COVID-19 Pandemic is a challenge that has long-term implications beyond the public health sector with impacts on the global economy and overall attainment of the 2030 agenda for sustainable development. The enormous health, economic, and social crises resulting from the Pandemic is also an opportunity to utilize the funds for smart recovery by undertaking wider-reaching and fundamental restructuring of critical sectors and activities. It makes economic sense to plan the recovery packages to be 'green' and the transition to low-emission climate-resilient and resource-efficient economies in socially inclusive ways. This green recovery pathway, by definition, means steering away from perverse economic incentives such as fossil fuel subsidies and investing in economically competitive renewable energy options. This pathway enables the creation of green jobs while ensuring adequate social safety nets for the most vulnerable people.

The ambitious and timely moves by the Republic of Korea, Rwanda, and the European Union towards a green recovery highlight the need for planetary level cooperation. The countries and entities that have already become ‘front-runners’ in taking the agenda of the Green New Deal and green recovery forward have useful experiences to share.

On 10th December 2020, UNDP Seoul Policy Centre and the Korea Ministry of Foreign Affairs co-organized a second event on the Green New Deal as part of the “Build Back Better” webinar series. The discussion focused on the challenges and opportunities and political-economy issues that are the most important in the current context and possible lessons for other countries. Panelists included senior policymakers and experts from South Korea, Rwanda, and the European Union and UNDP.  

Mr. Ban Ki Moon, the former Secretary-General of United Nations, delivered the opening remarks, followed by Dr. Stephan Klingebiel, Director of USPC, and Ambassador of Climate Change Mr. Yoo Yeonchul.

During his remarks, Mr. Ban Ki Moon stressed that “Today’s meeting is meaningful as it will not only provide important lessons but also enhance solidarity in the green transition.”

View the webinar recording here


Opening Session

·       Mr. Ban Ki Moon, former UN Secretary General (video message)

·       Dr. Stephan Klingebiel, Director, UNDP Seoul Policy Centre

·       Ambassador Yeonchul Yoo, Korea Ministry of Foreign Affairs

Panel discussion

Moderator Dr. Sarwat Chowdhury, Policy Specialist, UNDP Seoul Policy Centre

·       Ms. Adriana Dinu, Deputy Assistant Administrator and Deputy Director Bureau for Policy and Programme Support, UNDP, NY

·       Hon Minister Jeanne d'Arc Mujawamariya, Ministry of Environment, Govt of Rwanda

·       Mr. Maxwell Gomera, Resident Representative, UNDP Rwanda

·       Ms. Sandrine Dixson-Declève, Co-President, the Club of Rome

·       Dr. Tae Yong Jung, Professor of Sustainable Development at Yonsei University (presentation slides)

The webinar included 107 registrants and 63 attendees from 38 different countries (Angola, Argentina, Austria, Azerbaijan, Bangladesh, Belgium, Botswana, Canada, China, Congo, Denmark, Eritrea, Ethiopia, Georgia, Germany, India, Indonesia, Jordan, Kenya, South Korea, Lebanon, Malaysia, Myanmar, Nepal, Papua New Guinea, Philippines, Russian Federation, Rwanda, South Africa, Spain. Sweden, Switzerland, Trinidad and Tobago, Turkey, Uganda, United Kingdom, United States of America, Zimbabwe) across five continents.

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