Paola Simonetti at HLPF2016 side event "Monitoring progress on the means of implementation of the 2030 Agenda"

On 11 July 2016, the UN Financing for Development (FfD) Office convened the high level side event "Monitoring progress on the means of implementation of the 2030 Agenda", on the fringes of the High Level Political Forum (HLPF2016), to discuss the work of the Inter Agency Task Force (IATF) and its report which monitors FfD Commitments. The meeting was well attended by Member States, UN Agencies, Civil Society Representatives and the Private Sector. Paola Simonetti, TUDCN Coordinator participated as a discussant on behalf of the ITUC and the CSO FfD Group more broadly.

Under Secretary General of the UN Wu Hongbo opened the meeting stating that the UN would appreciate input from Member States and non-government actors engaged in the FfD process, on how to make the IATF report a valuable exercise for the implementation of FfD commitment.

The FfD Office reported that work for the 2017 cycle of the IATF Report had started with a number of agency led Issue Briefs underway. The office also encouraged inputs on how to improve the impact of the IATF report on the outcomes of the FfD follow up forum and in turn into the HLPF.

Ambassador George Talbot, who oversaw the FfD Negotiations as one of the co-facilitators, emphasized that the follow up forum and process was one of the key outcomes in the Addis Ababa Action Agenda (AAAA). He highlighted, however, that follow up still needs to be reinvigorated and put into action by Member States. The report could give impetus to this and would be best used as a tool to yield real results and not simply a university exercise.

South Africa, who led the negotiations on behalf the G77, highlighted that the timing of the report was a factor that needs to be given more careful consideration.

A representative from the European Union emphasized the need for the report to provide a solid evidence based review of Addis commitments to inform the FfD follow up forums outcome.

Paola Simonetti, TUDCN Coordinator, offered several points reinforcing many of those already raised, while also putting forward a number of new ideas. To start she reiterated that the scope of the IATF report and in turn the forum was not limited to Addis commitments but encompasses all FfD commitments taken since the Monterrey Consensus was adopted. She suggested that the report find complementarity with the SDGs indicator framework and avoid duplicating the work of the SDG monitoring process. She offered that in order to do this, and maintain the integrity of the FfD agenda, the IATF report would be more valuable if it focused on those issues not covered by the SDGs, citing infrastructure investment and blended finance as examples. She seconded the points raised on timing of the report and its relationship to the FfD Forum. She closed by stating that non-executive actors need to be better involved in the development of the report.