The world must develop a strategy articulating targets to combat COVID-19 based on the principles of monitoring and oversight, coordination efforts at constituency level, advocacy & awareness and inclusivity of all. It is essential to realize that we as parliamentarians must catalyze our efforts to combat pandemic through effective utilization of existing resources and strengthening partnerships.
These views were expressed by Former Chairman Senate and member of the Inter-Parliamentary Union (IPU) Committee on United Nations Affairs, Senator Farooq H. Naek while addressing Virtual Meeting of the Parliamentary Forum of the UN high-level Political Forum on Sustainable Development on Wednesday.
Addressing the parliamentarians from across the globe he said that a nation can only prosper when its people have a suitable standard of living and opportunities to become a positive contributor to the economy. Aiming to achieve this, he said, Pakistan adopted Sustainable Development Goals (SDGS) as Pakistan’s Development Goals. He said that we are using these goals as a roadmap to ensure a better life for all through solving problems relating to healthcare, nutrition, education, poverty, gender inequality, climate change and more.
He said that the unprecedented crisis of COVID-19 has reshaped the lives of everyone around the world. It is a health issue but it has shut down the global economy. He said that social vulnerabilities are increasing due to pandemic especially in developing countries that are not digitally advanced. Every county who is struggling to achieve SDGs prior to COVID-19 is known to be facing more problems after the pandemic. In Pakistan $2 billion was out lowed in March 2020 when the pandemic hit the country. Pakistan’s growth rate is projected to be 0.4 per cent in 2019-2020 and for next year it is expected to be around 2.3 per cent. Exports were shrunk in April and May 2020. In Pakistan, there are almost 250,000 infected cases with 5197 death and fatality rate is 2.1 per cent which is lower than the global rate. It has exposed the weakness of health systems, lack of education and lack of global cooperation has aggravated the crisis.
He said that it is a high time to rethink strategies with a collective approach and global cooperation. Leaders around the world presented their views during the forum.