particular emphasis on achieving sustainable development and is strongly committed to the implementation of
the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development and its 17 Sustainable Development
Goals (SDGs), as they provide an ambitious, visionary and transformative
framework for a new, equitable and sustainable development path. Ensuring that “no one is left behind”, including for Education, is a high political priority for Greece, as the
country is now exiting a period of prolonged economic crisis (https://sustainabledevelopment.un.org/memberstates/greece).
The National Growth Strategy of
Greece adopted in May 2018 (http://www.mindev.gov.gr/greece-a-growth-strategy-for-the-future/), is in line with the overall themes and provisions of
In July 2018, Greece
presented its first Voluntary National Review (VNR) at the 2018 UN High-Level
Political Forum on Sustainable development (HLPF). This VNR report covers all 17 SDGs (https://sustainabledevelopment.un.org/content/documents/19378Greece_VNR_Greece_2018_pdf_FINAL_140618.pdf) through eight
National Priorities for adapting the SDGs to national needs and circumstances,
also in line with the above mentioned National Growth Strategy. These eight overarching National
Priorities have been defined, through an open dialogue within all government
units and with a wide array of stakeholders, and by an in-depth mapping
exercise carried out in 2017.
Apart from the
full VNR report, additional information on the Greek presentation at the HLPF
are available on-line at https://sustainabledevelopment.un.org/content/documents/27607greece.pdf
Following the compilation of the VNR
comprehensive report, a process that will lead to the elaboration of a National
Implementation Plan for the SDGs, in 2019, is currently being launched. This National
Implementation Plan is expected to be aligned with the provisions of the National
Growth Strategy and will aim to promote cross-sectoral approaches and actions among line Ministries.
Moreover, in 2019, emphasis will also be given to
strengthening the involvement of the Hellenic Parliament in terms of follow up of the implementation of the SDGs
by providing reviews and political guidance with the overall aim to enhance policy coherence for sustainable development and integrate the SDGs
further in legislative work.
|Leading Ministry and
of Foreign Affairs
|Other ministries involved
All line / thematic Ministries of the government.
Special burden falls on the Ministry of Environment and Energy as is
thematically involved in the majority of SDGs (e.g. more than 7 out of the
overall 17 SDGs)
§ Regarding the governance scheme for
coordinating national efforts to implement the SDGs, since December 2016
following a decision by the Greek Prime Minister, the task has been allocated
by Law, adopted by the Hellenic Parliament, to the General Secretariat of the
Government (GSG), with emphasis on enhancing inter-ministerial coordination,
given the fact that the GSG is a permanent structure well positioned, standing
close to the political leadership of the country (inter alia Governmental
Council of Economic Policy, Governmental Council of Social Policy etc),
indicating commitment at the highest level, as well as close to the public
administration and all line Ministries for law making issues, ensuring the
continuity of efforts. Moreover, it works closely and on a daily basis with the
Hellenic Parliament on legislative and regulatory issues and coordinates the
legislative work of the whole government. Thus, the GSG is capable of ensuring a
whole-of-government approach, reducing silos across thematic policies from the
design to implementation, ensuring coherence and cooperating directly with all
governmental bodies and line Ministries.
§ In parallel, the Hellenic Ministry
of Foreign Affairs continues to be responsible for the external dimension of
our national efforts while the Hellenic Ministry of Environment and Energy is
“thematically/technically” responsible for the implementation of 7 out of the
overall 17 SDGs (i.e. 6, 7, 11, 12, 13, 14 partly and 15) with past experience
on the matter being the national Focal Point for the UNCSD for around 20 years
§ Under the coordination of the
General Secretariat of the Government (GSG), an “Inter-ministerial Coordination
Network for SDGs” with representatives from all line Ministries, was officially
re-established in December 20016 to oversee and steer national efforts for the
implementation of the SDGs at national level and in particular, as a first
urgent initial step, to undertake the completion of a mapping / gap analysis
exercise by all Ministries.
§ The above mentioned mapping exercise
has been completed by all Ministries in February 2017 in order to explore the existing and missing
policy instruments for SDGs implementation in Greece. The Ministries identified
which goals and targets they are covering and by which policies and measures.
The measures vary from national and EU legislation to sectoral or thematic
strategies and action plans, as well as implementation of the international
agreements and commitments. This exercise resulted in compiling all relevant
policies and measures that are still missing, indicating the state-of-play and
budgetary status, and analysing areas of insufficient action or potential for
cross-sectoral co-operation. Moreover, all Ministries had to rank and
prioritise all SDG targets under their competences according to their existing
priorities and on-going work, from 0 (little emphasis / priority) to 3 (high
priority target for Greece).
§ This overall analysis and mapping resulted in
defining 8 overarching National Priorities for Greece linked to the SDGs and in
line with the overall Government priorities that should be pursued through our
national efforts for adapting the SDGs to national circumstances. These are:
1. Promotion of a competitive, innovative and
sustainable economic growth (SDGs 8,9)
2. Promotion of full employment and decent work for
all (SDGs 8,4),
3. Addressing poverty and social exclusion and
promote universal access to quality health care services (SDGs 1, 2, 3, 8, 10),
4. Reduction of social and regional inequalities
and ensuring equal opportunities for all (SDGs 10, 5, 4, 8, 1, 3, 11, 16),
5. Promotion of a high quality and inclusive
education for all (SDG 4),
6. Strengthen the protection and sustainable
management of the natural capital as a base for social development/prosperity and transition to a low-carbon economy (SDGs 6, 7, 11, 12, 13, 14, 15),
7. Building of effective, accountable and
transparent institutions / institutional mechanisms (SDGs 16, 17),
8. Strengthen and promote open, participatory and
democratic processes (SDGs 16, 17).
§ The above-mentioned National Priorities along
with the mapping/gap analysis exercise regarding the SDGs are going to be
further discussed and reviewed by the Parliament in the context of the
elaboration and evaluation of the National Implementation Action Plan on SDGs scheduled for 2019.
|Main contact point for the
of Foreign Affairs
|Links to main websites/
documents on national
implementation of the
2030 Agenda and SDGs
§ In this abovementioned overall context, the
National Development Strategy of Greece which is currently going though the
final stages of elaboration, has been made “SDG aware” by including references
and operational linkages to the SDGs, and vice versa as the Strategy will serve
as the basis and strategic framework the implementation of the SDGs at national
§ Moreover, there is an effort and intention to
make all programmes and strategies “SDG aware” through the involvement of the GSG both in law-making,
generally in Greece,
and recently in the implementation of the SDGs. This involvement can ensure
greater coherence in legislation and addressing of trade-offs from the policy
design phase, right from the start, so that the legislation that is enacted /
institutionalised as well as the various national programmes and strategies
adopted, thereinafter, can be
complementary and aligned to the principles and objectives of Agenda 2030.
§ Greece will be going through the VNR process in New York during the
HLPF, next year, in July 2018. To this end, Greece, through the “Inter-ministerial Coordination
Committee” and under the leading of the General Secretariat of the
Government, national preparations for
the drafting of the National VNR Report have already started: the outline of
the Report has been agreed by all Ministries and now all Ministries are in the
process of providing their inputs to the actual elaboration of the Report.
§ The plan is to submit a draft of the VNR Report to
the Parliament, for its guidance and comments in order to finalise it.
Therefore, the Parliament’s involvement will clearly be an important one in
§ Since the 5 SDGs selected for the in-depth
thematic review during the 2018 HLPF are of an “environmental nature” (i.e.
SDGs 6, 7, 11, 12, 15), an important part of the work to be done regarding the
thematic analysis falls under the responsibilities of the Hellenic Ministry of
Environment and Energy.
§ Greece plans to elaborate a National
Implementation Action Plan after the VNR process is completed, which is due to
be finalised in 2019, also with the involvement of the Parliament (see also
answers provided for question no 4 below).
Greece conducted its VNR in July 2018 at the HLPF. https://sustainabledevelopment.un.org/content/documents/19378Greece_VNR_Greece_2018_pdf_FINAL_140618.pdf
This Country Profile has been last updated on: Thursday, 31 January 2019
For the sources used in the country profiles, please click here.
More information about Greece