Macro Focus - Swedbank’s Sustainability Indicators show more progress is needed. Will EU’s recovery fund help in reaching targets?
Swedbank’s Sustainability Indicators monitor the progress towards the UN 2030 Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), summarised in three pillars: (E) environmental protection, (S) social inclusion, and (G) governance. Among the Nordics, Denmark comes out as a leader. Denmark scores the best in two pillars out of three – environmental protection and governance. Norway leads the social inclusion pillar, as Sweden has dropped out of the first position. Norway also leads with 21 indicators out of 41 at top marks; however, it scores low in gender pay gap and resource productivity.
- Environmental protection area remains pivotal in speeding up progress – no country is on track to meet environmental goals in UN 2030 Agenda.
- All Nordic countries perform well on governance and institutions, whereas the Baltics have a lot of catching up to do.
- EU’s recovery fund provides new opportunities to reach the targets.
Among the Baltics, the situation is more pessimistic - no country reaches 80% of the target in any pillar, with Estonia slightly ahead of the others. Governance is the most worrying pillar, with no country reaching even 60% of the benchmark, and Latvia and Lithuania even having downward trends during the last five years. Lithuania demonstrates a downward trend also in the social inclusion pillar, as does Estonia in environmental protection. Results indicate that all Baltics have a lot of catching up to do; hence, various measures to speed up the progress should be taken.
However, with no or even negative progress towards the UN 2030 goals made during the last five years, some countries seem “out of the game” in reaching them. But here comes the Covid-19 crisis and EU’s new recovery instrument which could spur progress, especially in the Baltics.
Greta Ilekyte, email@example.com, +370 6 201 5270