10 March 2010

High-level Plenary Meeting of the General Assembly (’MDG Summit’)

What has become known as the ‘MDG summit’ - referred to in official circles as the ‘High-level Plenary Meeting of the General Assembly’, or HLPM – will take place from 20-22 September 2010 at UN Headquarters in New York.

The summit is conceived by UN Member States as a significant opportunity to galvanize commitment, rally support and spur collective action in order to reach the Millennium Development Goals by 2015. The summit will focus on accelerating progress towards the achievement of all the Millennium Development Goals by 2015, taking into account the progress made with regard to the internationally agreed development goals, through a comprehensive review. The meeting will result in the adoption of a concise and action-oriented outcome to be agreed by Member States. (For more on the background and purpose of the meeting, click here)

But what will the summit actually look like?

All of the arrangements have been precisely spelled out in the ‘modalities resolution’ adopted by Member States last December (A/64/L.36), but in short:

-  Member States are encouraged to be represented by their respective Heads of State or Government;
-  Will be comprised of 6 plenary meeting and six interactive roundtables over the course of the three days;
-  The six round-table sessions will have at least 50 seats each and will be co-chaired by two Heads of State or Government;
-  The six round-table meetings would have the overarching objective of “Making it happen by 2015”, and each one will focus on one theme, as follows:

o Round table 1 — Addressing the challenge of poverty, hunger and gender equality
o Round table 2 — Meeting the goals of health and education
o Round table 3 — Promoting sustainable development
o Round table 4 — Addressing emerging issues and evolving approaches
o Round table 5 — Addressing the special needs of the most vulnerable
o Round table 6 — Widening and strengthening partnerships

-  Civil society and private sector organizations will be entitled to 4 seats in each of the Roundtables. Who holds these seats will be determined by the President of the General Assembly, in consultation with civil society representatives themselves.
-  The round-table sessions will be closed to the media and the general public. Accredited delegates and observers will be able to follow the proceedings of the round-table sessions via a closed-circuit television in the overflow room.
-  Summaries of the deliberations of the six round-table sessions will be presented orally by the chairpersons of the round-table sessions or their representatives during the concluding plenary meeting of the High-level Plenary Meeting.
-  There will be a closing session of one hour on the final day.

Since the summit coincides with the General Debate of the 65th Session of the General Assembly and because of the presences of a large number of high-level officials, security will be very tight around the UN Headquarters complex and access will be very limited.

As more information becomes available regarding specific arrangements for the summit, it will be posted on this page.