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Cabo Verde*
Voluntary National Review 2021

Watch video of panel where the VNR was presented






  • Facing COVID-19

In the last 5 years Cabo Verde faced 3 terrible years of drought but still recovered its economic growth, but in 2020, like other SIDS, the country faced a harsh recession of 14.8%, due to the impact of COVID-19 pandemic. The year 2021 should be the year of consolidation of the first cycle of sustainable development, but instead it will be the year of sustainable recovery. The existing social vulnerabilities are amplified, therefore health, economic and social emergency are the budget priorities, with the support of the international community specially on the implementation of the National Plan for Response, Recovery and Promotion of the Economy. Also, with the support of the international community, Cabo Verde aims to vaccinate a minimum of 70% of adults in 2021 with full coverage by 2023.

  • Gender Parity

Cabo Verde made remarkable progress in the area of gender equality that will be shared with the international community, with emphasis on significant and sustainable reduction of GBV crimes, and full achievement of gender parity in political decision-making bodies, with the implementation of the parity law. Cabo Verde aspire to be a country without gender discrimination, by promoting economic opportunities for women and girls, stimulating diversified educational and professional paths, deepening the equal participation of women and men in spaces and positions of power and decision-making, and developing policies and measures to eliminate all forms of gender-based violence.

  • Human capital

Cabo Verde elected the development of human capital as the main accelerator of sustainable development and young people are the most important segment, with increasing elderly population. The country made remarkable progress in the last 4 years on education, becoming one of the few countries with free primary and secondary education. Reforms to promote technical and professional education from the 9th grade onwards will contribute to the massification of the professional qualification of young people. With these reforms coupled with those underway in higher education, and with investment in health for all, the aim is to develop human capital, to accelerate economic growth and reduce inequality and poverty. We urge the international community to accompany the country's efforts, within the framework of the strategic plan for human capital development.

  • Diversifying the economy

This pandemic reinforces the imperative of diversifying the economy as an essential measure of resilience to external shocks. Cabo Verde Ambition 2030 set the commitment for the diversification of the economy, by integrating the country into new global value chains. The Cabo Verdean authorities prioritize, the acceleration of energy transition, development of sustainable tourism, digital economy, industry, culture and creative industries, transition to the blue economy, international health platform and transformation of agriculture. The national authorities invite the international community to invest in Cabo Verde, especially through public-private partnerships.

  • SIDS the financing of sustainable development

The losses suffered by SIDS economies and the slow recovery, jeopardizes the continuity of the national effort for financing development under the Addis Ababa Action Plan. The need for better consideration of the Multidimensional Vulnerability Index as a specific criterion for these states, subject to disasters and more vulnerable to climate change, in accessing official development assistance and concessional financing is deepened, as well as the creation of a SIDS Compact as the mechanism per excellence for financing sustainable recovery. The national authorities propose to promote with other SIDS countries and with the support of the United Nations and other development partners, the creation of an international commitment on "Post-COVID-19 economic recovery and sustainable development financing in SIDS".

  • Debt Forgiveness

From the COVID-19 pandemic and Cabo Verde Ambition 2030, structural changes and priorities emerge, regarding the fight against impoverishment, health security and specially the diversification of the economy. It´s therefore, unavoidable the expansion of public investment, in a context of over-indebtedness aggravated by the pandemic and of Middle-Income Countries.  It is therefore vital to forgive, even partially, the foreign debt, so that investments with a transformative impact are not postponed, but also to avoid the blockage, if not the collapse of the state, the regression and the destruction of the dreams of all Cabo Verdeans. 


Voluntary National Review 2018


  1. The Strategic Sustainable Development Plan (PEDS): the vehicle for implementing the SDGs in Cabo Verde
    Ensuring alignment with the SDGs and with universal principles of human rights, the Strategic Sustainable Development Plan (PEDS 2017-2021) constitutes the main vehicle for Cabo Verde to fulfill the sustainable development agenda. As such, the collaboration of cooperation agencies and local and international partners is vital for the financing thereof.

  2. Investments in good governance, gender equality and human rights, reproductive health and the development of human capital have been key for Cabo Verde’s development achievement.
    Cabo Verde graduated to the status of Middle Income Country in 2007, thanks to its investments in sexual and reproductive health and a particular emphasis on maternal-child health, a key factor in the demographic transition, combined with investments in good governance and in the development of human capital, in education, health and volunteer work, which enhanced participation and citizenship.

  3. As a SIDS, a MICS and a highly indebted and vulnerable country, Cabo Verde requires alternative, non-traditional mechanisms and indicators for accessing development financing.
    In line with the Addis Ababa Action Agenda, Cabo Verde urges the international community to collaborate with small island developing states and middle income countries in accessing financing, using new mechanisms and partnerships that encourage greater public and private financial participation in these economies and the use of methodologies and indicators that go beyond economic growth.

  4. Localization of SDGs and focus on the most vulnerable groups as a key integrated strategy in order to ensure that No One is Left Behind
    Localization of development management instruments and on state reform to reduce the inequalities and regional asymmetries, with greater efforts in terms of financing to increase the value of local economies, focus on people and highly vulnerable groups and promote alignment with the SDGs. Decentralization, as a best practice of integrated policy that contributes toward ensuring that no one is left behind and achieving the SDGs on a local level. Municipal Strategic Sustainable Development Plans (PEMDS), are an example of participation within the framework of local multi-stakeholder platforms and promotion of the SDGs.

  5. Achieving universal and sustainable access to energy, water and sanitation is crucial to sustainable development and to leaving no one behind, and requires considerable support from existing partners
    Equitable, universal and sustainable access to energy, water and sanitation is among the greatest challenges for the country, and is crucial for the building of its economic, social and environmental resilience, requiring technical and financial partnerships to the development of renewable energies, with impact in the reduction of tariffs and water losses, and improvement of access to water and sanitation

  6. Investment in the blue economy is an example of integrated policy for Cabo Verde’s sustainable development
    Valorization of the blue economy as an important vector in Cabo Verde´s dynamic integration into the world economic system, contributing to security, sustainable development of marine resources, improving its tourism sector and shipping services. Investments in the blue economy contribute to inclusive economic growth and reduction of inequalities, optimizing conditions for the construction of economic, social and environmental resilience as a best practice of integrated policy for achieving the SDGs.

  7. Commitment to the enhancement of the national statistical system and development of global governance indicators
    Cabo Verde’s international leadership of the Praia City Group is a sign of its strong commitment to support the implementation of the SDGs at the global level and to the strengthening of its own statistical system as a necessary condition for operationalizing the principle of “Leaving No One Behind” and for being able to measure the country’s progress toward the SDGs. This requires support from the international community to carry out the priorities of the National Statistical Development Strategy for the 2017-2021 period.

  8. Cabo Verde’s dynamic insertion in the world economic system
    Making Cabo Verde a relevant country in the middle Atlantic in economic, security and diplomatic terms and the promotion of freedom and democracy is the main orientation of its development process, which also values the various generations of the Cabo Verdean diaspora community, namely its contribution to development financing and promotion of the country’s image.
Focal point
Mr. Edna Barreto
Minister plenipotentiary

Partnerships & Commitments
The below is a listing of all partnership initiatives and voluntary commitments where Cabo Verde* is listed as a partner in the Partnerships for SDGs online platform.
Integrated Water and Wastewater Resource Management in Atlantic and Indian Ocean SIDS

Cabo Verde, Comoros, Maldives, Mauritius, São Tomé & Príncipe and Seychelles may seem like they have little in common, but as small islands, they face very similar challenges. The countries − located in the Atlantic and Indian oceans − all share problems relating to the scarcity and contamination of freshwater supplies; lack of solid waste management facilities, over-exploitation and poor management of groundwater resources; increasing pressure on agricultural production; and disappearing biodiversity. Therefore, the Global Environment Facility has funded a full-sized project to...[more]

UNEP; UNDP; UNOPS; GEF; Governments of Maldives, Mauritius, Seychelles, Comoros, Sao Tome and Principe and Cabo Verde
Sustainable Development Goals
Lighthouses Initiative

IRENA has developed the SIDS Lighthouses Initiative to support the strategic deployment of renewable energy in SIDS, to bring clarity to policy makers regarding the required steps, and to enable targeted action. As a joint effort of SIDS and development partners, this framework for action will assist in transforming SIDS energy systems through the establishment of the enabling conditions for a renewable energy-based future, by moving away from developing projects in isolation to a holistic approach that considers all relevant elements spanning from policy and market frameworks, through technol...[more]

Antigua and Barbuda, Mauritius, Bahamas, Nauru, Barbados, Palau, Cabo Verde, Samoa, Comoros, São Tomé and Príncipe, Cook Islands, St. Vincent and the Grenadines, Fiji, Seychelles, Grenada, Solomon Islands, Guyana, Tonga, Kiribati, Trinidad and Tobago, Maldives, Tuvalu, Marshall Islands, Vanuatu, Federated States of Micronesia, ENEL, New Zealand, European Union, Norway, France, SE4ALL, Germany, ...[more]
Action Network
Sustainable Development Goals
United Nations