Closing Remarks: Meeting of Chairs and Co-Chairs of Sector Working Groups, Sub-Working Groups and other Related Stakeholders

Closing Remarks, UN Resident Coordinator

Monday 28th September (8:30-12:00)
International Cooperation and Training Centre

WRAP-UP (5 Mins)

Your Excellency,

Esteemed Government partners,

Distinguished Ambassadors,

Colleagues, Ladies & Gentlemen,

 

  • Firstly, let me thank you all again for their participation in today’s meeting.
  • We have discussed many of the challenges that lay ahead in developing and delivering the 9th NSEDP given the consequences of COVID-19 that continue to reverberate here and around the world.
  • As has been made clear, finding ways to mobilize sufficient resources to support the plan and development progress will be critical over the coming years, and this task has been made that much harder by the impact of COVID-19.
  • I have maintained to the Vice-Minister the commitment on behalf of the UN to support the Government of Lao PDR in this crucial task.
  • Looking ahead, there are 3 key principles that I would emphasize as critical factors for the months ahead through to the Round Table Meeting.
  • Firstly, having reached, through an inclusive process, a solid, credible plan is the foundation for development, and also for succeeding in raising support, allocating against priorities and attracting additional resources, both in the form of international support, and private investment.
  • This is why the effort that we now put in into the development of the 9th NSEDP is so important. This includes all of the points emphasized by Vice Minister Kikeo this morning:
    • to consider the changed circumstances as a result of COVID-19, and what this means for the targets and core assumptions behind the plan;
    • to prioritize amongst the priorities, and make the smart investments; and
    • to think carefully about the appropriate sequencing of investments and priorities over the short, medium, and longer term.
  • Secondly, the plan needs to be backed by a robust implementation structure, so that it guides and motivates decisions and policies along the way.
  • That is why having a well-designed, and well-populated monitoring and evaluation framework is critical, and one of the Ministry and Planning and Investment’s highest priorities over the coming months.
  • This also requires having an appropriate institutional architecture in place to ensure appropriate oversight throughout the life of the plan. A key recurring message from all of the taskforce discussions was the value of strategic inter-sectoral coordination structures that could support an efficient flow of information across sectors, building on the important work within the Sector Working Groups.
  • And thirdly, the plan needs to be costed, linked to the national budgeting process and a sound strategic financing strategy. This will enable a holistic approach to all the potential sources of finance that can be mobilized in support of the 9th NSEDP.
  • The reality is that we will face an increasingly resource-constrained environment over the coming years.
  • There are opportunities if we can take the right steps now and seize them. And it is all the more important that we efficiently channel the resources that we do have to the right priorities.
  • So, in short, there is still work ahead. But I would also stress that what we need to achieve is clear, and with the right approach also fully achievable.
  • With this, I would like to hand the final word over to my co-Chair, Excellency Vice Minister Kikeo.
  • Thank you very much.
Speech by
Author
Ms. Sara Sekkenes
Resident Coordinator
RCO
Ms. Sara Sekkenes_Photo
UN entities involved in this initiative
UN
United Nations