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Germany increases support to Pakistan by US$27 million

In light of the severe consequences of the flooding in Pakistan during the summer of 2022, the German Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development (BMZ) increased its financial support to Pakistan by 26 million (US$27 million).

The finance will support the sustainable reconstruction of infrastructure, including streets, bridges, and water supply. The funding is in addition to commitments of 13 million (US$14 million) made to Pakistan in early September 2022.

Press release – Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development (in German)

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)

Germany to contribute US$1.6 billion annually for biodiversity conservation

On September 21, 2022, at the United Nations General Assembly (UNGA), German Chancellor Olaf Scholz announced that Germany will double its funding for biodiversity conservation to €1.5 billion (US$1.6 billion) annually until 2025, relative to average investment between 2017 and 2021.

This is in line with Germany’s ambition to increase its international climate finance to at least €6.0 billion (US$6.3 billion) annually until 2025. The pledge was announced at the UNGA event “Countdown to Convention on Biological Diversity  – Conference of the Parties (CBD COP15): Landmark Leaders Event for a Nature Positive World”. CBD COP15 will take place in December 2o22 in Montreal and aims to conclude with a global agreement on the worldwide protection of nature and the renaturation of ecosystems.

Press release – Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development (in German)

News article – The Nature Conservancy

Canada announces US$9 million development assistance to Philippines

On September 20, 2022, Canada announced CA$12 million (US$9 million) in development assistance to three projects in the Philippines between 2022 and 2027.

In greater detail, the assistance will include:

  • CA$5 million (US$4 million) for the Accelerating Green and Climate Finance in the Philippines: UN Development Programme from 2022 - 2027;
  • CA$3 million (US$2 million) to the Empowering Women for Sustainable Peace in the Bangsamoro Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao: UN Women and UN Development Programme from 2022 - 2026; and
  • CA$5 million (US$4 million) to the World Bank Group's Bangsamoro Normalization Trust Fund from 2022 - 2026 which focuses on community revitalization.

Press release - Global Affairs Canada


 

Italy and Caribbean Development Bank sign US$53 million agreement to support sustainable development

On September 19, 2022, during the 77th United Nations General Assembly (UNGA), Italy and the Caribbean Development Bank (CDB) reached an agreement to provide US$50 million in ODA credits to support sustainable development projects in Caribbean countries.

Specifically, the 'Programme supporting sustainable development projects in Caribbean Community countries' will provide US$50 million in ODA credits and a US$3 million donation from the Italian Agency for Development Cooperation (AICS) to Caribbean Community partner countries including Belize, Dominica, Jamaica, Grenada, Guyana, Saint Lucia, Saint Vincent and the Grenadines, and Suriname.

The resources will be allocated by Cassa Depositi e Prestiti and will support a wide range of development projects dealing with climate change and infrastructure in the following sectors: agriculture, energy, management of coastal zones and water resources, transport, social housing, and healthcare.

Press release - Ministry of Foreign Affairs

Australia hosts UN conference on regional disaster risk reduction

In partnership with the United Nations Office for Disaster Risk Reduction, Australia will host the 2022 Asia-Pacific Ministerial Conference on Disaster Risk Reduction from September 19 - 22, 2022.

Australian Minister for Emergency Management Murray Watt said the four-day event would involve the private sector, local communities, academia, civil society, and governments to discuss building disaster resistance and mitigating the effect of future disasters. The minister highlighted the necessity of efforts to increase resilience to climate hazards, citing the frequency of disasters in the Asia-Pacific region.

News article – The Mandarin

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)

MEPs urge EU to strengthen support for global climate adaptation

Ahead of the September 2022 UN General Assembly (UNGA), Members of European Parliament (MEPs) passed a non-binding resolution calling for the EU to increase its efforts to fight climate change, with a focus on global climate adaptation financing goals.

MEPs noted the disproportionate impact of droughts and floods on individuals living in lower-income countries, particularly Indigenous and low-income communities. Motivated by extreme weather events on the European continent leading up to 2022, MEPs called on the EU to increase funding for climate mitigation and adaptation efforts worldwide. The resolution likewise urged the EU to strengthen its commitment to shoring up global resilience through reducing vulnerability to climate change and supporting disaster risk reduction projects.

Resolution - European Parliament

Norway allocates US$4 million to seed diversity fund

On September 16, 2022, Norway announced it will allocate NOK40 million (US$4 million) to the Benefit-sharing Fund, which was established by the International Treaty’s Governing Body and managed by the Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO). 

The funding from Norway will especially target projects strengthening farmers' access to a variety of crops and the development of robust and nutritious crops. The donation was announced in the leadup to the meeting of International Plant Treaty Members in India from September 19 - 24, 2022.

The Norwegian Minister of International Development, Anne Beathe Tvinnereim, said that the cultivation of nutritious crops such as millet, chickpeas, and sorghum will be important in shoring up global food production in the face of climate change. Tvinnereim also noted the importance of cultivating varieties of corn, that are adapted to local conditions. 

The Benefit-sharing Fund is part of the international collaboration to manage the diversity of the world's cultivated plants. Norwegian Minister of Food and Agriculture Sandra Borch said the increased Norwegian support will give new energy to international cooperation efforts to preserve seed diversity. The funding will also help develop local value chains by empowering farmers to make informed decisions on the varieties of crops they grow.

Press release - Ministry of Foreign Affairs (in Norwegian)

Italian NGO network publishes development priorities ahead of September elections

CINI, a network of seven international NGOs based in Italy, issued a joint statement on September 14, 2022, urging the political parties to prioritize the following development cooperation objectives ahead of the September 25, 2022, election:

  1. Increasing the resources allocated to Italy’s development cooperation, meeting the international 0.7% GNI/ODA target by 2030, reaching 0.5% by 2027, and prioritizing support to low- and middle-income countries while finding alternative funding sources for migration and asylum policies;
  2. Boosting the quality of Italy’s development cooperation through better planning, monitoring, and policy coherence;
  3. Mainstreaming gender equality across Italy’s humanitarian and development cooperation efforts, and further integrating gender equity into Italy’s foreign policy;
  4. Investing in preventive mechanisms and tools to build local capacity for countering future crises through investment in health systems, education programs, and social protection of the most vulnerable groups;
  5. Promoting a new external migration policy based on human rights protection and removing funding for repatriation programs from the budget, which received US$10 million in 2022; and 
  6. Supporting the fight against climate change through equitable ecological transitions domestically and abroad that reduce inequalities and actively engage young people. 

Report - CINI (in Italian)

Canada promises extra US$36 million for flood recovery, polio eradication in Pakistan

On September 13, 2022, Prime Minister Justin Trudeau announced new funding to support flood response and polio eradication in Pakistan, totaling CA$48 million (US$36 million). 

Canada will allocate an additional CA$25 million (US$19 million) to respond to the flooding in Pakistan, in addition to a campaign to match donations up to a maximum of CA$3 million (US$2 million).

This funding announcement is in addition to Canada’s announcement on August 29, 2022, of CA$5 million (US$4 million) in disaster recovery assistance. In total, Canada has now provided CA$33 million (US$25 million) in assistance towards the flood response and longer-term recovery in Pakistan.

Canada’s Minister of International Development, Harjit Sajjan, also announced support of CA$20 million (US$15 million) to the Global Polio Eradication Initiative (GPEI), via the World Health Organization (WHO) and the United Nations Children's Fund (UNICEF), to support polio eradication in Pakistan. The contribution is part of Canada’s ongoing CA$190 million (US$143 million) commitment to the GPEI.

Press release - Global Affairs Canada

News article - CBC

Netherlands provides additional US$4 million for Pakistan flood victims

On September 8, 2022, the Dutch Ministry of Foreign Affairs tweeted that it has contributed an additional €4 million (US$4 million) in relief assistance for the victims of severe flooding in Pakistan through the Dutch Relief Alliance and the Red Cross.

CSOs have also expressed concern for the situation, given its magnitude and the Pakistani government's ongoing ban on relief from international non-governmental organizations (INGOs).

A recent article estimated that flooding in Pakistan since June 2022 has affected the lives of 33 million people, with deaths totaling over 1,200. NGOs in Pakistan have experienced difficulty accessing affected populations and locations, citing the near-total flooding of the Sindh province as an example. Likewise, the flooding's impact on agriculture, including damage to Pakistan's second-largest granary and delays to the cotton harvest, have caused extensive consequences for individuals and the export sector.

In addition to the issue's magnitude, most INGOs, including those in the Netherlands, remain unable to offer relief in Pakistan. Pakistan’s Prime Minister Shabaz Sharif has refused to lift an ongoing ban on INGOs, instead asking high-income countries to donate to his ‘Prime Minister Flood Fund’. Some Pakistani voices have expressed concern over this strategy, noting history has shown that such donated funds rarely reach victims, instead lining corrupt leaders’ pockets. The Pakistani government likewise refused to accept support from the Indian government, citing a tense bilateral relationship.

While Dutch relief organizations have attempted to support local partners in Pakistan, increasing gas prices in the Netherlands are expected to decrease donations from individuals. Moreover, the ongoing nature of the disaster promises further destruction, as rain showers are predicted to overflow a sweet water lake outside of Karachi, which may cause a tsunami to hit the historical town of Sehwan.

Tweet – Dutch Ministry of Foreign Affairs

News article – Nederlands Dagblad (in Dutch)

News article – Nikkei Asia

UK NGOs list new development priorities for Parliament

In response to a call from BOND, the UK international development NGO network, on September 7, 2022, working groups provided their priorities for the new UK government on international development.

Covering a broad array of topics, specific priorities included:

  • Publication of a fully-funded and sufficiently staffed cross-government civic space strategy;
  • Pro-active engagement by the Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office (FCDO) with NGOs to raise awareness of the importance of poverty-focused development cooperation;
  • Restored funding for civilian peacebuilding and conflict prevention and support for grassroots and local CSOs working in fragile and conflict-affected contexts;
  • Delivery on commitments made at the Global Disability Summit, FCDO Disability Inclusion and Rights Strategy (February 2022), and in the 2019 Conservative Manifesto relating to girls' education;  
  • Development of a strategy for supporting locally-led funding initiatives, including transparent and trackable targets for direct funding allocations to local actors;
  • Restoration of the 0.7% GNI/ODA target and prioritization of support for humanitarian efforts, including gender equality and food security;
  • Leadership by the FCDO in tackling racism in the sector through inclusive engagement with NGOs and people of color to create a plan to address racism;
  • Reduction of the impact of sanctions on humanitarian action by issuing exceptions or general licenses for humanitarian work across all UK sanction regimes;
  • Commitment by the Prime Minister to greater transparency and accountability of public finance, with specific regard to the ODA budget; and
  • Restoration of funding for water, hygiene, and sanitation efforts to 2018 levels and integration of these sectors into the UK’s global health and climate approach.

News article – BOND

Germany supports Pakistan with US$14 million to address flood disaster

On September 7, 2022, German Minister for Economic Cooperation and Development Svenja Schulze discussed how Germany should support Pakistan in addressing the acute flood disaster and strengthening climate change adaptation in the medium- and long-term with Pakistani Climate Minister Sherry Rehman.

During the discussions, Schulze announced that Germany will provide €13 million (US$14 million) to Pakistan. The funds are primarily directed at supporting the most vulnerable groups through an existing social security system. In both the medium- and long-term, the German Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development (BMZ) will focus its support on increasing the quantity and quality of domestic and global climate adaptation efforts in Pakistan.

Press release – Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development (in German)

Archi appointed Italian UN Permanent Representative in Rome

Bruno Archi was appointed as the Permanent Representative of Italy to the United Nations in Rome on September 5, 2022.

Italy's Permanent Representative to the UN Rome hub leads negotiations with and within the UN food security organizations such as Food and Agricultural Organization (FAO), the International Fund for Agricultural Development (IFAD), and the World Food Programme (WFP). Furthermore, the Permanent Representative works closely with Bioversity International (BI) and the International Development Law Organization (IDLO) based in Rome.

In addition, Archi will represent Italy at the Committee on World Food Security (CFS) and the United Nations Humanitarian Response Depot (UNHRD) in Brindisi, which works closely with food security UN agencies in Rome.

Archi has served as Diplomatic Adviser in the Prime Minister's Office and Special Representative for Balkan Reconstruction. In addition, he was a Member of Parliament from 2013 - 2018 and Deputy Foreign Minister during Enrico Letta's government from 2013 - 2014.

Twitter – Minister of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation

'Action must accompany EU sustainability goals,' says Dutch Finance Minister

In a speech at the Bruegel Annual Meeting in Brussels on September 6, 2022, Dutch Finance Minister Sigrid Kaag highlighted the importance of public and private investment in climate mitigation, calling for direct action and funding to accompany the ambitious goals of governments and firms. 

Minister Kaag started her speech by highlighting the importance of common European climate policy, such as the Fit for 55 package that aims to align current laws with the 2030 and 2050 ambitions. She then continued to note the importance of EU funds, such as the Recovery and Resilience Facility (RRF) which requires member states to spend 37% of funds on green measures, and that at least 30% of funding from the Multiannual Financial Framework (MFF) and the RRF together must contribute to climate goals.

However, Kaag emphasized the insufficiency of EU funds and called on member states to allocate sufficient funding for climate change mitigation, referencing the Dutch commitment of US$38 billion to the domestic energy transition from 2021-2031.

Minister Kaag also encouraged the financial sector to generate change in polluting industries through more sustainable and responsible investment. She likewise noted growing calls among stakeholders for transparency from banks, insurers, or pension funds as they adopt more sustainable practices. Moreover, the Minister emphasized the stabilizing impact of climate change mitigation for the sector itself.

Speech – Dutch Government

Italian CSOs urge government to finalize common agricultural policy strategic plan

On September 5, 2022, 17 Italian CSOs issued a joint statement asking the Italian government to revive and conclude discussions regarding the country's Strategic Plan on the common agricultural policy (CAP).

The EU's CAP program is designed to strengthen the relationship between agriculture and society with a strong focus on farmers. In 2021, the EU decided to reform the CAP; countries will implement new strategic plans on January 1, 2023. 

While seven European countries (Denmark, Finland, France, Ireland, Poland, Portugal, and Spain) have already received approval from the European Commission, the Italian Ministry of Agriculture has not submitted its revised plan.

In the statement, the CSOs asked the government to share its revised plan. The CSOs additionally called upon the government to address the European Commission's 40 pages of feedback through collaboration with all relevant CSOs at both the national and local levels, a crucial step to ensuring Italy’s agricultural strategy aligns with broader environmental goals set in the EU’s Green Deal, Biodiversity Strategy for 2030, and Farm to Fork Strategy.

The Ministry of Agriculture promised that the new Strategic Plan will be submitted to the European Commission by the end of September 2022. 

Press release  Cambiamo Agricoltura (in Italian)

European Commission to announce climate adaptation finance pledge at COP27

On September 5, 2022, European Commission Executive Vice-President Frans Timmermans gave a speech at the Africa Adaptation Summit in Rotterdam, in which he stated that he will push for more climate adaptation financing from the Commission.

Timmermans added that, while the Summit invite came too late for the Commission to prepare a pledge in time, the EU should be able to make a new pledge at COP27; he also spoke about the potential for Africa to be a renewable energy powerhouse by shoring up solar and wind.

Speech - European Commission

EIB to triple global climate adaptation finance by 2025, focus on African countries

European Investment Bank (EIB) President Werner Hoyer spoke about the bank’s plans to partner with African countries and triple its climate adaptation finance by 2025 during the Africa Adaptation Summit in Rotterdam on September 5, 2022; the move equates to investing around US$25 billion in countries in Africa by 2025. 

The summit, organized by the Global Center for Adaptation (GCA), convened UN, government, and business leaders for the first global summit of its kind.

In his opening remarks, Hoyer discussed the EIB’s plans to invest in climate adaptation projects across the African continent as a part of the Africa Adaptation Acceleration Program (AAAP). The program, created by the African Development Bank (AfDB) and GCA, aims to scale up climate adaptation finance in Africa by US$25 billion by 2025. 

The EIB’s Climate Adaptation Plan enables it to scale up investments and take on more risk while focusing on countries most vulnerable to climate change.

Press release - EIB

Speech - EIB

India and Germany strengthen 'Green and Sustainable Development Partnership'

On September 5, 2022, German Minister for Economic Cooperation and Development Svenja Schulze met with the National Institute for Transforming India (NITI), India’s leading government think tank, to discuss how to implement and advance the 'Green and Sustainable Development Partnership' (GSDP) between the two countries.

This meeting signals a deepening of relations established in May 2022, when India and Germany signed a memorandum of understanding (MOU) on a 'GSDP.'

The discussion focused on the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), climate protections, energy transition, new technologies, and agroecology. Schulze announced that Germany will contribute an additional €4 million (US$4 million) to support the GSDP, especially for the implementation of the SDGs and climate protection measures at the Indian state level.

Press release – Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development