Delivering development finance to achieve the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development: Making development finance contribute to environmentally sound industrialization

Action taken by the Trade and Development Board 2023
Delivering development finance to achieve the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development: Making development finance contribute to environmentally sound industrialization
Agreed Policy Recommendations
Closing plenary
3 Nov 2023


The Intergovernmental Group of Experts on Financing for Development, Reaffirming General Assembly resolution 69/313 of 27 July 2015 on the Addis

Ababa Action Agenda of the Third International Conference on Financing for Development,

Recalling General Assembly resolution 70/1, Transforming our world: the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development, of 25 September 2015, and relevant General Assembly follow-up resolutions,

Recalling paragraph 100 (r) of the Nairobi Maafikiano (TD/519/Add.2), which called for the establishment of an intergovernmental group of experts on financing for development, as well as paragraph 122 of the Bridgetown Covenant (TD/541/Add.2), which states that the work of the Intergovernmental Groups of Experts at UNCTAD are important elements under the intergovernmental machinery,

Noting the internal and external challenges for developing countries to increase domestic revenue collection,

Acknowledging the written and oral contributions from participants that enriched the debate during its seventh session,

  1. Notes with concern that, at the midpoint of the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development, progress on the Sustainable Development Goals remains behind schedule, that cascading global crises, namely, the pandemic, geopolitical tensions and conflicts, rising debt, a deepening climate crisis and biodiversity loss, food crisis and the cost-of- living crisis, mean that countries are facing difficult policy choices, and that as many as 3.3 billion people live in countries that spend more on debt servicing than on health or education;
  2. Notes with concern that the world is facing a climate catastrophe and biodiversity loss, and the window to avert them and meet the Paris Agreement goals is rapidly closing; in this context, inclusive and sustainable industrial development is a key element of an effective climate change strategy that leads to a climate-resilient development;
  3. Reiterates that public policies and the mobilization and effective use of domestic resources, underscored by the principles of national ownership, are central to our common pursuit of sustainable development, including achieving the Sustainable Development Goals, and at the same time reiterates that international public finance plays an important role in complementing the efforts of countries to mobilize public resources domestically;
  4. Encourages the development, dissemination and diffusion and transfer of environmentally sound technologies to developing countries on favourable terms, including on concessional and preferential terms, as mutually agreed;
  5. Recognizes that adopting investment standards based on environmental, social and governance-related criteria and sustainable business models can contribute to the process of diversification towards inclusive and sustainable industrial development in developing countries and, in this regard, welcomes the United Nations Global Compact that attests to companies’ adherence to sustainability standards and the Finance Initiative of the United Nations Environment Programme that has facilitated the increase in reported environmental, social and governance-related investment;
  6. Welcomes the recent landmark agreements concluded under the Common Framework for Debt Treatments beyond the Debt Service Suspension Initiative, while emphasizing the need to further strengthen the Common Framework to ensure its implementation in a predictable, timely, orderly and coordinated manner, including to increase the fiscal space of countries in debt distress, thus helping them to achieve the 2030 Agenda and support inclusive and sustainable industrial development and, in that regard, calls upon all Paris Club and Group of 20 creditors to adopt guidelines to ensure timely debt restructuring, and encourages greater private-sector participation through more clarity in assessing comparability of treatment;
  7. Reiterates the need for strengthened international cooperation to explore the full range of policy tools to overcome impediments to private investment for sustainable development and, in this regard, the sharing of experiences relating to innovative financial instruments, such as the issuance of Sustainable Development Goals bonds, is welcome;
  8. Acknowledges that universal access to affordable, reliable, sustainable and modern energy for all is an integral part of poverty eradication and the achievement of the 2030 Agenda;
  9. Supports multilateral development banks’ inclusive reform efforts, and calls for continued tangible progress in this regard, including by securing increases to grants and concessional finance, and better leveraging their capital bases and considering ways for the respective boards of multilateral development banks to increase their capitalization and to enhance the representation and the voice of developing countries in the decision-making process;
  10. Notes that there is more potential for concessional finance, blended finance, local currency financing/lending and guarantees to scale up financing for the Sustainable Development Goals;
  11. Notes the importance of boosting private sector investment for the 2030 Agenda, and of related domestic policies, as well as of a transparent, stable, predictable and enabling investment climate to enhance such investment flows;
  12. Recognizes the potential, and encourages enhanced support, of microenterprises and small and medium-sized enterprises in the creation of sustainable and inclusive jobs, as well as promoting sustainable development, especially in developing countries;
  13. Recognizes the importance of special drawing rights as one of the key mechanisms in contributing to the Sustainable Development Goals, welcomes the achievement of the $100 billion target through the voluntary channelling of special drawing rights or equivalent contributions, recommends the exploration of further voluntary options related to special drawing rights that could serve the needs of developing countries of the International Monetary Fund, and calls on countries able to do so to work on further special drawing rights rechannelling mechanisms, including through multilateral development banks to leverage special drawing rights in a highly productive way to finance sustainable development in developing countries, while respecting relevant legal frameworks and the need to preserve the reserve asset character and status of special drawing rights;
  14. Highlights that climate financial intermediary funds provide most multilateral grants and other concessional finance for climate while noting that volumes remain low compared with investment needs and, in this regard, recommends that the exploration of innovative ways to expand the grants and concessional finance disbursed to developing countries to meet the challenges of climate adaptation and mitigation continue, and also reiterates the need to ensure that climate finance does not lead to an unsustainable debt for recipient countries;
  15. Reiterates that providers of official development assistance need to meet their respective commitments, finance at concessional terms and on long-term maturities is best suited for development and climate finance and official development assistance averages only half the United Nations target of 0.7 per cent of donor country gross national income, and notes that official development assistance reached its highest level in 2022 during the unprecedented multiple crises;
  16. Welcomes the establishment of loss and damage funding arrangements and a fund to assist particularly vulnerable countries in responding to loss and damage, as agreed at the twenty-seventh session of the Conference of the Parties to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change in Egypt;
  17. Reiterates that climate-contingent clauses already being introduced by some creditors, as well as debt-for-climate, debt-for-nature swaps and other innovative finance instruments, could contribute to developing countries addressing climate and debt-related challenges;
  18. Highlights that forests are essential to sustainable economic development and the maintenance of all forms of life, efforts should be made to promote a supportive international economic climate conducive to sustainable management of forests in all countries, with the promotion of sustainable production and consumption, and all sources of funding will need to be tapped into in order to accelerate sustainable use, protection, restoration and conservation of forests, which may improve value added and market access;
  19. Acknowledges the role of just energy transition partnerships that are new platforms aimed at accelerating investment in renewable and clean energies of economies;
  20. Recalls the request by the General Assembly for the Intergovernmental Group of Experts on Financing for Development to present the outcome of its work as a regular input to the Economic and Social Council forum on financing for development follow-up (General Assembly resolution 72/204, paragraph 27), in accordance with the terms of reference of the Intergovernmental Group of Experts.