 2017

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Prime Minister Perry Christie is expected to meet soon with Dr. Damien King, co-executive director of the Caribbean Policy Research Institute (CAPRI), in a bid to induct The Bahamas into the Sustainable Development Goals (SDG) Dashboard, which classifies all participating countries according to the progress made towards SDG targets, and does not, so far, include many Caribbean countries.

The 28th Inter-Sessional Meeting of Heads of Government of the Caribbean Community (CARICOM) began yesterday with a meeting of heads of government. Christie is expected to meet with CAPRI heads to discuss the implementation of SDGs for The Bahamas. CAPRI representatives told Guardian Business they met with Bahamas Ambassador at Large and Head of the Legal Division of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs Stan Smith yesterday and suggested that those discussions will lead to prolonged discussions with the prime minister.

According to a CAPRI press release, the SDG program is officially known as “Transforming our World: The 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development”, and is a set of seventeen aspirational "Global Goals" with 169 targets between them, spearheaded by the United Nations.

“In 2015, the Caribbean Policy Research Institute published a brief defining an SDG agenda for the Caribbean, focusing primarily on issues of climate change and marine resources,” the release said.

“Following this initial research, in partnership with the Caribbean Sustainable Development Institute, CAPRI now seeks to add The Bahamas, St. Lucia, Antigua & Barbuda and Barbados to the Sustainable Development Goals Dashboard.”

CAPRI, which is based in Kingston, Jamaica is a think tank that is seeking commitments from leaders of The Bahamas, St Lucia, Antigua & Barbuda and Barbados to ensure all of their agencies comply with the requirements for proper monitoring of the SDGs that were discussed yesterday.

CAPRI is hoping to glean research data from all the countries that formulate and agree to the SDGs.

“This meeting is therefore the first step in an exercise through which the Caribbean Policy Research Institute will be collecting data from government agencies within the countries targeted, in order to ensure accountability in the progress towards achieving targets set for the Caribbean in relation to these global goals,” the CAPRI release said.

“Progress made over the next couple of months will be shared at the occasion of the official United Nations Development Programme’s (UNDP) Caribbean Sustainable Development Goals Conference to be held in June in Jamaica, in the presence of economist and director of the Sustainable Development Solutions Network, Prof. Jeffrey Sachs of Columbia University.

“This meeting will serve to further inform the Caribbean SDG agenda, as well as highlight the importance of the Sustainable Development Goals to Small Island Developing States.”

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