Spotlight on Sustainable Development 2021: Demanding Justice Beyond Rhetoric

Policy responses to the COVID-19 pandemic and resulting economic crisis have exacerbated rather than reduced global inequalities. The most visible example of this is the global disparity in the distribution of vaccines. So far more than 60 percent of people in high-income countries have received at least one dose of COVID-19 vaccine, but less than 2 percent have done so in low-income countries. In view of this dramatic disparity, the “leave no one behind” mantra of the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development remains hollow. In fact, the vested interests of economic elites continue to dominate political decision-making. Given the urgency of the COVID-19 crisis and the other unresolved global problems, most notably the climate emergency, it is high time for transformative policies, strategies and structural changes.

This year’s Spotlight on Sustainable Development Report describes the highly uneven socio-economic impact of the COVID-19 crisis and analyses the policy responses to it. It explores beyond the rhetoric, highlighting deepening inequalities, self-serving and hypocritical policies and governance failures at national and international level. Addressing the imbalance in global vaccine production and distribution, the report also examines a few key areas where political and structural changes are necessary to correct the limited and asymmetric recovery. With this virtual launching event, we will present key findings of the report.

Brief snapshots by:

  • K.M. Gopakumar, Third World Network
  • Vanita Mukherjee, Development Alternatives with Women for a New Era (DAWN)
  • Roberto Bissio, Social Watch

Policy conclusions by:

  • Kate Donald, Center for Economic and Social Right
  • Daria Cibrario, Public Services International (PSI)
  • Isabel Ortiz,Global Social Justice


  • Bodo Ellmers, Global Policy Forum
  • María Graciela Cuervo, Development Alternatives with Women for a New Era (DAWN)

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Participants will receive the login details one day before the event. Further information on the Spotlight Report 2021 will be available shortly at


CoNGO Notes: For more information on the NGO Committee on Sustainable Development-NY, please visit For more information on the NGO Committee on Sustainable Development-Vienna, please visit For more information on the NGO Committee on Financing for Development, please visit

Alternatives to Debt and Austerity in Latin America

Alternativas frente a la Deuda y Austeridad en América Latina | Alternatives to Debt & Austerity in Latin America


  • Oscar Ugarteche, Coordinator of the Economic Observatory of Latin America (OBELA) from the Economic Research Institute (UNAM).
  • Isabel Ortiz, Director of Global Social Justice


  • How do austerity policies affect workers? Jocelio Drummond, Regional Secretary of the Public Services International (PSI) for the Americas
  • How do austerity policies affect women’s rights? Verónica Serafini, Latindadd
  • How was the IMF´s return to Latin America? Mario Valencia, Latindadd

Moderator: Patricia Miranda, Latindadd

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Latin America is going through one of the worst social and economic crises, which drags structural failures of the economic model deepened during the pandemic.

In the face of confinement decisions, developed countries have responded with fiscal stimuli and monetary emissions, and some poor countries have managed to access temporary debt service suspensions. However, middle-income countries -that is to say, almost all countries in Latin America- face difficulties in accessing the neccesary financing to address health and economic emergencies.

Concerns in the region grow around the need to alleviate the situation of millions of people living below the poverty line, closing the deepening gender gaps, applying urgent measures in the face of job losses, preventing lack of education from becoming a structurally lagging factor and also, preventing countries from continuing to depend on the extractive economy as the only form of economic growth, among others.

The financing needs to face the crisis have led countries to borrow, increasing their external and internal debt in the midst of a critical fiscal situation, as well as to implement austerity measures. The IMF has returned to the region and there are no signs of a sustainable recovery in this new lost decade for Latin America. In this seminar we seek to address responses and solutions to the situation in Latin America, in the midst of a multiple crisis. Additionally, we seek to address alternatives leading to the recovery of the region.


CoNGO Notes: For more information on the NGO Committee on Financing for Development, please visit For more information on the NGO Committee on Social Development, please visit For more information on the NGO Committee on Human Rights, please email the co-chairs at or