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Basque Country leads way in implementing global development goals


While the sustainable development agenda took a back seat during the pandemic, one region in Spain pressed ahead with creating an ‘ecosystem’ for reaching global goals locally. To take a closer look, EURACTIV spoke with Marta Marín, delegate of the Basque Country’s mission to the EU.

With less than a decade to achieve the UN Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) by 2030, studies show that local and regional authorities are still often sidelined in the monitoring and national coordination of implementing the global benchmarks.

One of the places, however, that seems to have found a way to successfully make the global agenda their own is Spain’s Basque country, a densely populated, heavily industrialised territory, with €36,300 annual GDP per capita exceeding the EU average of €31,000.

After setting the political goal to localise the SDGs in 2016, the local government first looked inward and implemented workshops to familiarise civil servants at municipal, provincial and regional levels with the global framework and benchmarks.

However, the road was full of trials and errors...

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