Minister Gould to lead Canadian delegation at the United Nations High-Level Political Forum to present Canada’s progress in achieving the Sustainable Development Goals

News release

July 17, 2023              New York City, New York              Employment and Social Development Canada

Combatting inequalities, protecting the planet, and providing every person with the opportunities they need to prosper are fundamental principles of sustainable development. These principles are at the heart of the 2030 Agenda and 17 Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). This 15-year action plan, adopted by all United Nations (UN) Members States, provides us with a vibrant and hopeful roadmap to build a better world together. Canada strongly supports the UN 2030 Agenda and is working together with national and international partners to enable and accelerate progress on the SDGs.

Minister of Families, Children and Social Development, Karina Gould, will attend the UN High-Level Political Forum in New York City from July 17 to19 as head of the Canadian delegation, and will be joined by the Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of International Development, Anita Vandenbeld.

On July 17, Minister Gould will deliver Canada’s National Statement, reinforcing leadership on the 2030 Agenda and underlining the significance of gender equality and human rights. On July 18, the Minister will host Canada’s official side-event on leveraging social innovation to advance the SDGs with UN counterparts, intergovernmental organizations, civil society and youth stakeholders and experts.

On July 19, Minister Gould will present Canada’s Voluntary National Review (VNR), highlighting Canada’s progress towards achieving the 17 SDGs, lessons learned, and the challenges and opportunities in implementing the 2030 Agenda at home and abroad. In our efforts to achieve the 17 SDGs, Canada has focused on advancing five priorities: No Poverty (SDG 1), Quality Education (SDG 4), Gender Equality (SDG 5), Climate Action (SDG 13) and Partnerships for the Goals (SDG 17). Minister Gould will highlight that Canada has surpassed its interim poverty reduction target and emphasize Canada’s support for women, girls and gender diverse people, including through international assistance.

The Government of Canada has an ambitious agenda on sustainability; socially, economically, and environmentally. Canadians are working hard to be change-makers in their own communities, across the country, and around the world. This includes the SDG Funding Program recipients who are helping to create community resources to enhance and share local-level knowledge on the SDGs. Internationally, the Prime Minister of Canada, Justin Trudeau and the Prime Minister of Barbados, Mia Mottley, are co-chairing the Sustainable Development Goals Advocates Group. Together, they advocate for the important global issues including fighting climate change, protecting nature, and empowering women and girls all over the world.


“Canada’s second Voluntary National Review recognizes the exceptional work happening in Canada and around the world to advance the Sustainable Development Goals. Notably, Canada has exceeded its interim target of a 20% reduction in poverty. As we cross the halfway mark of the 2030 Agenda, reporting and collaborating on our progress is more important than ever. The Government of Canada will continue to work to advance the Sustainable Development Goals by working with partners at home and abroad to build a sustainable future where no one is left behind.”

-   Minister of Families, Children and Social Development, Karina Gould

“Overlapping global crises - conflict, climate change, food insecurity, rising debt levels - are undermining progress on the Sustainable Development Goals and limiting developing country capacity to invest in development priorities. Canada stands with developing countries in the face of these challenges and will ensure our Feminist International Assistance Policy is guiding our continued support. By taking a feminist approach, we are working to accelerate progress across the Goals in the most inclusive, effective and impactful manner.”

-  Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of International Development, Anita Vandenbeld

Quick facts

  • The 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development is a 15-year global framework adopted by Canada and all other 192 United Nations (UN) Member States in 2015. 

  • Canada is among 39 countries that will be presenting a Voluntary National Review (VNR) at the 2023 High-Level Political Forum (HLPF). 

  • The HLPF is the main UN platform on Sustainable Development and plays a central role in the follow-up and review of the 2030 Agenda at the global level. 

  • A VNR is a report that a country submits to the UN to facilitate knowledge sharing, and identify progress and challenges, in order to accelerate its achievement of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs)

  • Canada’s VNR demonstrates progress made towards achieving the 17 SDGs since the first VNR presentation in 2018.

  • The SDG Funding Program is in place to advance progress on the 2030 Agenda. Through this program, Canada is investing up to $59.8 million over 13 years. To date, Canada's SDG Funding Program has supported over 130 projects funded for approximately $22 million.

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For media enquiries, please contact:

Philippe-Alexandre Langlois
Press Secretary
Office of the Minister of Families, Children and Social Development, Karina Gould

Media Relations Office
Employment and Social Development Canada
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