Hefty price tag for UN plan to fight poverty

UNITED NATIONS • The price tag for a bold new global anti-poverty agenda comes to between US$3.5 trillion (S$4.8 trillion) and US$5 trillion annually over the next 15 years.

The UN's 193 member states agreed on a draft plan for the sustainable development goals last weekend and world leaders are set to endorse them at a summit in New York next month.

The 17 goals and 169 targets to end poverty, ensure healthy lives, promote education and combat climate change are even more sweeping than the UN's Millennium Development Goals that expire at the end of this year. UN Secretary-General Ban Ki Moon warned that implementing it would be a challenge. "We are resolved to free the human race within this generation from the tyranny of poverty," he said .

Kenyan Ambassador Macharia Kamau, who led negotiations along with Irish Ambassador David Donoghue, acknowledged that the funding required to achieve the goals was "astronomical". Microsoft's Bill and Melinda Gates, who head a foundation, have said the new goals stray too far away from the previous focus on health and education.


A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on August 05, 2015, with the headline 'Hefty price tag for UN plan to fight poverty'. Print Edition | Subscribe