At the end of November 2016, Turkmenistan will bring together senior representatives from various countries and representatives of international organizations to discuss issues of further development of the transport system and its role in achieving sustainable development goals.
Secretary-General Ban Ki-Moon will convene the first ever global conference on sustainable transport, on 26 and 27 November 2016 in Ashgabat, Turkmenistan. In resolution 70/197 titled “Towards comprehensive cooperation among all modes of transport for promoting sustainable multimodal transit corridors”, the General Assembly welcomed the initiative of the Secretary-General to convene the Conference.
The Global Forum will build on the intergovernmental discussions on sustainable transport. The program of the forum, in addition to the plenary sessions and specialized sessions, provides a number of other activities, including thematic presentation, the ceremony of signing of international instruments, bilateral and multilateral meetings and negotiations, etc.
The 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development, adopted in 2015, also recognizes the global need to adopt policies which enhance sustainable transport systems. It is clear that advances in sustainable transport will contribute to the attainment of several, if not all, of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), outlined in the 2030 Agenda. Some SDGs are directly connected to sustainable transport through targets and indicators.
In this spirit, the Global Sustainable Transport Conference will bring together key stakeholders from Governments, UN system and other international organizations, the private sector, and civil society to engage in a dialogue that emphasizes the integrated and cross-cutting nature of sustainable transport and its multiple roles in supporting the achievement of the SDGs. All modes of transport—road, rail, aviation, ferry and maritime—will be addressed. The concerns of developing countries, including least developed countries, landlocked developing countries and small island developing States, will receive particular focus. Developing countries and their expanding cities face urgent challenges, but they also have opportunities to bypass unsustainable transport practices and find fast tracks to a new paradigm of sustainability. The Conference will shine a spotlight on these opportunities.