• Lead-organizer: African Development Bank (AFDB)
  • 17:30 - 19:00
  • Date: 17 Jun 2012
  • Room: T-4


Organizing partners

Lead: African Development Bank
Partners: UNECA, African Union, UNEP, UNDEP-ROA


Over recent decades, debate has been raging on the effectiveness of aid to achieve economic or development targets, with increasing focus on improving effectiveness of use, in particular in view of the current multiple crises. The potential result is a vicious cycle, i.e. the apparent lack of legitimacy that results from ineffective use of available resources may serve to reinforce the existing tendencies towards shrinking financing. This side event will serve as a platform for dialogue between African member States and their partners on: how resources can be mobilized for sustainable development ? both domestically and internationally ? with a particular emphasis on innovative sources of finance and leveraging resources from the private sector; and how national institutions can be assisted to effectively utilize these resources. The expectation is that active debate will lead to increased understanding of the options available for African countries, with regards to fostering the implementation of sustainable development commitments.

Detailed programme

1.1 The world of development finance, including finance for sustainable development, is very complex. Developed countries are finding it increasingly difficult to fulfill their commitments as regards the means of implementation (e.g. to provide 0.7% of their gross national product (GNP) to Official Development Assistance, as reaffirmed in 2002 at the International Conference on financing for development in Monterey Mexico). Today, the global economic crisis and other challenges are leading developed countries to focus on domestic issues, with resources for international cooperation seeming to be getting smaller.

1.2 In addition, there is an apparent divide between the managers of money (international finance institutions ? development banks, donors etc) and facilitators of development (e.g. NGOs, CSOs). It is not unusual that institutions that can access global financial resources are sometimes constrained by their inability to effectively operate at the level where sustainable development initiatives can most meaningfully be undertaken; and those who are able to operate at that level are either unable to raise the resources they need or are denied access to those who have such resources. The implication of this is that it is essential to also recognize that questions relating to financing for sustainable development cannot be effectively answered without taking into consideration the institutions through which such financing may be channeled.

Thematic Focus: The overall thematic focus of this side event is to establish a forum for dialogue on the opportunities and challenges related to long term finance for sustainable development in Africa, with a particular focus on innovative sources of financing. The specific objectives include, to:

(i) discuss Africa?s long term development finance strategy;
(ii) enhance knowledge on alternative sources of finance for sustainable development ; and
(iii) increase support for Africa?s development priorities in the context of existing and future financing mechanisms, such as the Global Environment Facility, Green Climate Fund and the Africa Green Fund, domestic resource mobilization.

Speakers: The event will be moderated by Senior News Anchor who will provide a general overview of the reasons prompting the discussions. He will introduce the panelists and explain their positions and why their experience is pertinent for this discussion. The following panelists will be invited :
i. International renowned expert from the UK;
ii. Prime Minister and Heads of States from AfDB Regional Member Countries;
iii. President of the African Development Bank;
iv. Co-Chair of the TC/Green Climate Fund;
v. Chairperson of the African Union Commission (AUC);
vi. Executive Secretary of UNECA;
vii. Representative of Mo Ibrahim Foundation; and
viii. Representative of Gordon Institute of Business Science, South Africa.

The panellists will address key question that may include:

i. What are the major impediments in Africa to date in mobilizing and accessing additional financial resources for sustainable development? And how can the emerging non- traditional donors be engaged effectively?
ii. What role for national institutions (ministries of finance) to improve the effectiveness of aid?
iii. What role for traditional and untraditional donors?
iv. The roles of the DFIs, such as the AfDB in financing sustainable development? - What can DFIs do to further encourage innovative financing for sustainable development? - How can DFI improve working relationship with other development actors such as NGOs and CSO?

The event will be attended by target audience and participants including:
i. High-level decision makers from African member states and their RECs, regional and sub-regional organizations, multilateral organizations, and bilateral organizations representatives;
ii. International researchers, scientists, and science and technology specialists who are actively engaged in advancing knowledge in financing sustainable development in developing countries;
iii. Practitioner community, including private sector, community based organizations and civil society organizations, such as NGOs, media and independent writers on financing sustainable development in Africa and development issues.

Potential contribution to the outcome of Rio+20: The primary outcome will be to raise awareness, increase knowledge and initiate dialogue on financing sustainable development issues in Africa and how these issues are embedded into the overall development agenda within the continent and beyond. The panel will also stimulate longer-term communication and collaboration between Africa and its partners on the need to improve Africa?s access to innovative sources of finance. Specifically, the event will result into the following outcomes that will contribute to shaping the Rio+20 outcome:

? Mechanisms for sustained sustainable development financing flows to Africa identified and discussed;
? Strategic alliances and partnerships to further address Africa?s sustainable development finance agenda built and strengthened;
? Improved Africa?s access to current and future sustainable development financing instruments including domestic resources discussed.
? Enhanced knowledge on the status of sustainable development finance in Africa;
? Better informed African decision makers and practitioners on the necessity of innovative sustainable finance for Africa.

Simultaneous interpretation in English and French will be required. The event room should therefore be equipped with interpretation booth and the relevant equipment.
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