Japan commits $1 billion to spur UN goals to fight poverty

UNITED NATIONS (AP) — Japan says it is committing $1 billion by 2018 to promote the U.N. goals of combating poverty, achieving gender equality, promoting good government and preserving the environment by 2030.

Japanese Foreign Minister Fumio Kishida made the announcement Monday at a high-level meeting assessing progress toward meeting the 17 goals adopted by world leaders.

He said the $1 billion will be focused on children and young people, particularly in the areas of education, health, gender equality and reducing risk from natural disasters.

Kishida said Japan's vision for the U.N. goals "is to create a diverse and inclusive society in which no one is left behind."

Secretary-General Antonio Guterres launched a progress report on implementing the goals saying "the rate of progress in many areas is far slower than needed."