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  • Friday, 22 September 2023

Minister of International Cooperation H.E. Dr. Rania A. Al-Mashat Delivers Egypt’s speech at the High-Level Dialogue on Financing for Development at the United Nations 78th General Assembly

The Minister of International Cooperation H.E. Dr. Rania A. Al-Mashat delivered the speech of the Arab Republic of Egypt at the High-Level Dialogue on Financing for Development at the 78th session of the United Nations General Assembly in New York, with the aim of discussing reform of the global financial architecture and strengthening the call for increasing climate financing for developing countries.

In H.E.’s speech, the Minister highlighted a number of key recommendations to address the issue of equitable financing for development, the most important of which are ensuring the rights of developing countries to quality and quantity finance, especially for the most vulnerable; ensuring access, affordability and resource allocation to overcome insufficient financing and distribution of finance in mitigation and adaptation efforts.

H.E. also stressed exploring innovative financing tools such as debt swaps for economic resilience, as well as strengthening multi-stakeholder country platforms to catalyze private investments, focusing on public-private-philanthropic partnerships to efficiently provide soft financing that enhances development financing. 

In her speech, the Minister said that emerging and developing countries were suffering from financial challenges even before COVID-19, and then the successive crises since the pandemic and the Russian-Ukrainian war and its effect on food and energy prices, further burdened developing countries.

The Minister indicated that developing countries represent 84% of the world’s population and account for 58% of the global GDP, but they possess less than 20% of global financial assets, and this disparity highlights the urgent need to overcome the financing gap for development.

Al-Mashat stated that the financing gap for the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs)  is expected to rise to reach $4.3 trillion annually from 2020 to 2025, an increase of 70% from pre-pandemic levels, and that successive global shocks have contributed to the exacerbation of financing the SDGs.

The Minister explained that although Official Development Assistance (ODA) reached an all-time high in 2020, with $162 billion, and Official Development Finance (ODF) reached $307.7 billion; it was still insufficient to meet the ambitious development objectives, according to the  Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD). H.E. added that redirecting just 1% of the trillions in the global financial system in support of SDGs in developing countries would be sufficient to bridge this financing gap and support progress towards the SDGs.

Al-Mashat concluded her speech by emphasizing that the challenges of financing development are immense, but the potential for positive change is equally substantial. H.E. said that: “It is our collective responsibility to bridge the financing gap, support climate action, and empower developing countries to achieve sustainable and inclusive development. By working together and implementing just financing principles, we can make significant strides towards a more equitable and resilient world for all.”