Billions of lives depend on "social compact": Ban

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A mother and her child attend a free clinic in Haiti. UN Photo/Logan Abassi.

Billions of lives depend on the "social compact" enshrined in a 15-year action plan to finance global development, and the world must follow through on it, the UN Secretary-General has urged.

The plan named after the Ethiopian capital of Addis Ababa, was adopted last July during a UN conference on Financing for Development in the African country.

The social compact aims at getting countries to commit to providing basic social services such as free healthcare, education and income.

Jocelyne Sambira has the story.

The Addis Action Agenda not only commits to "delivering social protection and essential public services for all", but also vows to end poverty in all its forms everywhere by adopting the social compact.

If implemented, the UN says, this could lead to a historic step forward by putting people not governments at the centre of international development efforts.

However, the document does not give specifics on financing strategies.

Speaking at a high-level meeting on financing for the UN's new global development goals, Ban Ki-moon urged delegates to make smart investments "in people and the planet".

"More than 2.4 billion people still lack clean water and sanitation; 57 million of the world's children are not enrolled in school; and more than half the world's population lacks any social security coverage. We must follow through on the new 'social compact' enshrined in the Addis Agenda to provide social protection and essential public services for all. Billions of lives depend on it." 

The Addis Agenda together with the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development and the Paris Agreement on climate change are triumphs of "multilateralism" and are historic agreements to eradicate poverty, said Ban. 

Jocelyne Sambira, United Nations.

Duration: 1’22″

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