UN Resident Coordinator in Tanzania and UNDP Resident Representative, Mr. Alvaro Rodriguez.
Today marks the 50th Anniversary of the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP). Founded in 1966, UNDP now works in some 170 countries and territories to help eradicate poverty and reduce inequalities and exclusion.
In Tanzania, UNDP support began in May 1978. Since then, UNDP has continued to serve as a critical member of the UN team in the country, which has collectively supported the government in achieving its development agenda through aligning its support specifically to the national development priorities. In addition, UNDP has helped strengthen the government’s capacity to manage and coordinate international development assistance through the development of strategies, action plans and an improved aid management system to facilitate national leadership.
UNDP in particular has supported the development of a national framework for reducing emissions from deforestation and forest degradation, as well as of local capacity to manage forest carbon projects. In addition, UNDP continues to support the government to integrate environment and energy issues into national policy, as well as build local and regional capacity. Through a UNDP and Global Environment Facility (GEF) initiative some 8,400 households in the northern region of Mwanza were given solar energy systems. Following this success, the Government now requires all local authorities in Tanzania to include solar planning in their budgets, and has removed all taxes and duties on solar energy appliances.
In terms of democratic governance, capacity development has been provided to the National Assembly of the United Republic of Tanzania and to the Zanzibar House of Representatives, thereby ensuring that MPs can better exercise their interrelated functions of law making, oversight and representation of citizens.
UNDP has over the last two decades strengthened the institutional capacity of the Tanzania Commission for AIDS (TACAIDS) and the Zanzibar AIDS Commission (ZAC) to respond to HIV/AIDS and its impact as well as social-economic factors that lead to the epidemic.
Allow me, in this context, to thank our Development Partners and to acknowledge the spirit of active engagement and collaboration which has characterized the process through which our support to Tanzania has progressed. Indeed, I would like to take this opportunity and to renew our readiness to strengthen further the cooperation with all our partners.
Last year, the world seized a unique opportunity to set a transformational global agenda for sustainable development, by reaching global agreements on financing for development, the post-2015 development agenda, and climate change. These 17 new Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) will continue the journey towards progress for everyone that aims at going even farther to focus the world on ending poverty, hunger and major health problems, among others. I believe we will achieve substantial results by taking on the many interconnected challenges we face together.
UNDP’s new strategy in Tanzania to 2021 builds on an established and strong relationship with the Government of Tanzania over the past three decades. The Country Programme Document (CPD) followed the imperative of national ownership, with our actions firmly determined by country needs and will be delivering on three major pillars: inclusive economic growth, environmental sustainability and inclusive democratic governance. Reaching out to women and youth of this country remains a top priority for UNDP and shall guide our focus and energy.
Going forward, partnerships and co-ordination will be critical, especially through increased engagement with South-South and triangular co-operation; deeper co-operation with emerging partners on shared development priorities; and partnerships with other stakeholders, including regional bodies, civil society organizations, and private sector entities. In doing this we will also seek to support the data revolution necessary to inform policy making, monitor progress, and enhance accountability.
To celebrate these achievements, on 29 February 2016, we will organize a Youth Symposium, aimed at discussing how to mainstream youth perspectives and youth-related issues in development planning processes. These youth will be the biggest beneficiaries when the SDGs are accomplished. We invite you to reflect on our shared history, and take part in the great work ahead—crafting strategic interventions where development assistance can be most effective.