Financing for Development: Italy and Zambia, as co-facilitators, keep focusing on Outcome Document FfD Forum

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NEW YORK, APRIL 12 – As the ECOSOC Forum on Financing for Development approaches, Italy and Zambia, the two co-facilitators, keep focusing on delivering a comprehensive Outcome Document capable of leveraging on innovation, technology, private sector partnerships and gender equality to intensify global action in support of the Sustainable Development Goal. The Italian Minister for Economy and Finance Giovanni Tria will address the Forum on opening day, Monday April 15, during an afternoon ministerial panel on “Promoting inclusive growth and reducing inequalities”.

The FfD Forum is an annual platform to promote consensus among key stakeholders on financing for sustainable development. Over the course of the Forum’s four days of nearly 50 different panel discussions and side events, representatives from governments, financial institutions, civil society and the private sector will engage in dialogue on key trends and best practices that impact sustainable finance. These include climate change, inequalities and disruptive technologies. The resulting inter-governmental, agreed conclusions and recommendations are then embodied in an outcome document presented on Forum’s final day.

As part of this year’s Forum, a SDG Investment Fair will run from 15 to 17 April and offer a number of sessions to highlight the importance of national investment plans and projects designed to close the SDG investment gap, including opportunities to mobilize long-term investments for sustainable infrastructure, access capital and invest in projects to strengthen the social sector and promote investment in line with the SDGs.

This year Forum will be held from Monday, 15 April to Thursday, 18 April in the Trusteeship Council Chamber, while side events and the SDG Investment Fair will be held throughout the UN. Italy and Zambia will co-sponsor a panel on Tuesday April 16 on “Unlocking private financing to close the energy gap” with the World Bank and Enel Green Power. In this side event UNCTAD will discuss the state of investments in the energy sector and show newest data on energy investments and SDG 7, while Enel Green Power will represent the private sector, presenting the different ways the company is investing in emerging markets (building and operating power plants, investing in and operating utilities, and innovating and investing in electrification solutions). During the session, Enel Green Power may highlight investments it made such as Scaling Solar in Zambia, and its solution to improve electrification in rural areas as well as highlighting what conditions are needed at the country level to unlock private financing of sustainable electricity.

Attending the opening of the Forum on Monday morning will be H.E. Ms. Inga Rhonda King, President of the Economic and Social Council; H.E. Ms. María Fernanda Espinosa, President of the General Assembly; Mr. António Guterres, Secretary-General of the United Nations; Mr. Tao Zhang, Deputy Managing, Director of the IMF; Mr. Mahmoud Mohieldin, Senior Vice President for the 2030 Development Agenda, United Nations Relations, and Partnerships, World Bank Group and Mr. Tim Yeend, Chef de Cabinet and Principal Advisor to the Director General, WTO. Guterres will announce he is convening the “Global Investors for Sustainable Development,” a CEO-driven alliance that will focus on creating long-term investments for sustainable development by addressing policy and institutional obstacles. The outcome document negotiated by Italy and Zambia will be adopted on Thursday afternoon.

This year’s Forum will pave the way for the High-level Dialogue on Financing for Development in September 2019 that follows the SDG Summit. This year also marks the end of the first four-year cycle of implementation efforts on the SDGs and Addis Ababa Action Agenda. The 2019 Forum is at the center of the Financing for Development follow-up process and is designed to: 1) review the implementation of the Addis Agenda; and 2) forge consensus among diverse stakeholders and spread policy expertise to advance implementation against rising economic and non-economic risks. The 2019 Financing for Sustainable Development Report launched last week serves as the substantive basis for discussions as the report offers key recommendations and actions to align global economic policies and financial systems with the 2030 Agenda, including harnessing the potential of financial innovation, technology and digitization. (@OnuItalia)