National reports

This text is based on the executive summary of a larger report titled “Großbaustelle Nachhaltigkeit – Deutschland und die globale Nachhaltigkeitsagenda”, which will be released 5 September 2017 by CorA – Netzwerk für Unternehmensverantwortung, Deutscher Bundesjugendring, Deutscher Gewerkschaftsbund, Deutscher Naturschutzring, Diakonie Deutschland, Forum Menschenrechte, Forum Umwelt und Entwicklung, Forum Ziviler Friedensdienst, Global Policy Forum, Netzwerk Steuergerechtigkeit, Plattform Zivile Konfliktbearbeitung and VENRO – Verband Entwicklungspolitik und Humanitäre Hilfe deutscher Nichtregierungsorganisationen with financial support from Engagement Global on behalf of the German Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development, as well as the Federal Ministry for the Environment, Nature Conservation, Building and Nuclear Safety and the Umweltbundesamt (Federal Environment Agency).
One of the important issues in the transition of Eastern European countries from central planning to market economies was the lag behind the then so-called First World, especially behind the states of Western Europe. Unfortunately, even after 26 years, this lag persists. Attempts to develop civic structures and to integrate them into international networks have largely failed, though in this respect the Czech Republic has advanced further than most of the former Eastern Bloc. A sustainable development agenda might help to change the situation, if it were treated seriously by all participants. As for now, however, it remains unclear whether the interests of a decent standard of living and environmental protection will prevail over the interests of selfish profit.
The Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) are not a matter of developing countries that would only concern France in its external relations. They also impact French domestic policies. The targets that risk not being met reflect the fact that they are not first and foremost issues related to environmental protection in the French context; instead, half of the targets that will be difficult to reach concerns economic and social issues such as employment, poverty, educational inequalities, gender equality and official development assistance (ODA). The fight against extreme poverty and exclusion is one of the major challenges in France today. The country will not be able to reverse the trend without significant mobilization and quantified targets, which are unfortunately not foreseen at present. And yet, ensuring the participation of people experiencing poverty in policies affecting them, mainstreaming of poverty eradication and sustainable development, and setting human rights standards based on the guidelines on extreme poverty are measures that are all possible to implement.
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