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Finance in Common Summit mobilizes 500 development banks to address climate change, promotes sustainable development

Following the inaugural Finance in Common Summit (FiCS), held in 2020 during the Paris Peace Forum, more than 500 public development banks will meet for a second time from October 19-20, 2021, to address climate change and sustainable development action.

FiCS, held under the leadership of the Italian G20 presidency, will be hosted by Cassa Depositi e Prestiti (CDP), the Italian National Promotional Institution and Financial Institution for Development Cooperation, in partnership with the International Fund for Agricultural Development (IFAD) and the Finance in Common Coalition.

The event will take place in Rome via face-to-face and digital formats.

Speakers include: the Secretary General of the United Nations, Antonio Guteres; the Secretary General of the OECD, Mathias Cormann; the President of the European Investment Bank, Wermer Hoyer; the managing director of development policy and partnerships of the World Bank, Mari Pangestu; and many others.

Website - Finance in Common

G20 leaders commit to ensuring humanitarian assistance in Afghanistan

At the G20 extraordinary meeting on Afghanistan, the G20 head of states committed to supporting humanitarian assistance in the country, focusing primarily on vulnerable groups, such as women, children, and people with disabilities.

The G20 leaders called upon leaders to find solutions to maintain essential services; in particular, they desire for strengthened education and health sectors. Furthermore, the leaders flagged the importance of a functioning payment system and overall financial stability in the region. The G20 leaders committed to cooperate with international organizations, international financial institutions, including multilateral development banks, and humanitarian actors in the field. The G20 countries invite the World Bank to explore possible ways to redirect support to international agencies for humanitarian efforts.

Finally, the G20 leaders emphasize the importance of ensuring a rapid vaccination campaign and fully administering previously donated vaccines via COVAX and stand ready to provide more.

Chair summary - G20 website

Italy's Draghi calls on leaders to raise US$100.0 billion for climate climate crisis

Italian Prime Minister Mario Draghi attended Youth4Climate: Driving Ambition, the COP26 pre-conference in Milan for youth advocates fighting for climate action. 

The UN Climate Change Conference, COP26, will take place in Glasgow, Scotland from October 31 - November 12, 2021.

In his final speech, Draghi called for a pledge of US$100.0 billion for low- and lower-middle-income countries and climate-vulnerable nations, specifying the need for grants rather than loans to address the ongoing climate crisis. 

Video transcript - Italian Government Website 

Italy will triple COVID-19 vaccine donations by 2021 year-end and establish pandemic preparedness board with G20 presidency

Italian Prime Minister, Mario Draghi, attended the Global COVID-19 Summit and announced that Italy will donate 30 million additional COVID-19 vaccine doses by the end of the year, reaching 45 million donations for 2021.

Furthermore, PM Draghi declared that to prepare for future pandemics, the international community must expand vaccine and medical equipment production capacities, especially in most-vulnerable countries. Italy also supports the European Union's plan to devote 1.0 billion (US$1.2 billion) to develop several regional medical manufacturing hubs on the African continent and foster technology transfers.

Italy intends to establish the Global Health and Finance Board with its G20 Presidency to enhance global cooperation in governance and finance for pandemic prevention, preparedness, and response.

Press release - Italian government website

G20 Agriculture Ministers sign Florence Sustainability Charter to improve food security

The G20 Ministers of Agriculture met in Florence, Italy on September 17-18, 2021, and approved the Florence Sustainability Charter to address food security in the three-dimensional sustainability framework: economic, social, and environmental.

Furthermore, the Ministers reaffirmed their intent to reach zero hunger, which has been severely threatened by ramifications from the COVID-19 pandemic.

The Charter will strengthen cooperation between G20 members and low-income countries on food and agriculture; the agreement allows nations to share knowledge and establish internal production capacities best suited to local environments, contributing to the resilience and further recovery of agriculture in rural communities.

Florence Sustainability Charter - G20

US and EU to reduce methane emissions by one-third by 2030, Biden says

United States President, Joe Biden, held a virtual summit with global leaders to address responses to harmful methane emissions; Biden announced that the US and Europe agreed to cut global methane emissions by one-third by 2030 and similarly urged other nations to join the "global methane pledge.” 

Biden welcomed representatives from the EU, UK, Italy, Germany, Japan, Argentina, Australia, Bangladesh, Indonesia, Russian, Korea, India, Mexico, and the United Nations Secretary-General, to the event. Notably absent were the president of China, although he did send an envoy, and Brazil. 

The meeting precedes the UN's Climate Change Conference, COP26, which will take place in November 2021, in Glasgow, Scotland.

Biden called the reduced methane emissions target “ambitious but realistic” and also pledged that the US will assist lower-income countries in meeting the new target. 

News report - The New York Times

 

G20 Health Ministers commit to vaccinating at least 40% of global population by end of 2021

The G20 Health Ministers met in Rome on September 5-6, 2021, and committed to vaccinating at least 40% of the global population by the year's end.

The Health Ministers' final declaration focuses on the fight against COVID-19 (particularly, the support of global access to vaccination) and the importance of preventing future pandemics, emphasizing the role of the One Health approach that includes animal and planetary health.

Final declaration - G20

Italy will reroute funding from Afghan military to humanitarian assistance

Italian Prime Minister Mario Draghi attended the G7 leaders' meeting on Afghanistan and announced that Italy would redirect resources originally earmarked for Afghan military forces towards humanitarian assistance. Draghi called on the other G7 leaders to do the same and to ensure that international organizations have access to Afghanistan after August 31, 2021, when many foreign military forces are set to be withdrawn from Afghanistan.

Draghi emphasized the pivotal role of G20 in the management of the Afghanistan crisis and called for the involvement of other key players like Russia, China, Saudi Arabia, Turkey, and India.

The Italian presidency of the G20 plans to organize a G20 meeting in Afghanistan in September of 2021.

Speech – Government of Italy

Civil 20 publishes 2021 Policy Pack: “Building a sustainable future for all”

The Civil 20 (C20), the civil society engagement group of the G20, published a policy pack of proposals from the C20’s Working Groups to the G20 leaders. 

This year more than 550 civil society organizations and networks from all over the world joined the Civil 20. The document outlining the international civil society recommendations to the G20 leaders on nine areas: Agenda 2030 and sustainable development; global health; climate biodiversity and ecological transition; lobal citizenship and education; anti-corruption; digitalization; gender equality; labour; and finance.

Policy pack - C20 website

G20 Panel on Financing Global Commons for Pandemic Preparedness and Response calls on G20 to increase funding for global health by US$15.0 billion per year

The G20 High-Level Independent Panel on Financing the Global Commons for Pandemic Preparedness and Response (HLIP) presented its official report, 'A Global Deal for Our Pandemic Age', to the G20 Finance Ministers and Central Bank Governors on July 9, 2021. The Panel called the G20 and international community for a public funding increase in global financing of at least US$15.0 billion per year over the next five years.

The report said that the additional US$15.0 billion per year should include US$10.0 billion annually to a Global Health Threats Fund, which should be established to support investments for pandemic preparedness and response, and US$5.0 billion per year to increase funding to existing global health international institutions, including the World Health Organization (WHO), as well as creating dedicated pandemic preparedness concessional financing windows in the World Bank’s International Development Association (IDA) and Multilateral Development Banks (MDBs).

The Panel also asked to create a new Global Health Threats Board, bringing together finance and health ministers as well as international organizations.

The Panel emphasized the importance of all nations prioritizing and sustaining domestic investments in pandemic preparedness over time.

The G20 will be taking into account the Panel’s recommendations in the lead-up to the G20 Joint Finance and Health Ministers’ Meeting hosted by Italy in October.

Report – G20

Press release G20

G20 foreign affairs and development ministers sign declaration on food security, call for partners to join Italy's Food Coalition

The G20 foreign affairs and development ministers met in Matera, Italy on June 29, 2021, to discuss the fight against COVID-19, speeding up the recovery of the global economy, the global climate change emergency, and food shortages in countries in Africa. The meeting culminated in the 'Matera Declaration on food security, nutrition and food systems. A call to action in the time of the COVID-19 pandemic and beyond'.

The signatories of this Matera declaration "agree to deliver on food security priorities by enhancing efforts in ensuring safe and adequate nutrition for all, ending all forms of malnutrition, preserving agrobiodiversity, as well as relying on science, innovation, advanced business practices and responsible behaviour complementing traditional knowledge, local food culture and best practices to achieve" the targets of the second sustainable development goal (SDG 2), 'Zero Hunger'.

The meeting renewed calls for partners to join the Food Coalition launched by Italy in partnership with Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO). The Food Coalition is a multistakeholder platform that aims to reduce the negative impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic on food security.

Development Ministers Meeting Communiqué - G20

Press release - FAO

With COP26 approaching, Italy to nominate Special Envoy for Climate

At the International Affairs Ministers G20 meeting, the Italian Minister of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation Luigi Di Maio announced that Italy will nominate a Special Envoy for Climate.

The twenty-sixth session of the Conference of the Parties (COP26) to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) will take place in November 2021 in Glasgow, UK, but Italy will host the pre-COP in Milan from September 30 to October 2, 2021.

Press release – Adnkronos

With G7 nations, Japan sets goal to raise US$15 billion deliver financial services to women

The Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA) set a goal to raise US$15.0 billion to deliver finical services to women as part of the 'G7 2X Challenge: Financing for Women' (2X Challenge).

The 2X Challenge was founded by development finance institutions of the G7 nations for women’s economic empowerment. The COVID-19 crisis has worsened the situation for women in emerging economies, and research shows that US$1.00 trillion could be lost from global growth if female workers hit hard by the pandemic do not return to the workforce. Therefore, with G7 nations, Japan and development finance institutions announced the goal of raising an additional US$15.0 billion by the end of 2022.

Press release – Japan International Cooperation Agency

Former Italian Deputy Minister for Foreign Affairs appointed new EU Special Representative for Sahel

The European Council appointed Emanuela Del Re as one of three new European Union Special Representatives (EUSRs), with Del Re's role to be specifically on the Sahel from July 1, 2021 to August 30, 2022.

Del Re served as Italy’s Deputy Minister for Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation from August 2018 to February 2021.  She was elected to the Italian parliament for the first time with the Five Star Movement in March 2018. Del Re is a sociologist and specialized in topics pertaining to migration, refugees, conflict studies, religion, and minority populations.

Press release – European Council website 

At G7 Summit, Canada announces new support to low-income countries for COVID-19 vaccines, climate finance, and education

At the 47th G7 Summit from June 11-13, 2021, Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau announced new financial and resource support to address inequitable access to COVID-19 vaccines, respond to the climate emergency, and support education in low-income countries.  

The resource and financial pledges included:

  • COVID-19 Vaccine Dose Sharing: Canada pledged 100 million doses of the COVID-19 vaccine to be shared as part of the G7 leaders’ new collective commitment to sharing more than two billion doses to the global vaccine effort. Canada is also donating 13 million doses of the vaccine through COVAX, the global vaccine initiative. The vaccine sharing is in addition to Canada’s previous contributions of CA$2.5 billion (US$2.0 billion) in international assistance to the COVID-19 crisis and CA$1.3 billion (US$1.0 billion) contribution to the Access to COVID-19 Tools Accelerator (ACT-A). 
  • International Climate Finance: Canada pledged a doubling of Canada’s previous international climate finance to CA$5.3 billion (US$4.2 billion) over five years—up from CA$2.7 billion (US$2.1 billion) over five years in 2015—which includes increased support for adaptation and biodiversity to support low-income countries in cutting pollution and building climate resilience. Canada also increased its grant contribution of climate financing from 30% to 40%. These new commitments are a result of the G7 leaders’ collective commitment to increase their 2030 targets to cut the G7’s collective emissions by around half compared to 2010.
  • Support for Global Partnership for Education: Canada pledged CA$300 million (US$240 million) over five years to the Global Partnership for Education. This funding will specifically support girls’ education and help strengthen education systems in low-income countries. 

Press release - Prime Minister of Canada

Press release - Prime Minister of Canada

G7 leaders agree to provide one billion vaccine doses to low-income countries; critics say this is far from enough

The leaders attending the UK-hosted G7 Summit on June 11-13, 2021, agreed to provide one billion vaccine doses to low-income countries, with the UK committing to provide 100 million.

The communique commits to sharing at least 870 million doses directly over the next year, but it is not clear whether this is related to surplus doses only.

While the move is welcome, it has been widely criticized by civil society groups and UK opposition parties as falling far short of the mark, as the World Health Organization has estimated that 11 billion doses are needed to end the pandemic. Former UK Prime Minister Gordon Brown, from the UK Labour Party, stated that the Summit was an "unforgivable moral failure". 

News article - Devex

Italy commits US$30 million to Global Partnership for Education

On June 9, 2021, in a webinar organized by Save the Children (Italy), the Italian Vice Minister of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation, Marina Sereni, announced a pledge of €25 million (US$30 million) to the Global Partnership for Education (GPE) financing campaign, 'Raise Your Hand'.

Sereni reaffirmed the Italian priority to invest in education, especially in girls’ education. It means investing in countries' future and peaceful, just, and inclusive societies, she said.

In 2021, Italy has pledged double its previous contribution to GPE from 2018, when Italy pledged €12 million (US$14 million).

Press release - Minister of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation

UK Prime Minister calls on G7 leaders to vaccinate the world by end of 2022

The UK Prime Minister, Boris Johnson, has called for his fellow G7 leaders to commit to ambitious target of vaccinating the world by the end of 2022 at the forthcoming G7 Leaders Summit on June 11-13, 2021 in Cornwall, UK.

Johnson highlighted that in order to achieve this, G7 leaders must commit to stepping up the manufacturing of vaccines, lowering the barriers to distribution especially around costs, and sharing more surplus doses with low-income countries bilaterally and via COVAX.

The UK government is the largest donor to the COVAX initiative and will later this week announce how many surplus vaccines it will share with low-income countries.

The Prime Minister will also call at the G7 Leaders’ Summit for G7 countries to support the new Global Pandemic Radar – a global surveillance system aimed at ensuring early identification of new vaccine-resistant variants to help ensure the efficacy of vaccination programs.

Press release - UK government

 

Canada and G7 leaders must cut carbon emissions more quickly and increase climate finance, says Oxfam Canada

In advance of the 47th G7 Summit commencing on June 11, 2021, Oxfam Canada is calling on Canada and other G7 leaders to take drastic action to cut carbon emissions more quickly and increase climate finance to low-income countries.

Without more ambitious climate action, Oxfam Canada projects that Canada’s economy could shrink by 6.9% annually by 2050, while across G7 nations, climate change could cause economies to contract by an average of 8.5% annually by 2050. The human and economic impact of climate change will likely be even greater for low-income countries.

The G7 is collectively falling short on its longstanding pledge to provide US$100 billion per year to help low-income countries respond to the climate crisis. Oxfam estimates that the G7’s current commitment amounts to only US$36 billion in public climate finance by 2025. 

Canada has yet to announce an increase in its climate finance commitments, and achieving Canada’s fair share would require doubling its current climate finance pledge. As a result, Oxfam Canada is calling on Canada and its G7 partners to make this year a turning point for action against climate change by increasing climate finance.

Op-ed - Oxfam Canada

G7 Health Ministers agree to clinical trials charter, strengthened approach to ONE Health, new incentives for antibiotics creation

The UK-hosted G7 Health Ministers meeting, held in Oxford on June 3-4, 2021, agreed to a set of new measures aimed at curbing future pandemics and tackling antimicrobial resistance.

The G7 health ministers agreed amongst other things to:

  • A new charter that will make it easier to share comparable and high-quality data from vaccine and therapeutic trials to assist with tackling COVID-19 and future pandemics. The charter will also enable more large-scale international trials allowing for drugs to be tested on a more diverse set of participants and it will help to avoid duplication of efforts.
  • Strengthen efforts to work together on One Health intelligence through the production of an interim report at the end of 2021 outlining how the WHO, FAO, OIE, and UNEP can work together to deliver a comprehensive set of data on emerging threats to human, animal, plant and environmental health. 
  • Establish principles to incentivize the creation of, greater access to, and the good governance of new antibiotics in response to the growing threat of antimicrobial resistance.   

The G7 Health Ministers also took the opportunity to take stock of the progress that the G7 countries have made on meeting existing global health commitments. A report produced by the hosts of the G7 called the Carbis Bay Progress report showed that G7 countries have:

  • Worked with organizations and partners to strengthen health systems, with financing for general health rising from 38% in 2015 to 47% in 2019;
  • Funded partners to do more noting for example in the case of Gavi, the Vaccine Alliance that its health system strengthening funding grew from 21% of total spend in 2016 to 31% in 2019;
  • Supported 74 countries to strengthen the International Health Regulations which are rules for identifying a disease outbreak and stopping it from spreading; and
  • Provided support for health workers.

Finally, the UK-hosted G7 Vaccine Confidence Summit resulted in an agreement to pursue a new global campaign to build confidence in vaccines. The campaign will be taken forward by the G7 Vaccine Confidence Working Group which the UK chairs and will encourage engagement of government, NGOs, academia, and the private sector to mobilize their partners.

Press release - UK government on G7 Health Ministers Meeting

Press release - G7 Global Vaccine Confidence Summit

Communique - G7 Health Ministers’ Statement 

Report - Carbis Bay Progress Report