logo_ffdiii27 July 2015: The UN General Assembly (UNGA) has endorsed the outcome of the Third International Conference on Financing for Development (FfD3), the Addis Ababa Action Agenda (AAAA). The endorsement occurred during an UNGA plenary meeting where delegates adopted resolution A/69/L.82 titled ‘Addis Ababa Action Agenda of the Third International Conference on Financing for Development,’ which includes the AAAA as an annex.

At the beginning of the meeting, the UNGA also paid tribute to the memory of Roble Olhaye, Permanent Representative of Djibouti and Ambassador of Djibouti to the US, who passed away on 22 July 2015.

In resolution A/69/L.82, adopted on 27 July 2015, the UNGA: recalls its resolution 68/204 on the follow-up to the International Conference on Financing for Development, in which it decided to convene FfD3, as well as resolutions 68/279 and 69/278 on the modalities for FfD3; endorses the AAAA adopted by the Conference; and expresses its “profound gratitude” to the Government and people of Ethiopia for hosting FfD3 and for providing support.

Sam Kutesa, UNGA President, said the AAAA is a comprehensive framework for financing sustainable development with concrete deliverables, policies and actions that will support the implementation of the post-2015 development agenda. He called on delegates to do “whatever it will take to ensure that the Addis Ababa Action Agenda is fully implemented.”

UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon said that by launching the AAAA, “we launch a new era of cooperation and global partnership” and “provide the foundation for success” at the upcoming UN Summit to adopt the post-2015 development agenda in September, and at the 21st session of the Conference of the Parties (COP 21) to the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) in December. He observed that many initiatives were launched during the FfD3 in addition to the AAAA, including the Addis Tax Initiative, increased commitments from development banks, and a new financing partnership for women’s and children’s health. He also said the AAAA provides a guide for action by all stakeholders, and a strong accountability mechanism, noting that “next year’s first Financing for Development Forum will give the international community an important opportunity to assess progress in implementation.”

The UN Secretariat clarified that the implementation of the recommendations contained in the AAAA will give rise to additional UN resources and possibly extra budgetary resources and that the UN Secretary-General would submit a revised estimate report related to that matter (for the years 2016-2017) for consideration by the UNGA at its 70th session.

Member States then provided statements. Several developing countries noted the complementarity of the AAAA and the post-2015 outcome document. Venezuela expressed reservation on the AAAA, including on: rationalizing inefficient fossil fuel subsidies (paragraph 31); and low-carbon economies and carbon pricing mechanisms (paragraphs 60 and 69). South Africa for the Group of 77 and China (G-77/China) highlighted that, in the context of the current post-2015 negotiations, the integrity of the post-2015 and of the FfD3 processes must be respected as they are different in scope and purpose, and the post-2015 means of implementation (MOI) cannot be a substitute or be replaced by the AAAA, but the AAAA should support and supplement those MOI. He called for adequate financing, noting this is an area where developed countries should demonstrate “leadership and commitment.” He added that “the position of the Group is on record” that some issues are not adequately accommodated in the AAAA, including the explicit reaffirmation of the principle of Common but Differentiated Responsibilities (CBDR) in the context of the global partnership for development and the need to: maintain the integrity of the FfD3 and of the post-2015 processes while recognizing synergies between them; fully upgrade the Committee of Experts on International Cooperation in Tax Matters; explicitly have a reference to people living under foreign occupation; and explicitly address that climate financing is new and cannot be counted as official development assistance (ODA).

The EU said the value and strength of the AAAA is its comprehensiveness, and that the AAAA “brought us a lot closer to agreement” in the post-2015 negotiations. Regarding the Secretariat’s earlier remark on resources induced by the implementation of the AAAA, he suggested considering the redeployment of existing resources. Saint Lucia, for the Caribbean Community (CARICOM), said the post-2015 development agenda, including the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), can be met within the framework of a revitalized global partnership and supported by actions as outlined in the AAAA, and consideration should be given to the needs of small island developing States (SIDS) as defined in the SAMOA Pathway, and to the unsustainable level of debt of CARICOM countries.

Japan called for considering the follow-up mechanism of the AAAA in the post-2015 development agenda, and remarked that budgetary aspects related to implementing the AAAA are important and should be given due attention. Brazil observed that the agreement on a Technology Facilitation Mechanism (TFM) in the AAAA constitutes an example of constructive North-South dialogue. Ecuador expressed concern that 17 paragraphs on which his country explained its national position during the Conference have been recorded as reservations, and noted that reservations are different than expression of national positions (EOPs). He reiterated Ecuador’s reservations, however, on paragraphs 31 (fossil fuel subsidies) and 113 (multilateral financial, investment, trade, and development policy and environment institutions and platforms).

Ethiopia said the spirit of a win-win approach prevailed for the AAAA’s adoption and asked delegates to use the same spirit in the post-2015 negotiations. [UNGA President’s Letter on Plenary] [Draft Resolution and Outcome Document of the Third International Conference on Financing for Development – Addis Ababa Action Agenda] [UNGA President’s Statement] [UN Secretary-General’s Statement] [FfD3 Conference Website] [IISD RS Story on AAAA Adoption] [UN Press Release] [IISD RS Sources]