On 29 January 2024, the co-facilitators of the preparatory process for the Summit of the Future – Germany and Namibia – published the first proposal (zero draft) for the Pact for the Future. This Pact will be adopted by the UN General Assembly as the outcome of the Summit of the Future (September 2024), which should constitute a moment to reinforce the connection between global governance and the people of the world.
Following consultations with all relevant stakeholders, the draft of the Pact for the Future elaborates on five key pillars:
- Sustainable development and financing for development
- International peace and security
- Science, technology and innovation and digital cooperation
- Youth and future generations
- Transforming global governance
The Global Cities Hub (GCH) submitted earlier inputs to the fifth key pillar “Transforming global governance” to enable sustainable engagement of local and regional governments (LRGs) and therefore achieving effective and inclusive multilateralism. We are glad to see the commitment to a vision of a multilateral system that is not limited to States only and seeks to be more effective, just, representative and inclusive.
The draft of the Pact for the Future talks about a more structured and inclusive engagement with local governments – among other stakeholders. We consider it as an important step in the right direction but call upon all negotiating parties to further strengthen this notion by establishing a specific UN status for LRGs, as suggested by GCH in its input.
The GCH also proposes to elevate the Forum of Mayors in the UN hierarchy and develop this Forum as the main entry point for mayors worldwide in the UN system. This year, the Forum (30 sep-1 Oct 2024) will explore how mayors can contribute to the Pact for the Future and its implementation, in shaping the future we want and becoming part of the solution to the many challenges we face. We therefore hope that the Forum of Mayors will be included in future iterations of the drafting process, because it constitutes a ground-breaking initiative allowing mayors to discuss, in a formal UN body, global challenges that affect them.
The GCH is glad to see elements of its suggestions being included in the zero draft of the Pact for the Future and will continue to call upon States to take into consideration the role of local and regional governments in the next drafts.
Photo: ©UN Photo/Rick Bajornas