17 Jun - 30 Jun 2021

Development Financing (Keeping People out of Poverty)

Samantha Happ • 9 June 2021

Welcome to this discussion on Development Financing (Keeping People out of Poverty)!

The second discussion in the ‘keeping people out poverty’ series is on development financing, with the reflection paper as a starting point. The discussion aims to capture the impact of the COVID-19 outbreak and the associated social and economic crisis on development finance and UNDP’s direct and collaborative responses in assisting countries to manage these impacts and articulate forward-looking risk-informed measures and strategies. It will also collect insights on more recent developments and UNDP’s role in the development finance space. In 2021/2022, IEO is conducting a formative evaluation of UNDP’s contribution towards financing the pandemic recovery, and your contributions to this discussion will help inform it. We welcome your inputs, insights, comments, insights, and lessons learned are welcome until 30 June 2021!


Overall Lessons Learned

1. Have you come across similar lessons to those in the Reflections paper on Development Financing in your work? Feel free to share lessons around what worked and why.

UNDP and UNCDF Development Finance Support

2. Please share innovative examples of UNDP or UNCDF’s work in development finance (e.g., digital, INFF, national SDG financing framework, local development finance,  SDG budgeting, financial inclusion, tax and debt instruments, mobilising private capital, risk finance and insurance etc.), including what worked and why with regard to programme design, partners, institutional arrangements.

3. Are there capacity building initiatives supported by UNDP to improve policy for better development financing options?

Country Typology: Specific Development Finance Support Needs

4. What are the challenges specific to different country typologies (such as MICs, LDCs, SIDS, conflict countries) in attracting and scaling up development finance? How can UNDP better use its efforts to address these challenges, including by helping countries in their efforts to mobilize more resources domestically as well as tap into innovative financing options?

Private Sector SDG Finance and Involvement

5. How can UNDP increase its engagement of the private sector and promote its alignment with sustainable development at national and the local levels? How can UNDP assist governments in their efforts to attract investment in priority areas for the SDGs and engage regional and international private investors for sustainable development? Any examples, including, as regards effective tools, methodologies, and approaches to facilitate engagement on addressing policy bottlenecks?

UNDP Fiscal Policy Support

6. Rising debt levels across a wide range of countries in the wake of COVID-19 posed a significant constraint for countries to deliver services to the poor and finance inclusive recovery plans as well with regard those hit hardest in restructuring their debt portfolios in ways that could release fiscal space for priorities. What has been UNDP’s role assisting governments in these areas, including in respect to national and local budgets, and what can it do to enhance the impact of its support?

7. What efforts did UNDP take to assist governments in their efforts to boost the national revenue base? What are the challenges and opportunities?

Please indicate which question(s) you are responding to in your comment. 

Comments (6)

Vijayalakshmi Vadivelu Moderator

On behalf of UNDP and the Independent Evaluation Office (IEO), we warmly welcome you to this e-discussion on Development Financing, as part of IEO’s larger series on learning from past evaluations. I will be one of your moderators for this discussion, in addition to Thomas Beloe and Radhika Lal, with support from Andrew Fyfe at UNCDF.

Your comments, reflections, best practices, and lessons learned are most welcome here, and will inform the IEO Thematic Evaluation on Financing the Pandemic Recovery, which will be presented to the Executive Board in 2022. You may comment on your overall thoughts, or you may respond to the specific questions in any order (please include the questions number you are responding to in your comment).

Thank you and looking forward to our fruitful discussions this week!


Vijayalakshmi Vadivelu, Senior Evaluation Advisor

Ana Rosa Monteiro Soares

Silvia Morimoto and Stefan Liller, I saw your countries have launched the First Southern Cone Report of Sustainable Finances and Impact Investment in post COVID 19 recovery. May I ask you join the conversation and share some of your lessons and expectations. As you know we are now in the process of evaluating UNDP efforts on recovery financing, Richard Jones is our lead evaluator. It would be great to hear from you. Thank you

Thomas Beloe Moderator

Marcos Neto Sahba Sobhani Jan Kellett Sebnem Sener Marcos Mancini Mariana Gonzalez Luisa Bernal Orria Goni Nergis Gulasan Suren Poghosyan Vito Intini 

Radhika Lal and I are looking forward to working with Vijayalakshmi Vadivelu and Andrew Fyfe to moderate this discussion. The Reflections paper provides us with a helpful assessment of our past work on development finance. this e-discussion provides us an opportunity to bring together examples of our current initiatives and growing engagements on SDG Financing, and as you help us do this, your contributions will inform the IEO’s formative evaluation on Financing the Pandemic Recovery to the Executive Board in 2022. The stories of the last decade are still relevant, but the story has moved on at pace, as we move to accelerate and scale up our work on SDG finance in the decade of action. Please activate your networks and let’s bring into this discussion some of the initiatives that are defining our role on SDG financing. We’re eager to have you join the conversation in the comments below!

Vijayalakshmi Vadivelu Moderator

Hi colleagues, can you please share examples where basket or pooled financing is used in COVID-19 response.  UNDP Nigeria is facilitating a basket fund along USAIDS.  Mohamed Yahya can you please share more information on this Deqa Ibrahim Musa .

Radhika Lal Moderator

Dear Vijayalakshmi Vadivelu and colleagues at IEO. Thanks for sharing the reflections paper and organizing this discussion to gather additional insights and reflections. In response to Q2 Innovative examples of UNDP or UNCDF’s work in development finance (e.g., digital, INFF) and Q1,  I want to pick up on Lesson 8 Fragmented COVID-19 response will weaken efforts to address SDGs reversals posed by the pandemic and more specifically on "Concrete areas need to be identified for enabling specific development financing solutions.  It is also important to pay sufficient attention to long-term solutions such as increasing domestic revenue as the pandemic provides opportunities to strengthen revenue generating systems and processes."  This is absolutely true and it is what the 70 odd Joint SDG Fund supported component 1  joint programmes (where UNDP serves as the technical lead) in support of Integrated National Financing Frameworks seek to address by focusing on the various building blocks (including development finance assessments [DFAs], formulation of action oriented financing strategies, governance arrangements and M&E) to assist governments in more effectively utilizing and tapping into both public and private resources in an integrated way in support of recovery plans and/or new national development plans as the case may be. As these were initiated in 2020 they would not be captured in any evaluation but are important as the next-gen approach to  financing - which go beyond traditional approaches to aid coordination to encompass a variety of financing flows and actors. Colleagues on the frontlines at country level can share insights on new approaches to enhance resource mobilization for key development priorities and also engage private sector (For Asia Pacific, e.g. Ranjit Kumar Chakraborty and  Linda.Germanis@undp.org for Bangladesh with regard to the national development plan or colleagues at the Fiji MCO, e.g., Moortaza Jiwanji  who are making the linkages of the DFA process with the recovery plan.) Hoping colleagues from the various regions can contribute, including Thomas Beloe and Tim Strawson who have both deep knowledge and birds-eye views. thanks

Radhika Lal Moderator

Hi again, also with regard to question 1, but picking up on lesson 7 Adequate consideration of the alignment between the needs of environment vertical funds and government is essential for mobilizing development financing. There are a number of important threads here ranging from vertical funds to energy to climate finance, so hoping  various colleagues in the NCE team, e.g., Akiko Yamamoto Marcel Alers and Milou Beerepoot , could come in and tag others on but also hoping to hear from colleagues focused on the governance of climate finance (with a public finance focus) , e.g., Asad Maken and others can come in to reflect on the ways that UNDP has been supporting governments to integrate climate change into the various stages across the budget cycle. The latter is important because for many countries, domestically mobilized resources, and not international climate finance, remain the largest source of climate financing. Also hoping colleagues from the Ghana CO for example, Paolo Dalla Stella and Stephen Kansuk ,  can come in on the support that UNDP has been providing to ensure alignment of GCF projects and the various types of engagements with the private sector in the context of clean energy.

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