25 May 2017
Governments Agree on FfD Forum Outcome
UN Photo/Manuel Elías
story highlights

Governments agreed on the conclusions and recommendations of the second FFD Forum.

The FfD Forum is convening in New York, US, from 22-25 May 2017.

This year's outcome tackles substantive issues, including the cross-cutting topics of climate change, gender equality, infrastructure and social protection.

19 May 2017: Governments agreed on the conclusions and recommendations of the UN Economic and Social Council’s (ECOSOC) second Forum on Financing for Development Follow-up (FfD Forum), which were subsequently adopted during the Forum. Unlike the conclusions and recommendations of the first FfD Forum, which were short and strictly procedural, this year’s outcome tackles substantive issues.The FfD Forum is convening in New York, US, from 22-25 May 2017. The Forum is mandated by the Addis Ababa Action Agenda (AAAA) to produce intergovernmentally agreed conclusions and recommendations, which feed into the UN High-level Political Forum on Sustainable Development’s (HLPF) follow-up and review of the implementation of the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development. Negotiations on the outcome took place in the lead up to the Forum itself.

The text’s preamble notes that governments devote themselves collectively to the pursuit of global development and of “win-win” cooperation, and encourages both accelerating national efforts and strengthening international cooperation, to support policies and programmes to increase public and private, domestic and international investment in sustainable development, and generate full and productive employment and decent work for all. Following the preamble, attention is given to cross-cutting issues such as gender equality, infrastructure, social protection, and climate change.

On infrastructure, by the text, governments encourage all stakeholders to foster and develop bankable and implementable infrastructure projects in developing countries including through capacity-building. On climate change, governments call for mobilizing further action and support for climate change mitigation and adaptation, taking into account the specific needs and special circumstances of developing countries, especially those particularly vulnerable to the adverse effects of climate change.

On social protection, the draft notes that Member States will expand peer learning and experience-sharing among countries and regions in finding the right financing mixes that match countries’ respective needs, capacities and national circumstances, and encourage support for capacity-building to help countries, according to their needs, to design and implement nationally appropriate social protection systems and measures consistent with national development strategies. They also invite the Inter-Agency Task Force (IATF), as part of its 2018 report and in consultation with the Social Protection Inter-Agency Cooperation Board, to prepare an inventory of domestic and international financial instruments and funding modalities, and existing quick-disbursing international facilities and the requirements for accessing them, to be discussed at the 2018 session of the FfD Forum.

Following the ‘Cross-cutting issues’ section, the text addresses ‘Domestic public resources,’ inviting the UN Secretary-General to seek more nominations by governments of developing countries for the UN Committee of Experts on International Cooperation in Tax Matters. On illicit financial flows (IFFs), it encourages countries to strengthen existing institutions and law enforcement in both source and destination countries.

In the ‘Domestic and international private business and finance,’ the text encourages multilateral development banks (MDBs) and development finance institutions to link their enabling environment work with private sector investment to ensure that reforms address investor needs. It also encourages efforts by the private sector to better align their internal incentives with long-term investment and with the 2030 Agenda, including through UN system initiatives. In this regard, the text notes that the IATF has begun work to map the incentive structures of different actors in the financial system, as part of its 2018 report. On foreign direct investment (FDI), the draft encourages an increase in volume and quality, particularly alignment with the SDGs, as well as its diversification and long-term nature.

On ‘International development cooperation,’ by the text, Member States call on official development assistance (ODA) providers to fulfill their respective commitments, including the commitment by many developed countries to achieve the national target of 0.7% of gross national income (GNI). They also encourage ODA providers to consider setting a target to provide at least 0.2% ODA/GNI to LDCs, while acknowledging that ODA and other forms of concessional finance are still important for many MICs. On concessional finance, the draft encourages shareholders in MDBs to develop graduation policies that are sequenced, phased and gradual. It also reaffirms that South-South cooperation is an important element of international cooperation for development as a complement to, not a substitute for, North-South cooperation.

On ‘International trade as an engine for development,’ by the draft text, governments will promote policies that encourage access by micro, small and medium-sized enterprises (MSMEs) to adequate and affordable trade finance at all levels. They also welcome increasing aid-for-trade aimed at value addition and economic diversification, and note the importance of regional aid-for-trade in supporting faster transit of goods at border crossings and integration into value chains.

On ‘Addressing systemic issues,’ Member States recommit to broadening and strengthening the voice and participation of developing countries in international economic decision-making and norm-setting and global economic governance. They invite the Basel Committee on Banking Supervision and other main international regulatory standard-setting bodies, including the Financial Stability Board, to continue their efforts in this regard.

On ‘Science, technology, innovation and capacity-building,’ the draft notes the importance of transfer of technology on mutually agreed terms. Governments encourage spending on research and development to remain stable and long-term oriented. At the same time, they intend to use a variety of tools to incentivize greater private investment and innovation, while welcoming the collaboration between Member States and all other stakeholders, such as civil society, private sector, academia, scientific community, foundations and philanthropic entities.

The draft further encourages developed and developing country partners, as well as international organizations, foundations and the private sector, to provide financial and technical assistance to the LDCs Technology Bank to ensure its effective operation. [FfD Forum Draft Conclusions and Recommendations] [FfD Forum Website] [SDG Knowledge Hub Story on Intergovernmental Negotiations on the Draft]

related events

related posts