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Norway launches new strategy for global food security

On November 29, 2022, the Norwegian government presented its new strategy for food security: 'Gathering power against famine - a policy for increasing self-sufficiency.'

The plan prioritized strengthening Norwegian efforts on food security in low- and middle-income countries. More concretely, the plan supports local and regional, small-scale producers of food, local job creation in the value chains, and access to nutritious food. 

The strategy was organized into four priority areas: 

  • Improving productivity, including reduced production losses, for small-scale producers of food;
  • Developing robust local value chains and markets that strengthen the position of small-scale producers of food and small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs);
  • Increasing and improving access to a healthy and safe variety of foods; and
  • Addressing the root causes of food insecurity and building partner countries' capacity to respond to natural and social barriers to food security.

Norway also set out intermediate objectives for achieving the higher-level goals: 

  • Identify and build relevant partnerships;
  • Support national plans and strategies for food security, sustainable development, and development of agriculture, fisheries and farming;
  • Work to ensure harmony between different thematic initiatives; 
  • Facilitate increased cooperation with civil society and the private sector; and
  • Conduct follow-up research and impact evaluation to ensure positive, concrete results.

The strategy will inform Norwegian efforts through the UN, development banks, and global funds, and will be used as a basis for bilateral commitments on food security in partner countries.

In particular, Norway prioritized cooperation with Ghana, Malawi, Mozambique, South Sudan, and Tanzania. The countries were selected based on the magnitude of their food security challenges and existing Norwegian development infrastructure in these states.

Norway's new agenda on food security also set out key partners for future collaboration, including:

  • Civil society organizations that work directly with food producers;
  • Farmers' and fishermen's organizations that provide services to producers;
  • Private companies working with farmers provide inputs or refine products; and
  • Multilateral partners, including the UN, development banks, the Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO), the International Fund for Agricultural Development (IFAD), the World Food Programme (WFP), the World Health Organization (WHO), the United Nations Development Fund (UNDP), the United Nations Children's Fund (UNICEF), the International Development Association (IDA), the Green Climate Fund (GCF), the Global Program for Agriculture and Food Security under the World Bank (GAFSP), and the Global Environment Facility (GEF).

The strategy also prioritized continued support for knowledge development, particularly at universities, research institutions in partner countries, and through the international consortium for agricultural research (CGIAR).

Ministry of Foreign Affairs - Press release (in Norwegian)

Strategy (2022) - Ministry of Foreign Affairs (in Norwegian)

Bistandsaktuelt - News article (in Norwegian) 

Norwegian delegation visits Kenya; highlights need for food security, climate cooperation

During the week of November 24, 2022, a Norwegian delegation led by Minister of International Development Anne Beathe Tvinnereim, Crown Prince Håkon, and Innovation Norway visited Kenya, together with a Swedish delegation led by Crown Princess Victoria. 

The trip aimed to understand how Norwegian and Swedish businesses can contribute to the fight against hunger, drought, and climate change in Kenya and the Horn of Africa. 

A joint Norwegian-Swedish business delegation consisting of over 250 companies accompanied the Crown prince and Crown Princess. During the trip, Tvinnereim emphasized the urgency of accelerating the green shift in the eastern part of Africa while ensuring access to food, energy, and jobs at the same time. 

In particular, the delegation focused on opportunities for cooperation with Kenya's government and businesses on renewable energy and sustainable agriculture technologies.

Press release – Minister of International Development (in Norwegian) 

Norwegian negotiators, CSOs share mixed reactions to COP27 agreement

On November 20, 2022, Minister of Climate and Environment Espen Barth Eide stated that he was pleased with the outcomes of COP27, the UN Conference of the Parties (COP).

Barth Eide, who took part in the final discussions on COP 27, said that there was a need for a positive outcome from the climate summit. The aim of the agreement was to strengthen and carry forward the positive results from Glasgow. 

Barth Eide says that the two most important outcomes from the COP agreement were world leaders' commitment to limit global temperature rise to 1.5 degrees Celsius above pre-industrial levels and the creation of a specific fund for loss and damage. 

While negotiators agreed to establish a fund for loss and damage, sources of funding will continue to be discussed. For Norway, it was important to ensure that the new fund will consist of funding from a wide range of sources (both private and public sources) and that both traditional inland and emerging states will contribute. 

However, Barth Eide said Norway would have liked to see greater progress on concrete measures for emission reductions before 2025. Neither the proposal to phase out fossil energy sources without carbon capture and storage, nor a proposal that emissions should reach a peak in 2025, received sufficient support from other countries. 

Several Norwegian environmental organizations expressed their disappointment with the COP 27 agreement, especially the lack of real progress on emissions reduction strategies. The Norwegian Forum for Development and Environment (ForUM), which was present at COP, was very critical of countries' failure to agree on stronger wording to cut emissions. Another environmental organization, Bellona, stated that the new climate agreement was a necessary step, but criticized the agreement's vagueness on many topics. 

Press release – Ministry of Foreign Affairs (in Norwegian)

News article – Bistandsaktuelt (in Norwegian)

News article – E24 (in Norwegian) 
 

COP27 draft decision indicates progress, conflict on climate action priorities

COP27, the UN Conference of the Parties (COP), completed its last thematic day on November 17, 2022, focusing on ‘solutions.’ As the conference entered the penultimate day of negotiations, the release of a draft agreement emphasized both progress to date and the enormity of the task ahead. 

Key Statements & Discussions 

Keeping with the day’s theme of actionable commitments to decarbonization and reducing global warming, Australia’s bid to host COP31 was met with mixed reception from world leaders. While many applauded the new government’s renewed commitment to climate change, they also suggested that the government would need to stop investing in fossil fuels before a bid would be approved. 

As COP27 negotiations neared their scheduled end, a group of representatives from Canada, the EU, and the UK emphasized the need for concrete conference outcomes to the Egyptian Presidency. Delegates stressed that COP27 negotiations would need to produce coherent, actionable outcomes to be perceived as successful, and highlighted a variety of flaws and conflicts remaining in the current draft. 

The draft decision in question was 20 pages long as of Thursday, containing many placeholders as negotiations on key issues continued. Tracking from Carbon Brief indicated that the length of the document, as well as the number of remaining issues, would lead to negotiations continuing beyond COP27’s scheduled end on November 18, 2022. While the G20’s support for the 1.5 degree Celsius target somewhat preempted negotiations on the topic at COP, there has been no resolution on major points such as funding for loss and damage and reforming climate finance architecture. 

Key financial commitments 

Pledges on ‘Solutions’ day primarily focused on sustainable transportation. The UK COP26 Presidency announced several new initiatives aimed at increasing the production and use of zero-emissions vehicles (ZEV), including a ‘Global Commitment,’ backed by the US, Germany, Japan, the Netherlands, South Korea, Sweden, and the UK, which will provide finance for ZEV transitions in low- and middle-income countries. Specific details on funding flows and amounts were not provided. 

Several other pledges from earlier in COP27 were also highlighted, including: 

  • €1 billion (US$1 billion) from the EU, France, Germany, the Netherlands, and Denmark to support initiatives led by the African Union (AU) focusing on climate risk data, early warning systems, mobilizing finance, and disaster risk finance on November 16, 2022; 
  • €60 million (US$62 million) from the EU to support loss and damages on November 16, 2022; 
  • €40 million (US$41 million) from Germany to support the African Development Bank’s (AfDB) Climate Action Window on November 16, 2022; 
  • US$20 million for the World Food Program (WFP) through the World Bank from Germany and the UK on November 16, 2022; and 
  • NOK 100 million (US$10 million) from Norway to support the  UN’s International Fund for Agricultural Development (IFAD), on November 9, 2022. 

Agenda 

COP27 is scheduled to conclude on Friday, November 18, 2022, but negotiations may extend into the following week.  

News article – The Guardian 

News article – Reuters 

News article – The Guardian 

Press release – GOV.UK 

Transcript – European Commission 

News article – African Development Bank Group 

News article – Reliefweb 

News article – Reliefweb 

Donor countries, philanthropies pledge US$135 million for Global Fertilizer Challenge

At a COP27 panel on November 12, 2022, Ambassador Marcel Beukeboom announced that the Netherlands, the US, European Commission, Norway, and Germany will provide a total of US$135 million in support of US President Joe Biden’s Global Fertilizer Challenge to combat global fertilizer shortages and food insecurity.

The pledge exceeded Biden’s goal of raising US$100 million for the initiative.

Biden set the challenge goal on June 17, 2022 to address global fertilizer shortages in low- and middle-income countries, caused in part by Russia’s invasion of Ukraine. The EU and countries’ joint pledge totaled US$109 million. An additional US$5 million was committed by the Foundation for Food & Agricultural Research (FFAR), and another US$22 million was offered by a group of philanthropic funders and investors, which will more broadly address fertilizer’s role in climate, food security, and energy crises.

Press release - ReliefWeb

Tweet – Dutch Ministry of Foreign Affairs

Norway pledges US$51 million to clean energy transition initiatives

On November 10, 2022, Norway announced two pledges totaling NOK500 million (US$51 million) to support clean energy initiatives through the Norwegian Agency for Development Cooperation (Norad).

In particular, Norway pledged NOK300 million (US$30 million) in funding to clean energy projects through an additional grant from Norad to the Sustainable Energy Fund for Africa (Sefa). Specific partner countries were not mentioned.  

The second pledge was for NOK200 million (US$20 million) from 2022-2028 to the Beyond the Grid Fund for Africa. The pledge will support projects with the goal of helping over 6 million people gain access to electricity in Burkina Faso, Congo, Liberia, Mozambique, Uganda, and Zambia. 

The Beyond the Grid Fund was established by the Nordic Green Bank (Nefco). Nefco is an international financial institution (IFI) financing initial scale-up of Nordic green solutions on international markets. As a special fund under Nefco, the Beyond the Grid fund will offer tailored financing solutions to green energy companies. 

Press release – Ministry of Foreign Affairs (in Norwegian)

Press release  Ministry of Foreign Affairs (in Norwegian)

Norway pledges US$10 million for Enhanced Adaptation for Smallholder Agriculture Programme

On November 9, 2022, at COP27, the UN Conference of the Parties (COP), Minister of International Development Anne Beathe Tvinnereim and IFAD President Alvaro Lario signed an agreement on increased support from Norway for climate change adaptation and mitigation in agriculture. 

More specifically, Norway pledged NOK100 million (US$10 million) to help low-income countries to improve their adaptive capacity to climate change and reduce poverty. The funding was channeled through the Enhanced Adaptation for Smallholder Agriculture Programme (ASAP+), an initiative under IFAD. ASAP+ promotes food production, transport, and storage adapted to a more challenging climate. The program is also focused on women and young people. 

Tvinnereim called IFAD is an important partner in efforts to increase global food security. She also shared that Norway's plans to launch a new strategy to support climate-resilient small-scale food production in low-income countries.

Press release - Ministry of Foreign Affairs

News article - Bistandsaktuelt (in Norwegian)

Norway submits new emissions target, outlines priorities for COP27

On November 3, 2022, Norway submitted an updated climate target to the UN, committing to reduce emissions by at least 55% by 2030, compared to the 1990 level. 

In addition to the new climate target, Anne Beathe Tvinnereim, Minister of International Development, highlighted the importance of increasing global access to renewable energy solutions. In response to calls from low-income countries for assistance in the face of climate change, Tvinnereim pledged that Norway will at least triple funding for adaptation measures, though did not specify the timeline or base level of funding for the increase.

As such, during COP27, the UN Conference of the Parties (COP) Norway will enter into agreements to provide funding for food security, renewable energy, and meteorological services to better equip vulnerable countries to face climate change. 

The Norwegian delegation to COP27 will be led by the Minister for Climate and Environment, Espen Barth Eide. Prime Minister Jonas Gahr Støre will be present during the high-level meetings at the beginning of week. Minister of International Development, Anne Beathe Tvinnereim will also attend the summit.

The Office of the Prime Minister stated that Norway’s priority during COP27 is ensuring that the 1.5-degree target is kept within reach. A successful COP will also result in increased progress on emission reduction, climate adaptation, and financing measures to prevent and address loss and damage due to climate change. 

Press release - Office of the Prime Minister

News article - Ministry of Climate and Environment (in Norwegian) 

Norway to collaborate with FAO on emergency response initiatives

According to an October 31, 2022, press release from the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Norway has entered into an agreement with the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO) to develop emergency rapid response capacities.

The agreement was signed on October 24, 2022. The FAO is one of Norway’s most important partners in the effort to promote long-term food security and agricultural production globally. In the agreement, Norway increased its funding to the Special Fund for Emergency and Rehabilitation Activities (SFERA) by an additional NOK100 million (US$9.7 million). The funding will support initiatives responding to threats to food security and agriculture.

According to Minister of International Development Anne Beathe Tvinnereim, Norway considers it important to provide flexible funding, given the unpredictability of emergency situations. Tvinnereim expressed hope that such funding will ease the process of rebuilding after crisis events.

Tvinnereim said the funding will prioritize the poorest countries in Africa, though the minister did not name specific partner countries. Potential initiatives might use the funds to provide local producers with seed supplies or fertilizer in time for the planting season. 

Press release - Ministry of Foreign Affairs 

Norwegian government gives US$5 million to global health fundraiser

On October 24, 2022, the Norwegian government contributed NOK50 million (US$5 million) to the NRK Telethon campaign, the proceeds of which will support the Drugs for Neglected Diseases Initiative (DNDi). 

The NRK Telethon is the largest information campaign and fundraising event in Norway. Every autumn, the nationwide charity campaign raises money for a chosen cause. This year's charities include Doctors Without Borders and the DNDi, which works to research and develop medicines for neglected diseases.

The support from the government will especially target the prevention of outbreaks in the Central African Republic, Bangladesh, Sierra Leone, and Congo.

Minister of International Development Anne Beathe Tvinnereim highlighted the importance of the campaign in light of the global reach of infectious diseases.

News article - Bistandsaktuelt (in Norwegian)

Oxfam study finds near US$40 billion discrepancy between reported, actual climate finance

An October 2022 Oxfam report found that many high-income countries use dishonest and misleading accounting to inflate – by as much as 225% in 2020 – their climate finance contributions to low-income countries. 

Oxfam estimated that the 'true value' of climate finance provided by donor countries in 2020 fell between US$21 billion and US$24.5 billion, against a reported figure of US$68.3 billion and a pledged amount of US$100 billion.

Oxfam suggested the discrepancy resulted from loans being reported at face value, ignoring repayment, interest, and other factors. Loans currently make up 70% of public climate finance, which exacerbates the debt crisis across low-income countries, which are the least responsible for the climate crisis. 

The report cited donor countries including Australia, Canada, the EU, Germany, Japan, Netherlands, Norway, Spain, Sweden, the US, and others, and called on the countries to use the upcoming COP27 climate talks to urgently commit to scaling up grant-based support for vulnerable countries and reform reporting practices. 

Report - Oxfam Canada

Norway hosts global health symposium

On October 14, 2022, the Norwegian Ministry of Health and Care Services and the Centre for Global Health at the University of Oslo hosted a symposium on priorities and efficiency in global health.

During the symposium, Ingvild Kjerkol, Norwegian Minister of Health and Care Services, mentioned that Norway will present a white paper to the parliament on health security. The white paper will outline strategies for Norway to improve health security and preparedness through national, regional, and global investments.

Kjerkol also highlighted Norway's collaboration with the EU on global health and its desire to be associated on equal terms as other EU member states. The minister also emphasized Norway's active participation in ongoing negotiations with the World Health Organization (WHO) on strengthening global health preparedness.

Symposium attendees also agreed that the COVID-19 pandemic emphasized the failures of the multilateral system, and named three priorities for future global health cooperation:

  • Commitment to transparency in data collection and reporting;
  • Development of short-term action plans to guide cooperation in the first three to four weeks of a health crisis; and
  • Strong attitudes of multilateralism and pluralism to foster innovative discourse and problem-solving.

Press release - Ministry of Health and Care Services (in Norwegian)

Norwegian 2023 budget falls short of 1% ODA/GNI target

On October 6, 2022, the Norwegian government presented its proposed National Budget for 2023. With an overall development budget of NOK43.8 billion (US$4.2 billion), the budget falls short (0.75%) of Norway's 1% ODA/GNI target.

According to the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, the budget proposal for 2023 reflects economic pressures caused by the war in Ukraine. Defending the ODA shortfall, the government cited exceptionally high revenues from oil and gas. However, Anne Beathe Tvinnereim (Minister of International Development) stated that Norway will continue to increase its international development funding in future years to meet its 1% ODA/GNI target.

In order to provide for Ukrainian refugees in Norway, the Government allocated NOK1.6 billion (US$150 million) in the proposed budget for 2023. However, the following budget allocations were reduced:

The budget for regional grants also saw major changes, including the addition of a new regional grant line called 'Ukraine and neighboring countries.' NOK1.6 billion (US$150 million) of in-house refugee expenses will be classified as ODA in 2023. This is an increase of NOK1.1 billion (US$98 million) compared to the balanced budget in 2022, but far lower than the expenses estimated in the revised budget.

In the budget, Asia received an additional NOK34 million (US$3 million), though assistance to specific regions was not specified, and the Latin American region received an additional NOK4 million (US$327,000). The other regional grants received significant cuts: 

  • Grants to partner countries in Africa saw a decrease of NOK212 million (US$19 million), though cuts to specific regions in Africa were not specified;
  • Funding to the Middle East and North Africa decreased by NOK175 million (US$16 million);
  • The budget for Europe and Central Asia decreased by NOK139 million (US$13 million); and
  • Appropriations for Afghanistan decreased by NOK 30 million (US$2.7 million).

The draft budget elicited strong reactions from the Socialist Left, Christian Democratic, and Green parties. The three political parties argued that Norway's extraordinary income during a time when many are facing hardships from war and climate change should result in more funding for development assistance, not a reduction.

Secretary General of Save the Children Birgitte Lange observed that the budget allocation to fighting poverty was historically low in the proposal. Lange argued that the shortfall comprised an act of bad faith, given the government's promises of reaching 1% ODA/GNI in the Hurdal platform. 

Dagfinn Høybråten from Church Aid agreed, predicting that the government's dramatically lowered ambitions will lead other high-income countries to follow suit. 

Press release - Ministry of Foreign Affairs (in Norwegian)

Press release - Ministry of Foreign Affairs (in Norwegian)

News article - Bistandsaktuelt (in Norwegian)

News article - Devex 

Record Norwegian oil revenues threaten 1% ODA/GNI target

According to the Norwegian news outlet Vårt Land, the government's proposal for the state budget for 2023 fails to meet the country's 1% ODA/GNI target.

The news outlet stated that the main reason for the failure to reach the target is the large growth in GNI for 2022. Russia's war against Ukraine and the suspension of gas exports to Europe led to drastically increased energy prices, resulting in record Norwegian revenues from oil and gas exports and a sharp rise in GNI.
 
Vårt Land did not report on exact allocations to international development or other budget lines. However, Minister of International Development, Anne Beathe Tvinnereim did state that food security would be prioritized with extra funding. 
 
The current government is a minority government, dependent on support from the Socialist Left Party to get the State Budget for 2023 approved. The international development budget is expected to become a source of tension during budget negotiations. According to Vårt Land, the Socialist Left Party will defend current levels of development funding. However, they will not prioritize international development over other important issues.
  
The Christian Democrats and the Green Party were likewise disappointed in the government's proposal that Norway should not meet its 1% ODA/GNI target in the 2023 budget. Kjell Ingolf Ropstad, leader of the Christian Democrats, expressed understanding that the budget must be tightened due to the current economic situation, but argued that the international development budget should be saved. 
 
Green Party representative Lan Marie Berg agreed with Ropstad, stating that she expected the government to maintain the funding target, provide emergency funding against hunger and allocate more of the extraordinary income from the oil fund to climate adaptation in low-income countries. According to Berg, though Europe is facing a challenging situation, the world's poorest countries are hit even harder, due to food shortages and the effects of climate change.

News article - Vårt Land (in Norwegian)

News article - Vårt Land (in Norwegian)

News article - Vårt Land (in Norwegian)


 

Announcement of budget cuts by Norway's Støre stokes concern for development agenda

On September 30, 2022, Prime Minister Jonas Gahr Støre warned that there will be disappointments in the 2023 state budget due to economic circumstances, raising anxieties regarding the consequences for development initiatives.

While CSOs agree that the Government is under pressure, civil society leaders in Norway expressed concern about the impact of funding cuts on poverty reduction, education, and climate change agendas.

The other major fear is that Norway would set a standard for reducing funding to partner countries. Director of the United Nations Development Program (UNDP) Oslo Governance Centre, Arvinn Gadgil, emphasized that Norway has a visible role in international development, and worried that cuts to Norway's development budget would encourage other countries to follow suit.

In advance of the budget proposal on October 6, 2022, civil society leaders expressed hopes that Norway will retain its 1% ODA/GNI target, honor announced support for food security and climate finance, and avoid cuts in support for vaccine distribution and assistance to refugees and migrants.

News article - Bistandsaktuelt (in Norwegian)

Norway allocates US$660 million of pledged assistance to Ukraine

In July 2022, Prime Minister Jonas Gahr Støre announced that Norway would give an additional NOK10 billion (US$944 million) in funding to Ukraine in 2022 and 2023.

In a joint proposal sent to the Parliament on September 30, 2022, the government proposed that NOK4 billion (US$377mill) of the NOK 10 billion (US$944 million) be allocated in 2022 as:

  • NOK2 billion (US$188 million) for gas purchase through the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD);
  • NOK1 billion (US$94 million) for humanitarian efforts, primarily through established humanitarian organizations; and
  • NOK1 billion (US$94million) to Ukraine to ensure the operation of public services, such as schools, hospitals, and other public services, through the World Bank.

In the proposal, the government also suggested allocating NOK3 billion (US$283 million) for increased military support. This was included in the total of NOK10 billion that the government pledged for 2022 - 2023.

Norway has contributed more than NOK2 billion (US$188 million) in support to Ukraine and neighboring countries in 2022, including approximately NOK1.7 billion (US$160 million) in humanitarian aid, NOK300 million (US$28 million) in operating support to Ukraine through the World Bank, NOK120 million (US$11 million) through the EEA funds for Ukrainian refugees in the recipient countries (mainly Poland and Romania), NOK50 million (US$5 million) for food security through the EBRD (European Bank for Reconstruction and Development) and NOK50 million (US$5 million) to Moldova through the World Bank.

Press release - Ministry of Foreign Affairs (in Norwegian)

Press release - Ministry of Finance (in Norwegian)

Norway to contribute US$9 million for food security to African Development Bank

At the Nordic-African Business Summit on September 29, 2022, Minister of International Development, Anne Beathe Tvinnereim announced that Norway will contribute NOK100 million (US$9 million) to the African Development Bank (AfDB).

The Summit was organized by the Norwegian-African Business Association (NABA) in partnership with Norfund – the government’s investment fund, and the Norwegian Ministry of Foreign Affairs. 

In response to food crises caused by the war in Ukraine and climate change, the AfDB established the 'African Emergency Food Production Facility.' This crisis response initiative will contribute support to small-scale farmers, including knowledge-sharing, fertilizer, and seeds. In addition, the facility will help with financing and credit guarantees. Altogether, the facility aims to provide comprehensive support to smallholder farmers as they address the food shortfall.
 
According to Tvinnereim, Norway already supports the AfDB with multi-year core contributions. She argues that the bank is one of the most important channels for Norwegian long-term funding to partner countries in Africa.
 
The increased funding comes ahead of an updated strategy on food security in Norwegian development policy, which the Ministry is currently working on. The aim of the strategy is to contribute to increased productivity in food-producing sectors in low-income countries. With the strategy, Norway wants to support small-scale food producers, their value chains, and climate-resilient food production.

Press release - Ministry of International Development (in Norwegian)

News article - Bistandsaktuelt (In Norwegian)

Oxfam report highlights shortcomings of climate ODA to West Africa

A September 2022 Oxfam Canada report showed that donor countries have mobilized only 7% of the estimated US$198.9 billion that West African countries need by 2030 to cope with the climate crisis.

Furthermore, donors have fallen far short of repeated promises to mobilize US$100 billion a year for climate action in low- and middle-income countries.

The new report, Climate Finance in West Africa, also found that 62% of the US$11.7 billion declared by donors between 2013 and 2019 took the form of loans. The report warned against the use of loans, as their repayment with interest could aggravate debt crises in many West African countries.

As a result of the report's findings, Oxfam called on donor countries, including the EU, France, US, Canada, Germany, Norway, Sweden, Spain, Japan, Italy, the Netherlands, among others, to urgently increase their climate financing and honor their promises, in addition to calling for funds to be distributed as grants rather than loans.

Report - Oxfam Canada

Norway presents development priorities at UNGA

Over the week of September 19, 2022, Norway’s delegation to the 77th session of the UN General Assembly (UNGA 77) was led by Prime Minister Jonas Gahr Støre.

Minister of Foreign Affairs Anniken Huitfeldt, Minister of International Development Anne Beathe Tvinnereim, Minister of Climate and Environment Espen Barth Eide and representatives from the Parliament attended together with Støre.

In advance of the high-level week in New York, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs presented Norway`s main priorities for UNGA 77, including:

  1. Support for Norway’s efforts as an elected member of the UN Security Council and promote Norway’s broad priorities in the UN;
  2. Promoting binding international cooperation and respect for international law and safeguarding the multilateral system;
  3. Leading efforts to promote disarmament;
  4. Strengthening the UN’s capacity to prevent and resolve conflicts;
  5. Strengthening human rights and the international legal order;
  6. Strengthening the UN’s capacity to prevent and respond to humanitarian crises and promoting international cooperation on refugees and migrants; and
  7. Promoting the implementation of the 2030 Agenda, with particular emphasis on climate and environmental issues, energy, food security, gender equality, health, the oceans, and reducing inequalities.

The Prime Minister and the rest of the Norwegian delegation were very active during UNGA 77. Norway`s participation can be summed up in the following activities:

Keynote speech during the General Assembly
During the General Assembly, the Prime Minister delivered Norway's keynote speech and emphasized that the Russian war in Ukraine is a direct violation of the UN Charter and the global legal order, and indicating that the responsibility for stopping the war lay with Russia.  At the same time, he pointed out the war's impact on existing global crises, such as high energy prices, food shortages, and development in low-income countries. Støre called for global unity to protect the multilateral system.

Meeting in the UN Security Council
Støre also participated in a separate meeting, led by France in the UN Security Council, on the war in Ukraine. Norway and other members of the council agreed that Russia's warfare is a violation of humanitarian law and human rights.

Ad-Hoc Liaison Committee (AHLC) meeting
Anniken Huitfeldt, Minister of Foreign Affairs, chaired the Ad-Hoc Liaison Committee (AHLC) meeting during UNGA. The aim of the meeting was to mobilize support for the United Nations Organization for Palestine Refugees (UNWRA), which is facing severe challenges related to its budget.

Meeting about the situation in Sahel 
Anne Beathe Tvinnereim, Minister of International Development attended a high-level meeting on the situation in Sahel, led by the UN Secretary-General and the Chairperson of the African Union. The purpose of the meeting was to launch a high-level panel for security, development and good governance in Sahel.

The High Ambition Coalition (HAC) for Nature and People
More than 100 countries committed to protecting at least 30 percent of the earth's land and seas by 2030. Espen Barth Eide, Minister for Climate and Environment attended the first steering committee meeting of the High Ambition Coalition (HAC) for Nature and People. This is an intergovernmental group championing a global deal for nature and people that can halt the accelerating loss of species, and protect vital ecosystems that are the source of our economic security.

Article - Ministry of Foreign Affairs

Press release - Ministry of Foreign Affairs (in Norwegian)

Norway's Tvinnereim speaks at Transforming Education Summit

On September 17, 2022, Norwegian Minister of International Development Anne Beathe Tvinnereim, spoke at the 'Mechanisms for Capacity Building, Policy Support and International Collaboration' roundtable at the Transforming Education Summit.

In her statement, Tvinnereim highlighted the role of education in achieving gender equality, poverty reduction, and climate adaptation, and called for more ambitious planning and commitment to reverse the learning deficits caused by the COVID-19 pandemic. 

Tvinnereim named four priorities for policy makers, namely:

  1. Ensuring that all children, especially girls, have access to quality education;
  2. Increasing the resilience of schools to increasingly frequent extreme weather events, which disrupt the education of millions of children every year;
  3. Strengthening the humanitarian-development nexus and coordination of short-term humanitarian assistance and long-term development efforts; and
  4. Full implementation of the Safe Schools Declaration and UN Security Council resolution 2601.

Norway will be a co-convener of the Education Cannot Wait’s High-level Financing Conference in February 2023.

Speech - Ministry of Foreign Affairs

News article - UN Association of Norway (in Norwegian)