The United Nations Secretary-General, Ban Ki-moon has named three world leaders to co-chair a High-Level Panel on the post-Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) framework on development.


Making the announcement Wednesday, May 9th, at the United Nations Headquarters in New York, Mr. Ki-moon named President Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono of Indonesia; President Ellen Johnson Sirleaf of Liberia; and Prime Minister David Cameron of the United Kingdom as co-chairs of this High-Level Panel on the post-MDG framework on development, expressing his gratitude for their commitment.


An Executive Mansion release said the three world leaders, representing the continents of Asia, Africa and Europe, immediately issued a Joint Statement, accepting their appointment as co-chairs.


With the target date set for achieving the MDGs due to expire in three years, Mr. Ban reiterated the need to launch a process to establish Sustainable Development Goals that build on the MDGs, find better ways to measure progress that go beyond Gross Domestic Product, and advance action to improve people’s lives through decent work, social protection and the empowerment of women and young people.


"We need a clear direction for enhancing the global institutional architecture to address sustainable development challenges," he said, adding that to achieve all these goals, all Member States must harness the power of partnership to shift the world onto a more sustainable trajectory of growth and development.


Mr. Ban stated that he plans to conduct further consultations regarding the composition of the High-Level Panel, mindful of the appropriate balance across geography, gender, generations, and constituencies.


According to the release, he is expected to announce the full panel following the RIO+20 Summit Meeting scheduled for Rio de Janeiro, Brazil in June this year.


In their Joint Statement accepting the preferment, Presidents Yudhoyono, Johnson Sirleaf, and Prime Minister Cameron said: "We are delighted to have been asked by the UN Secretary-General to co-chair the High-Level Panel on the post-MDG framework on development".


The Millennium Development Goals have shaped the world’s approach to international development for a generation, helping to put millions of children into school and save countless lives. "We still have some way to go, but we also want to build on what has been achieved so far," they noted.


The Statement continued: "In the years since the MDGs were agreed, we have made significant progress and learned many lessons on poverty reduction. We now know more about the critical role that economic growth; trade, tackling corruption; effective government and open societies play in creating wealth and unlocking the potential of the poorest countries. We look forward to working together to ensure the full realization of the MDGs, and to listening to many more voices to set out an ambitious, new agenda for ending poverty in the years beyond 2015."


Derived from earlier international development targets, the MDGs were officially established following the Millennium Summit in 2000, where all world leaders present adopted the UN Millennium Declaration.


The MDGs are eight international development goals that all 189 UN Member States (there are now 193) and at least 23 international organizations agreed to achieve by the year 2015.


The Presidents conclude: "eradicating extreme poverty and hunger; achieving universal primary education; promoting gender equality and empowering women; reducing child mortality rates; improving maternal health; combating HIV/AIDS, malaria and other diseases; ensuring environmental sustainability; and developing a global partnership for development. Each of the eight Goals has specific stated targets and dates for achieving those targets. The aim of the MDGs is to encourage development by improving social and economic conditions in the world’s poorest countries".