India steps towards a Green and Inclusive Economy

New Delhi, India, 30 November 2018 – Partnership for Action on Green Economy (PAGE) held a two-day Inception Workshop in the national capital with multiple stakeholders from UN agencies, Government and other organizations. India, recently welcomed onto the PAGE programme in May this year, is fast becoming one of the largest economies in Asia. With an economic growth averaging 7.4% annually, India faces significant challenges including exploitation of natural resources, rapid industrialization, poverty and unemployment.

The purpose of this workshop was to engage stakeholders such as Government of India, funding partners and UN agencies regarding priority policymaking and capacity building activities that, with the support of PAGE, can make substantial contributions to India’s national targets regarding Inclusive Green Economy, Nationally Determined Contributions to the Paris Agreement, Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) initiatives. The workshop also provided an opportunity to identify sectors under resource efficiency where work on green economy could be mainstreamed. It also helped further refine the terms of reference for foundational work that would set baselines and help shape the scope of PAGE’s work in India.

Delivering the keynote address, CK Mishra, Secretary, Ministry of Environment, Forest and Climate Change said “Green Economy is a part of the Indian mindset. India is working towards equity and responsible growth and climate justice is at the heart of it. India’s PAGE operational strategy should take into consideration key sectors for intervention in India and the understanding of current sectoral policy regime to bring in visible changes.”

Along with the five UN agencies that form PAGE (UN Environment, UNIDO, UNITAR, the ILO and UNDP), Ministry of Environment, Forest and Climate Change is the coordinating Ministry on PAGE. Joint Secretary Nikunja K Sundaray, PAGE focal point, spoke about India’s approach and Additional Secretary Anil Jain spoke about the way forward. Senior representatives from European Union – one of PAGE’s seven funding partners, Ministry of Finance and TERI as well as members of other organizations actively participated in sessions focussing on resource efficiency such as sustainable public procurement, end of life management in emergent sectors, fiscal policies, skill and capacity building for a green economy transition, to name a few.

"I would like to congratulate India on being successful in obtaining PAGE approval. The government is committed and in the process of formulating a resource efficiency roadmap. The PAGE inception workshop is a stepping-stone to identifying green economy initiatives and processes as well as resource efficiency sectors in India which could potentially be a game changer,” said Yuri Afanasiev, UN Resident Coordinator, India.

 The workshop concluded with a robust discussion on green and circular economy with some concrete outcomes:

  • PAGE India would bring in transformational shift through global green economy learning forum where in UN Agencies and other international organizations form a conglomerate and offer advice on emerging policy issues
  • Through the forum a series of interactive and programmatic high-level regional consultations will be organised that will help finalise PAGE workplan in India, primarily identifying sectors for intervention.

“This is an exciting time to join the Government of India in its search for new pathways to greener and more circular economies.   The focus on sustainable consumption and production builds on a strong tradition of resource efficiency and circularity in India, and the PAGE team is grateful to be a part of this effort,” said Steven Stone, Chief, Resources and Markets Branch, Economy Division, UN Environment.

The Partnership for Action on Green Economy (PAGE) was launched in 2013 as a response to the call at Rio+20 to support those countries wishing to embark on greener and more inclusive growth trajectories.

PAGE seeks to put sustainability at the heart of economic policies and practices to advance the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development and supports nations and regions in reframing economic policies and practices around sustainability to foster economic growth, create income and jobs, reduce poverty and inequality, and strengthen the ecological foundations of their economies. 

NOTES TO EDITORS

About UN Environment

UN Environment is the leading global voice on the environment. It provides leadership and encourages partnership in caring for the environment by inspiring, informing, and enabling nations and peoples to improve their quality of life without compromising that of future generations. UN Environment works with governments, the private sector, civil society and with other UN entities and international organizations across the world.

About PAGE

Since 2013, The Partnership for Action on Green Economy (PAGE) has grown into an increasingly prominent alliance of UN Agencies, international partner organizations and governments. The partnership is recognized as an innovative and efficient model of excellence for delivering on the 2030 Agenda. Drawing on the expertise of five UN Agencies – UN Environment, the International Labour Organization, the UN Development Programme, the UN Industrial Development Organization, and the UN Institute for Training and Research – PAGE challenges business-as-usual growth and business models, and places sustainability at the heart of economic systems. At the global level, PAGE partners with the donor community, the wider UN system, governments, civil society and the private sector to amplify and accelerate transitions to greener, more inclusive development, and to support future generations and sustainable development pathways.

For more information, please contact:

Jasleen Dhanota Kanwal, UN Environment, Country Office India, jasleen.dhanota@un.org