Finland assumed the Presidency of the Leading Group on Innovative Financing for Development at the beginning of September. The Presidency strengthens Finland’s role as a creator and promoter of new models for development financing in accordance with the goals laid down in the Government Programme and the Development Policy Programme. The model devised by Finland, where the intention is to target income possibly arising from the auctioning of emission allowances for use by development cooperation, serves as an inspiration for other countries as well.
The role of new sources – both private-sector and public-sector sources – of financing supplementing traditional development aid will be emphasised in the future, so that long-term development challenges can be met. At the same time, it is important to find workable models for ensuring that the financing really supports sustainable development in poor countries and ownership in its implementation. In analysing new funding mechanisms, ensuring the effectiveness, fairness, cost-effectiveness and transparency of the instruments will also have a central role. An example of innovative financing is the levy on airline tickets, already in use, among others, in France.
Finland has raised innovative financing sources and taxation issues, for instance, by supporting the OECD Informal Task Force on Tax and Development and by organising an international transfer pricing conference together with the Tax Justice Network and the Service Centre for Development Cooperation (KEPA) in Helsinki in June 2012.
The Leading Group on Innovative Financing for Development has been in operation since 2006. The Group has 63 member countries. Moreover, international organisations and development financing institutions (the World Bank, regional development banks, UN agencies) and NGOs participate in the Group’s activities. In addition to Finland, the following EU Member States are members of the Group: Austria, Belgium, Cyprus, France, Germany, Italy, Luxembourg, the Netherlands, Poland, Romania, Spain and the United Kingdom. Other members of the Group are, for example, Norway and the European Commission. The six-month Presidency rotates alternately among developing countries and industrialised countries. The Group’s Permanent Secretariat is located in France. Among others, Mali, Japan, France, Norway and Korea have held the Presidency in past years.
The practical work associated with the Presidency is done together by the Ministry for Foreign Affairs and the Ministry of Finance with the support of the central official expert bodies.
For more information: Iina Soiri Advisor, Ministry for Foreign Affairs, tel +358 9 1605 6172, email@example.com, Counsellor Pekka Hukka, Ministry for Foreign Affairs, tel +358 9 1605 6033, firstname.lastname@example.org, and Financial Secretary Jussi Lehmusvaara, Ministry of Finance, tel. + 358 2 955 30186, email@example.com