The Office of the Auditor-General has published its report on The Government’s preparedness to implement the sustainable development goals.
In 2015, all members of the United Nations adopted The 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development and its 17 sustainable development goals.
The goals encompassed social, environmental, and economic sustainable development to improve life for current and future generations.
“We carried out a review of how the Government is demonstrating its commitment to the 2030 Agenda,” Auditor-General, John Ryan said in an executive summary of the report.
“We looked at what arrangements are in place and how the Government is encouraging stakeholders and the public to engage with efforts to achieve the goals by 2030.”
In 2019, the Government reported on New Zealand’s progress towards the goals.
“That report highlights a range of policies and activities that contribute to the goals. The Government’s well-being focus and the Living Standards Framework also have some alignment with the goals,” Mr Ryan said.
“However, we found that the Government needs to clarify its commitment and what it plans to achieve by 2030.
“This includes whether it will set targets for each of the goals New Zealand will work towards; what specific actions it will take; and how it will measure progress. The roles, responsibilities, and expectations of government agencies also need to be more clearly defined.”
The Auditor-General said the Government needed to consider how it will engage with stakeholders to increase awareness of New Zealand’s commitment to the goals and work with Māori to ensure that plans to achieve the goals uphold and reflect te Tiriti o Waitangi.
“The Government has improved the data that is available about well-being. Two monitoring frameworks that assess well-being outcomes have been developed, and these have several indicators that align with the goals.
“However, improvements are needed if these frameworks are to adequately monitor progress,” he said.
The OAG report contains recommendations for the Government to progress the planning, implementation, and monitoring needed to achieve the goals by 2030.