The seventy-sixth session of the United Nations General Assembly (UNGA 76) will open on 14 September 2021 at the United Nations headquarters in New York under the theme: "Building resilience through hope to recover from COVID-19, rebuild sustainably, respond to the needs of the planet, respect the rights of people, and revitalise the United Nations". The General Debate will take place from 21 September through 27 September 2021. 

UNIDO will be actively involved in conversations on how to leverage the post-pandemic response from various angles within its inclusive and sustainable industrial development  (ISID) framework to further accelerate the achievements of the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development and its 17 SDGs. Find an overview of selected high-level meetings and side-events below!

UNIDO's engagement and other activities

  • 16 September 2021 - Launch of the Council of Engineers for the Energy Transition
  • 20 September 2021 - SDG Moment
  • 22 September 2021 - Launch of the Gender and Energy Compact
  • 22 September 2021 - Side-events at UNFSS
  • 23 September 2021 - UN Food Systems Summit (UNFSS)
  • 24 September 2021 - UN High-level Dialogue on Energy (HLDE)
  • 24 September 2021 - Side-event at HLDE
  • 27 September 2021 - GMIS Side-event
  • 28 September 2021 - 4th High-Level Event on the Third Industrial Development Decade for Africa (IDDA III)
  • CEET

    When: 16 September 2021 at 18:15-19:30  PM CEST 

    (Co-) Organizers: UNIDO and SDSN 

    General information

    Engineers are key actors within this process, as they have the technical knowledge, skills, and expertise to plan and implement an inclusive and sustainable pathway to decarbonization.

    The Council of Engineers for the Energy Transition (CEET) will be chaired by UNIDO and  the UN Sustainable Development Solutions Network (SDSN), and will engage important partners from the United Nations (UN), academia and business sectors. SDSN, in conjunction with UNIDO and several other UN agencies, will constitute a Steering Committee to oversee a global, high-level body of engineers and energy systems experts to contribute to the UN Secretary General’s Coalition to achieve carbon neutrality by 2050, and provide engineering pathways to achieve comprehensive decarbonization by mid-century.

    The work of the CEET will be undertaken by recognized global experts operating in their personal capacities and responding to requests for information and guidance by the UN.

    Where: Online; please register here.

    News item covering the event is available here.

    Find the event recording here.

  • SDG moment

    When: 20 September 2021 at 3:00 AM - 12:00 PM CEST 

    Organizer: Secretary-General António Guterres

    Event objectives: 

    • As the world is grappling with the COVID-19 pandemic and major challenges to progress across the 17 Sustainable Development Goals, the SDG Moment will seek to: 
    • Reinforce the continued relevance of the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development and build momentum in advance of major summits and intergovernmental meetings.   
    • Highlight urgent actions needed to ensure COVID-19 response and recovery efforts are equitable, inclusive and accelerate the transition to sustainable development.   
    • Demonstrate that transformative change at scale is possible between now and 2030.  

    Participants: The meeting will convene leaders from over 30 Member States as well as champions for the SDGs from civil society, the private sector and international partners. 

    Where: It will be accessible to everyone, everywhere through UN media channels including UN WebTVFacebookTwitter and YouTube.

  • Gender Energy Compact

    When: 22 September 2021 at 13:30-13:50  PM CEST 

    Where: Online; please register here

    (Co-) Organizers: UNIDO, GWNET, ENERGIA, Iceland, Sweden, Kenya, Ecuador, Nepal 

    General information: 

    The Gender Energy Compact and its guiding principles are being developed through a collaborative process. Stakeholders are invited to sign up to the coalition, which will be officially launched during the UN High-level Dialogue in September 2021. All signatories to the Gender Energy Compact will be invited to submit their own individual Energy Compacts to capture their organization’s specific commitments between now and 2030 to move towards gender equality and women’s empowerment, as well as support the achievement of SDG7 and SDG5.

    Launch will be done jointly by:

    • Minister of Foreign Affairs, Iceland
    • Assistant-Secretary-General and Deputy Executive Director, UN Women 


    New Skills UNGA

    Theme: How can we motivate people to learn new skills? 

    When: 22 September 2021 at 14:00 PM CET

    Where: Online; please learn more here

    (Co-) Organizers: UNIDO and European Training Foundation (ETF) 

    General information:

    Motivating people to learn new skills remains a challenge in the agri-business sector. For many developing countries, quality education and training is not adequate to meet new demands and address technological, social and environmental challenges. This workshop, as part of the LKDF's flagship event - LKDF Forum,  will focus on the priorities for setting strategies to stimulate employees to skill, up-skill or re-skill according to societal, greening or technological changes. It will reflect the different solutions around: the levers to motivate employees to skill, up-skill or re-skill and their effectiveness; potential changes to improve the current approach(es); and strategies to motivate people to embark on a skill journey.



    Theme: Success Mindset – Entrepreneurial Skills for Youth Action (Masterclass)

    When: 22 September 2021 at 14:00 - 15:15 PM CET

    Where: Online; please register here

    (Co-) Organizers: UNIDO, Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO), United States Agency for International Development (USAID), the Italian Agency for Development Cooperation (AICS) and HP Foundation

    General information:

    This masterclass led by UNIDO will feature Mashrou3i - a joint project by UNIDO, USAID, AICS and the HP Foundation designed to foster youth entrepreneurship in Tunisia. The episode will start by introducing Hayfa’s smart farm and the business training she received from the Mashrou3i project. This will be followed by a live interactive training on the “success mindset” from an HP LIFE trainer.

    Please find more information about UNIDO's contribution to the Summit here.


    When: 23 September 2021 

    Organizer: Secretary-General António Guterres

    Event description: The Food Systems Summit (UNFSS) aims to deliver progress on all 17 SDGs through a food systems approach, leveraging the interconnectedness of food systems to global challenges such as hunger, climate change, poverty, and inequality. The Summit will bring together key players from the worlds of science, business, policy, healthcare, and academia, as well as farmers, indigenous people, youth organizations, consumer groups, environmental activists, and other key stakeholders. UNIDO, particularly through its Department of Agri-business, supports the Secretary-General’s call for action.

    Where: Register for the event here

    Please find more information about UNIDO's contribution to the Summit above and here.

    The UNFSS social media toolkit is available here.

  • HLEF

    When: 24 September 2021

    Organizer: Secretary-General António Guterres

    Where: Online; please join here.

    Event description: The UN High-level Dialogue on Energy (HLDE) aims to mobilize commitments and action to ensure access to affordable, reliable, sustainable and modern energy for all by 2030 and net zero emissions by 2050, in line with the 2030 Agenda and the Paris Agreement on climate change. National, regional and city governments, businesses, NGOs, youth and other stakeholders have been asked to present Energy Compacts, setting out their voluntary commitments and concrete plans for achieving access to clean, affordable energy for all and net zero emissions.

    The Dialogue will result in a global roadmap, building on the outcome of the Ministerial Thematic Forums and the reports of Technical Working Groups released in June 2021.


    Opening Remarks:

    • António Guterres, Secretary-General of the United Nations

    Leadership of the High-level Dialogue on Energy:

    • LIU Zhenmin, Under-Secretary-General for Economic and Social Affairs and Secretary-General of the High-level Dialogue
    • Achim Steiner, Administrator of the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP), UNEnergy Co-Chair and Dialogue Co-Chair
    • Damilola Ogunbiyi, Special Representative of the Secretary-General for Sustainable Energy for All, UN-Energy Co-Chair, Dialogue Co-Chair and Dialogue High-Level Champion

    Co-Leads of the Technical Working Groups for the High-level Dialogue on Energy - Working Group 4 on Innovation, Technology and Data:

    • Qu Dongyu, Director General of the Food and Agriculture Organization of the UN (FAO)
    • Maimunah Mohd Sharif, Executive Director of the United Nations Human Settlements Programmed (UN-Habitat)
    • Li Yong, Director General of the UN Industrial Development Organization (UNIDO)

    Full programme of speakers is available here.

    Where: Watch online webstream at UNTV. No registration required.

    Find concept note of the event here.

  • Youth

    When: 24 September 2021 

    Theme: Championing Youth Mainstreaming in Energy Compacts

    When: 24 September 2021 at 13:00 – 14:15 PM CEST 

    (Co-) Organizers: UNIDO, UN-Energy, SDG7YC and Student Energy 

    Where: Online; please register here.

  • (Co-) Organizers: UNIDO and GMOL

    Details coming soon...

  • IDDA3

    Theme: Strengthening Africa’s Pharmaceutical Industry – learning the lessons from COVID-19

    (Co-) Organizers: African Union Commission, UNECA, AUDA-NEPAD, AfDB, AfroChampions Initiative, UNOSAA, Afreximbank

    When: 28 September 2021 at 15:00 - 17:00 PM CEST

    Where: Online; please register here.

    General information:

    The pandemic has highlighted Africa´s vulnerability due to its reliance on imports for much of its vaccines, medicines and other health product needs. This high-level event will focus on the public health benefits that a stronger pharmaceutical industry in Africa can bring and the contribution it can make to economic development. The event will deliberate on key challenges that need to be overcome to strengthen health industries. 

    Event objectives:

    • Discuss and highlight tangible action areas, solutions and necessary policy measures to boost Africa´s pharmaceutical industry,
    • Explore innovative solutions for the systemic barriers hindering development of the continent´s health industries.
    • Discuss optimal approaches for mobilising investment for Africa´s pharmaceutical sector.
    • Highlight on-going initiatives to strengthen the sector and opportunities for new technologies to contribute to transformational change.
    • Identify how current high-level focus can be translated into long term engagement.

    Expected participants:

    Africa’s industrial development stakeholders including African Heads of State/Government, Ministers, the African Union Commission, UN agencies, African regional organizations and the private sector, financial institutions, donors, civil society and non-governmental organizations, academia and media.


    • A joint communique on industrial development of Africa´s pharmaceutical sector;
    • High-level consensus on the need to expedite and support local production of pharmaceuticals and health industry in Africa;
    • Recommendations on key initiatives to advance Africa’s pharmaceutical and health industries;
    • Mobilisation of partnerships and resources in support of Africa’s pharmaceutical industry agenda.

    Confirmed speakers at the Opening Session:

    • LI Yong, Director General, UNIDO
    • Amina J. Mohammed, Deputy Secretary-General of the United Nations
    • Vera Songwe, Executive Secretary, UNECA
    • Albert Muchanga, AUC Commissioner for Economic Development, Trade, Industry and Mining
    • Akinwumi Adesina, President, AfDB
    • Ibrahim Assane Mayaki, Chief Executive Officer, AUDA-NEPAD
    • Paulo Gomez, Co-Chair, AfroChampions Initiative
    • Cristina Duarte, Under-Secretary-General and Special Adviser on Africa to the United Nations Secretary-General

    Find details about this event here.

The Journal of the United Nations includes all planned meetings and a list of all high-level events can be accessed here.

Also, we encourage to make use of the UNGA Guide 2021 in which more information on planned side events are published.

UNGA76 will be broadcasted live and on-demand on UN Web TV.

Follow the latest event updates on social media using #UNGA76.