Addis Ababa, what’s at stake?

The Belgium Federal Council for Sustainable Development (FRDO-CFDD) organised a seminar on Finance for Development on 11 June 2015, in preparation for the Addis Ababa Conference from 13-16 July 2015.

During this seminar both the Belgium government and civil society came together to exchange their viewpoints and priorities for the Addis Ababa Conference on Finance for Development. The Belgium Trade Unions, CGSLB, CSC and FGTB invited Matt Simonds from the TUDCN-ITUC to give a trade union viewpoint on this important theme.

After the initial introduction the Belgium government presented their position in the FFD negotiations, by Pieter Vermaerke from the Department of Development Cooperation and Mark Van de Vreken, from the cabinet of the Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Development Cooperation, Alexander de Croo.

They indicated 6 areas of importance for the Belgian position:

  • Least developed countries
  • Domestic resource mobilization
  • Innovative sources of financing (including private sector)
  • Struggle against illicit financial flows
  • Non-financial means of implementation (like digitalisation)
  • Decent Work

During the next session speakers from civil society gave their input, where Matt Simonds emphasised the follow 5 main messages from a trade union perspective:

1. Decent Work as a Driver of Economic and Social Development (Domestic Resources)
2. Financing Social Protection (Domestic Resources)
3. Ensuring business accountability for Development – the role for Labour Standards (Trade and Private Finance)
4. Developmental Role of the State and the provision of Quality Public Services (Private Finance/Innovative Sources)
5. Policy space, democratic ownership and the Social Dialogue as a means and an end (cross-cutting)

He concluded by expressing the appreciation to the Belgium Government for taking the lead as co-chair in the ‘Group of Friends on Decent Work’.

For more information and the presentations see: