Press Release

Media Update: United Nations Pakistan, 29 September 2021

29 September 2021

This Media Update includes: 

  • UNITED NATIONS - PRESS RELEASE : UN Secretary-General calls for accelerated action on jobs and social protection to avoid an uneven global recovery and prevent future crises
  • UNESCO - PRESS RELEASE : International Day for Universal Access to Information 2021 Marked by UNESCO and Partners




UN Secretary-General calls for accelerated action on jobs and social protection to avoid an uneven global recovery and prevent future crises

Deeply diverging recoveries will undermine trust and solidarity and make the world more vulnerable to future crises, including climate change

· Secretary-General to convene leaders on 28 September to mobilize action

· New Global Accelerator on Jobs and Social Protection platform launched to create 400 million jobs and extend social protection coverage to 4 billion people currently left unprotected. 

New York, 27 September—Investing in job-rich growth, social protection and a just transition to a net-zero emissions future, particularly in low -and middle-income countries, could prevent a further deepening of the inequalities between developed and developing economies that have been exacerbated during the COVID-19 pandemic, said UN Secretary-General, António Guterres, in a policy brief issued today.

At least US$982 billion in fiscal stimulus measures is needed to respond to the immediate labour market shocks of the crisis and to support a just transition, as well as US$ 1.2 trillion annually for social protection floors in low- and middle-income countries. No advanced economy has achieved economic and social progress without investing in social protection systems and quality public services that provide people with the necessary support to navigate the vicissitudes of their lives.

While the wealth of billionaires increased by over US$ 3.9 trillion between March and December 2020, the impact of the pandemic on the world of work, among other factors, increased the number of extremely poor by between 119 and 224 million people—the first increase in poverty in over 21 years.

· An estimated 8.8 percent of total working hours - equivalent to the hours worked in one year by 255 million full-time workers - were lost in 2020.

· This corresponds to a loss of US$3.3 trillion in labour income before government support.

· Because of the pandemic, there are an estimated 75 million fewer jobs in 2021 than there were before the crisis, and 23 million fewer projected in 2022.

The Secretary-General’s brief calls for urgent investments in a job-rich, sustainable and socially inclusive recovery. The public and private sectors should leverage finance to significantly ramp up such investments to get the world back on track to achieve the Sustainable Development Goals and to address ever increasing risks from climate change and environmental degradation that could jeopardize  1.2 billion jobs—equivalent to 40 percent of the global labour force.

A human-centred recovery from the pandemic needs employment and social protection policies to work in tandem, not only to improve people’s living standards, but also to help them navigate the challenges of a rapidly changing world of work and the transition towards the goal of net zero carbon emissions by 2050.

Accelerating job creation

To achieve a job-rich recovery and a just transition to a sustainable and inclusive economy, the Secretary-General is calling for a Global Accelerator for Jobs and Social Protection that would create at least 400 million jobs and extend social protection to 4 billion women, men and children currently without coverage.

To achieve this Goal, the Policy Brief entitled “Investing in Jobs and Social Protection for Poverty Eradication and a Sustainable Recovery” recommends several actions:

· Develop integrated national and inclusive recovery strategies for decent job creation, especially in the care and green sectors, universal social protection, and a just transition, and ensure they are aligned with macro-economic and fiscal policies and underpinned by sound data.

· Expand investment in Social Protection Floors as a percentage of GDP in national budgets.

· Design policy measures to extend social protection to workers in the informal economy, and to foster the progressive formalization of enterprises and employment, including in the care economy.

· Create active labour market policies to help workers upskill and re-skill to keep or change their job, adapt to the green and digital transitions.

· Develop a sound financial architecture to mobilize investments for decent jobs, social protection, and a just transition, including by channelling SDRs to support national recovery strategies to countries in need.

· Strengthen collaboration with the private sector to scale-up investments in strategic sectors to promote entrepreneurship, effectively reaching women and women-owned enterprises in particular, to close the skills gap

· Align strategies with the Paris Climate Accords, so that they support enterprises and workers, while also ensuring that vulnerable populations are not left behind in the transition to net-zero carbon emissions economies.

High-level Event on Jobs and Social Protection for Poverty Eradication

The UN Secretary-General will present the brief at a virtual high-level meeting at the UN on 28 September 2021, 09.00 -12.00 ET (15.00-18.00 CEST). The meeting is convened jointly with the ILO.  

Leaders from countries, along with the heads of major international organizations, multilateral banks and finance institutions, civil society, private sector and academia will discuss pathways

The High-Level Meeting on Jobs and Social Protection for Poverty Eradication will feature the UN Secretary-General delivering opening remarks, followed by Jamaican Prime Minister Mr. Andrew Holness as co-convener of the Financing for Development in the Era of COVID-19 and Beyond Initiative (FfDI), and Mr. Guy Ryder, Director-General, International Labour Organization. After, a moderated discussion will take place with Heads of the International Financial Institutions, Heads of States and Government and international organizations.

The Deputy Secretary-General Amina Mohammed will provide closing remarks.

The meeting is being organized under the aegis of the Financing for Development in the Era of COVID-19 and Beyond Initiative (FfDI) with the support of ILO.

For further information, please contact:

United Nations: Dan Shepard, email:, tel: +1 646 675 3286

International Labour Organization: Amber Barth, email:, tel: +1 212 697 0150





International Day for Universal Access to Information 2021 Marked by UNESCO and Partners

International Day for Universal Access to Information, “The right to Know – Building Back Better” was celebrated on September 28, 2021 by UNESCO with partners including the EU delegation to Pakistan, the Embassy of Sweden, the Embassy of the Netherlands and the global civil society organizations Free Press Unlimited (FPU). Some 50 participants from civil society, youth, media professionals, academia, international organizations, and diplomatic missions attended the event.

2021 is the sixth consecutive year of UNESCO marking the “International Day for Universal Access to Information” (IDUAI). In 2015, UNESCO adopted a resolution (38 C/70) to commemorate IDUAI every year. Access to Information is considered as the touchstone for all human rights including freedom of expression and media freedom. Its special relevance to Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) is also significant, in which it calls upon member states to adopt and implement constitutional, statutory and/or policy guarantees for public access to information.

The Ambassador of Sweden, H.E. Mr. Henrik Persson gave the welcome marks by recognizing the importance of access to information for building strong institutions. During the keynote address the honourable provincial minister of Balochistan, Mr. Zahoor Ahmed Buledi, stressed upon the need for more proactive disclosure of information by governments to strengthen citizen’s voices, accountability, and transparency.

During the event a panel of expert speakers including Ms. Amber Rahim Shamsi (veteran journalist), Mr. Mukhtar Ahmed (former information commissioner), Ms. Imaan Hazir Mazari (lawyer and human rights activist) and Mr. Zafarullah Khan (former executive director Pakistan Institute of Parliamentary Studies) expressed their opinions on the need to enhance access to information in the country. 

UNESCO Officer, Mr. Hamza Khan presented UNESCO Director General Audrey Azoulay’s message reiterating organization’s commitment to promote access to information and freedom of expression across the globe.

The right of universal access to information empowers citizens to make informed opinions thus strengthening democratic processes and ensuring the protection of fundamental human rights.


Media Update: United Nations Pakistan, 29 September 2021

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