Immediately following the COVID-19 outbreak in China, UNDP helped to procure emergency supplies and medical equipment.

As the virus began to spread globally we transitioned to assisting other countries in procuring supplies from China.

UNDP provided insights on where targeted COVID-19 response initiatives were needed and the kind of interventions required through our socio-economic impact assessment in 5 poverty counties in partnership with RCO, UNICEF and UNFPA.

Participants in the Spread the Word, Not the Virus online social media campaign.

Participants in the Spread the Word, Not the Virus online social media campaign.

36 million people gained increased awareness on effective use of PPE and COVID-19 precautions through the CO’s “Spread the Word, not the Virus” campaign on Chinese social media which mobilized hundreds of thousands of netizens to share crucial information in over 50 languages and dialects.

UNDP also provided policy recommendations on how to increase businesses’ resilience to future shocks while enhancing their ability to contribute to SDG achievement through analysis of how SMEs, which provide 80 percent of employment in China, are recovering from the pandemic.

UNDP has been working to improve livelihoods across several provinces and sectors. These efforts supported China’s aim of eliminating extreme rural poverty by the end of 2020.

Millions of beneficiaries, including more than 200,000 students and teachers, have better access to clean drinking water and cleaner environments through initiatives on river basin management, sustainable sewage treatment and clean water projects.

Students line up to receive clean water from a newly installed water purifier.

Students line up to receive clean water from a newly installed water purifier.

More than 10,000 farmers benefited from trainings and integration of technological innovations, leading to a positive impact on their household incomes.

A farm in Gaoqiao Township of Chongqin, a pilot project site.

A farm in Gaoqiao Township of Chongqin, a pilot project site.

Internationally, to assist in building back better from Cyclone Idai in Malawi, Mozambique and Zimbabwe by repairing schools and houses, UNDP China helped to facilitate technical and financial resources, with China International Development Cooperation Agency (CIDCA), through the South-South Cooperation Assistance Fund (SSCAF).

Workers rebuild rooftops in Chikwaka, Zimbabwe

Workers rebuild rooftops in Chikwaka, Zimbabwe

In our efforts to combat climate change, UNDP has been working across a range of sectors to reduce carbon emissions and other GHG’s.

We have supported policy innovation on hydrogen-based clean energy solutions and established Fuel Cell Vehicle (FCV) demonstrations in 8 cities including hydrogen vocational training for the future of renewable jobs.

UNDP demonstrates fuel cell vehicles (FCVs) and hydrogen vocational training in 8 cities that were scaled up to 7492 vehicles across China, enacting hydrogen policy incentives rolled out in 23 provinces.

UNDP demonstrates fuel cell vehicles (FCVs) and hydrogen vocational training in 8 cities that were scaled up to 7492 vehicles across China, enacting hydrogen policy incentives rolled out in 23 provinces.

UNDP has also been supporting energy efficiency, including efficient lighting in public buildings and promotion of green logistics. A new sector in 2020 was the industrial electric motor sector, where we helped reduce CO2 by 23.12m tonnes by supporting more than 600 motor manufacturers to phase out more than 80 million low-efficiency motors.

We also reduced
21.6m tonnes of CO2 in industrial-commercial refrigeration.

A factory producing electric motors in Southern China.

A factory producing electric motors in Southern China.

Protecting biodiversity and reducing or eliminating harmful chemicals and pollutants are critical aspects of UNDP’s work in China.

UNDP supported the sustainable management of national parks in 8 provinces. One highlight of this year was restoring 1,730mu within the Przewalski Gazelle habitat, equal to 214 football fields.

Under the GEF wetlands program, UNDP supported the protection of an additional 2.94 million ha of wetlands this year, roughly the size of El Salvador.

The Altai Mountains and Wetlands in Xinjiang.

The Altai Mountains and Wetlands in Xinjiang.

More than 10,000 people in 3 provinces were protected from exposure to Persistent Organic Pollutants (POPs) through our work on secondary copper, zinc, lead and aluminum.

This year we also assisted in the continued phase-out of Endosulfan, a potentially harmful pesticide used in agriculture, by piloting alternative technologies covering 55,000 m2.

2020 was a banner year for SDG Financing, where we are working to bridge the SDG financing gap, estimated at 750 billion a year in Asia-Pacific alone.

UNDP developed and launched our SDG Financing Taxonomy and impact standards for SDG investors, which were adopted by New Development Bank for an SDG-aligned bond issuance.

We also shed light on where the private sector can invest with the governments to ensure positive social and environmental impact, while making financial gain through publishing of an SDG Investor Map

We have also continued our work with the philanthropic sector, providing lessons and recommendations for policy advocacy, enhanced collaboration and boosting SDG financing. We examined which approaches were effective, as well as challenges, and what can be done to overcome them through the Philanthropy for Sustainable Development Report and an online portal.

From A.I. and big data to gamification and digital literacy training, 2020 has been an innovative year for UNDP.

A Yunnan embroidery craftsman showing demonstrating how to use digital functions on a mobile phone.

Student participants in the 2020 National Dialogue in China.

Participants in DeeCamp 2020, an A.I. bootcamp hosted by Sinovation Ventures.

A Yunnan embroidery craftsman showing demonstrating how to use digital functions on a mobile phone.

Student participants in the 2020 National Dialogue in China.

Participants in DeeCamp 2020, an A.I. bootcamp hosted by Sinovation Ventures.

We helped make aging entrepreneurs in China more resilient to crises and disruptions by supporting them to increase digital literacy and their capacity to leverage digital solutions.

We championed youth entrepreneurs who are using digital technologies to create innovative solutions for the new normal post-COVID-19 through the 2020 National Dialogue in China, part of the regional Youth Co:Lab initiative.

In addition, we helped to educate aspiring tech entrepreneurs on how to integrate the SDGs into A.I.-based development solutions through partnerships with private sector companies and educational institutions.