Sunday, February 18, 2018

Leading Sida in a time of increased isolation

 
Leading Sida in a time of increased isolation
Compared with a decade ago, the global outlook today is somewhat pessimistic, and Sweden has become more isolated. This is the reflection of Carin Jämtin, the new Director General of Sida. She left her post as Minister for International Development Cooperation in 2006 and now looks back on that time as a more hopeful period.
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Donor earmarking of WFP funds makes it more difficult to reach forgotten crises

Increased donor earmarking of funds to WFP makes it more difficult for the world’s largest humanitarian agency to respond rapidly to crises that are outside the limelight of global politics. Funds that WFP can use freely have dropped from 12 to 6 per cent of its total budget over the last seven years.  
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Pneumonia vaccine remains expensive after 10 years of Gavi’s AMC funding

When the innovative USD 1.5 billion financing mechanism, the AMC, was launched by Gavi ten years ago, it was expected to do two things: accelerate the distribution of pneumonia vaccine among children in poor countries and incentivise more suppliers to enter the market, thereby increasing competition and pushing prices down. The AMC succeeded on the first but failed on the second.
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Danish aid targets return of 1,000 rejected asylum seekers

Danish aid targets return of 1,000 rejected asylum seekers

Denmark is for the first time directly linking development funds with the return of migrants whose applications for asylum have been turned down. So far DKK 50 million in aid have been allocated to facilitate the return from Denmark of 198 rejected asylum seekers to six countries, including Nigeria, Somalia and Afghanistan.
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Massive Swedish scale-up of flexible UN funding starting with WFP

As a first step in an ambitious plan to scale up multi-year flexible funding for several UN agencies, Sweden has entered into a four-year agreement with the World Food Programme worth SEK 3 billion (USD 370m).
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Norfund turned its back on Statkraft to focus on Africa

The Norwegian aid-financed investor Norfund expects to present a surplus of about NOK 2 billion for 2017, after taking full control of the hydropower investor SN Power last fall, a result of strong disagreement with the co-owner Statkraft about investments in Africa.
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Norway: New Conservative minister pledges sweeping aid reform

Norway: New Conservative minister pledges sweeping aid reform

Norway’s Conservative Party takes a stronger grip on development policy, appointing one of its top politicians, Nikolai Astrup, to be the party’s first Development Minister. The appointment is part of a government reshuffle, where the Liberal Party joins the minority government. The new minister now promises sweeping reforms of the Norwegian aid administration. 
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Finnfund, Swedfund and IFU adopt EU tax haven blacklist

Three Nordic aid-financed investment funds have on short notice decided to ban investments through tax havens blacklisted by the European Union.
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Out of Stockholm. Sida head office to be moved

The Swedish government decided this week that the headquarters of the Swedish International Development Cooperation Agency (Sida) is to be moved out of central Stockholm to the municipality of Botkyrka, 20 kilometres southwest of the city.
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NDF looks beyond Nordics to finance new trust fund

The Nordic Development Fund (NDF) is in discussions with several European donors to provide funding for a new trust fund for innovative climate projects in Southern and Eastern Africa. The trust fund opens a window that allows NDF for the first time to seek funding outside the Nordic region.
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Gavi applauds MSF’s effort to break Pfizer vaccine monopoly in India

Gavi applauds MSF’s effort to break Pfizer vaccine monopoly in India

Anuradha Gupta, Deputy CEO of the vaccine alliance Gavi, says Médecins Sans Frontières (MSF)’s legal challenge of a Pfizer patent in India could, if successful, contribute to making the pharmaceutical market more “healthy.” Revoking the patent would break Pfizer’s monopoly on pneumonia vaccine, opening the way for cheaper generic copies to enter the market.
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Two Danish NGOs merge. Huge new child sponsorship actor targets public funds

Two Danish branches of international NGO alliances, Plan Denmark and BØRNEfonden - Children and Youth Foundation, have merged to form the largest privately-funded development NGO in Denmark. Though both currently draw most of their income from child sponsors, they are looking to expand support from government donors.
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How Norway crippled Nobel laureate ICAN by cutting vital funding

How Norway crippled Nobel laureate ICAN by cutting vital funding

On Sunday the International Campaign to Abolish Nuclear Weapons (ICAN) receives the Nobel Peace Prize in Oslo. It is a slap in the face for Norway’s Blue-Blue government which brought the organisation to its knees two years ago by cutting all its funds. Norwegian aid accounted for almost 90 per cent of ICAN’s budget.
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Guyana climate deal stalled: 6th year with no payments

For the sixth year in a row, Norwegian aid-financed climate forest payments to the Guyana government have been stalled. 
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OECD urges Finland to restore it ‘flagging’ development aid

Massive cuts have pushed Finnish aid to its lowest level in a decade, reports the OECD peer review of Finland. The Paris-based aid watchdog calls on the Finnish government to produce a roadmap for restoring support to the poorest countries and raising aid to 0.7 per cent of GNI.
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Maria Håkansson takes over the helm at Swedfund

The board of the aid-funded investor Swedfund has appointed Maria Håkansson as the new Chief Executive Officer.
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‘Inadequate’ Swedish anti-corruption laws

Sweden is dragging its feet on implementation of the OECD’s Anti-Bribery Convention. Despite “repeated calls for action” following a review in 2012, Sweden has not yet put in place laws on corporate liability for bribing foreign public officials, the OECD states.
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Two Danish NGOs merge. Huge new child sponsorship actor targets public funds

Two Danish branches of international NGO alliances, Plan Denmark and BØRNEfonden - Children and Youth Foundation, have merged to form the largest privately-funded development NGO in Denmark. Though both currently draw most of their income from child sponsors, they are looking to expand support from government donors.
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