The Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) are globally accepted goals that aim to end poverty, fight inequality and injustice, and protect the planet and ensure peace and prosperity for all people. Until 2030, 17 key areas were selected, the implementation of which could potentially lead any country to sustainable development of all major spheres of life and the solution of global problems affecting every person in this world.
Industry is a driving force for development, and strong infrastructure is essential to ensure its sustainability. Economic growth, social development and climate protection measures rely heavily on investment in infrastructure, sustainable industrial development and technological advancement. In view of the rapidly changing global economic landscape and growing inequality, sustained growth must include industrialization, which, firstly, provides all people with access to opportunities, and secondly, relies on innovation and resilient infrastructure. Therefore, the UN Goal No. 9 – Build resilient infrastructure, promote inclusive and sustainable industrialization and foster innovation, proposes to solve these problems by 2030 and to double the share of industrial production in the GDP of underdeveloped countries.
This goal encompasses three important aspects of sustainable development: infrastructure, industrialisation and innovation. Infrastructure provides the basic physical systems and structures essential to the operation of a society or enterprise. Industrialisation drives economic growth, creates job opportunities and thereby reduces income poverty. Innovation advances the technological capabilities of industrial sectors and prompts the development of new skills. Inclusive and sustainable industrial development is the primary source of income generation, allows for rapid and sustained increases in living standards for all people, and provides the technological solutions needed for environmentally sound industrialisation.
What is the problem?
Many developing countries still lack basic infrastructure such as roads, information and communications technology, sanitation, electricity and water supply. Approximately 1–1.15 billion people lack access to reliable telephone services. 2.5 billion people worldwide lack access to basic sanitation services and nearly 800 million people lack access to water resources. In developing countries, only about 30 percent of agricultural products are processed industrially.
World Industrialization and Infrastructure Facts
Investments in infrastructure (transport, irrigation systems, energy supply, information and communication technologies) are essential to achieve sustainable development and empower people around the world.
Most developing countries lack basic infrastructure: roads, information and communications technology, sanitation, electricity and water supplies. In particular, 16% of the people on the planet do not have access to mobile broadband. And in many African countries, lack of infrastructure reduces enterprise productivity by an average of 40%.
The main driving force behind economic development, employment and social stability is the manufacturing industry. In Europe and North America, the volume of conventional net production of this sector in per capita terms is $ 4.5 thousand, in the least developed countries – only $ 100.
The overall employment rate is growing due to the growth of industry: for every new job in industry, there are 2.2 jobs in other industries.
The most important link for development in the early stages of industrialization are small and medium-sized enterprises engaged in industrial processing and manufacturing. They also tend to be the leading job creators. Today they account for more than 90% of global business and up to 60% of jobs.
The least developed countries have great potential for industrializing industries such as food, beverage, textiles and clothing, with good prospects for increasing employment and productivity.
In developing countries, only 30% of agricultural products are processed industrially. In countries with a high level of income, this figure is 98%, which indicates the great potential of developing countries in the agro-industry.
How are COVID-19 and SDG9 related?
Information and communications technology is at the forefront of the COVID-19 response. The crisis has accelerated the digitalization of many businesses and services, including teleworking and video conferencing systems in and outside the workplace, as well as providing access to healthcare, education and essential goods and services. As the pandemic is transforming the way we work, communicate with each other, study at school, and shop for basic necessities, bridging the digital divide has never been more important for the 3.6 billion people who are left without an internet connection, without access to online education, employment or life-saving health and sanitation advice.
As the acute phase of the COVID-19 crisis ends, governments will need infrastructure investment more than ever to accelerate economic recovery, create jobs, reduce poverty and spur productive investment. The World Bank estimates that developing countries need to invest about 4.5% of GDP to achieve the Sustainable Development Goals while limiting global warming to no more than 2 degrees Celsius.
Investing in infrastructure, promoting inclusive and sustainable industrialization, and supporting technology development, research and innovation are the three drivers of economic growth and sustainable development. They enable countries to reduce poverty by creating jobs, stimulating growth and promoting the development and improvement of physical infrastructure, which are key to business and society. These factors play a key role in the implementation and popularization of new technologies, stimulating international trade and creating an enabling environment for efficient use of resources.
Latitudo for SDG #9
Monitor kilometers of electricity grids by identifying points where vegetation growth could disrupt electrical transmission.
How does it do this? Through the analysis of satellite images! It sends an alert signal, improving maintenance work, preventing power outages minimizing in situ checks.
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