Online consultation focusses on UNESCO goals

Permanent Secretary (Core Education) at the Ministry of Education Dr Shamsiah Zuraini Kanchanawati binti Haji Tajuddin as the Secretary-General of the Brunei Darussalam National Commission for United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) attended the Sub-Regional Online Consultation of National Commissions for UNESCO on The Preparation of The Draft Medium-Term Strategy for 2022-2029 (41 C/4) and The Draft Programme and Budget for 2022-2025 (41 C/5).

The online event was held from June 24 until yesterday.

Dr Shamsiah Zuraini Kanchanawati also chaired the second session of the meeting yesterday, according to the Ministry of Education press release.

The meeting was organised by UNESCO Cluster Offices in Jakarta, Bangkok and Beijing. It was attended by senior officials from over 16 UNESCO member states as well as representatives of international organisations and observers.

The consultation aimed to inform and provide guidance to the Director General of UNESCO on areas for UNESCO’s strategic positioning and leadership roles for its next medium-term strategic framework 2022-2029, as well as recommendations on future programme priorities of regional relevance for the organisation’s action in the next quadrennial programme cycle 2022-2025.

The draft documents will be submitted to the UNESCO’s Executive Board at its 210th session.

Permanent Secretary (Core Education) at the Ministry of Education Dr Shamsiah Zuraini Kanchanawati binti Haji Tajuddin and others during the online consultation. PHOTO: MOE

During the first session of the consultation in day one, UNESCO member states including Brunei Darussalam touched on the Medium Term Strategy for 2022-2029 where delegates shared the impact of COVID-19 on education, science, culture as well as areas such as natural sciences, social and human science as well as info-communication aspects in their countries.

The delegates also shared that the pandemic crisis did not only affect the public health globally but also triggered several challenges particularly in implementing future
sustainable development.

Issues on global solidarity and resources needed to mainstream global priorities as well as the importance of youth as contributors to a better change in the world were also raised by member states.

Building from the discussion on the first day, the second session yesterday focussed on the Programme and Budget for 2022-2025.

Member states touched on several discussions including ways to enhance UNESCO’s programmatic focus on education, culture, natural sciences, intergovernmental oceanographic commission, social and human sciences, and communication and information; to strengthen interdisciplinarity and intersectoral work; enhancing UNESCO’s presence in the world; strengthening UNESCO’s field presence and relevance; reinforcing UNESCO’s networks and partnerships; and leveraging public and private partnerships.

Chairperson Dr Shamsiah Zuraini Kanchanawati acknowledged the continuous support expressed by member states to the core functions and programmatic areas of UNESCO.

Several recommendations were also presented by member states for UNESCO to optimise resources, develop synergy and enhance its presence at national, regional and global levels.

There were also proposals for UNESCO to further reinforce its interdisciplinary and intersectoral work to address complex development challenges and to achieve its mandate.

Head of International Affairs Unit Walter Chong Meng Siong and officers from the Ministry of Education also participated.