Friday, November 22, 2019

August / 2019

Breakthrough in Norway-Guyana forest deal after eight-year delay

 
Norwegian aid funds amounting to NOK 600 million, which have been languishing at the Inter-American Development Bank (IDB), may soon be released to pay for a 30-40 megawatt solar energy project in Guyana. This will be Norway’s first payment to Guyana since 2011, as part of a climate forest agreement signed ten years ago. The long delay could cost Guyana over USD 25 million due to the weakened Norwegian currency.
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Norway defends billion-dollar Amazon Fund as Brazilian minister threatens to exit

 
In response to reports that Brazil’s Environment Minister Ricardo Salles is considering closing down the Amazon Fund, the centre piece of Norwegian climate forest partnership with Brazil, Norway’s Climate Minister Ola Elvestuen has issued a press release in defence of the fund and the partnership.
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New Gavi strategy targets children receiving no vaccines

 
In spite billions of dollars invested over 20 years by Gavi in vaccines for the poorest countries, immunisation coverage has stagnated, and millions have been left behind. In its new five-year strategy, Gavi will now focus on children who receive no vaccines at all. For the first time, Gavi is also considering supporting middle-income countries that have fallen behind in immunisation.
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High expectations for new Finnish government’s first aid budget

 
As Finland’s new centre-left government prepares to launch its first budget later this week, a question mark hangs over whether the many promises of increased funding for NGOs, UN agencies, emergency operations and climate will be met. The aid level will likely reach about 0.44 per cent of GNI.
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New voting rules remove Green Climate Fund deadlock, pave way for donor pledges

 
The absence of decision-making rules within the Green Climate Fund board has been a sticking point for donors as they consider their pledging levels for the upcoming multi-billion dollar replenishment. Agreement on a “robust and transparent” voting mechanism has cleared away this hurdle.
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Brazil forest deal in crisis. Norway says negotiations are still on-going

 
Following international reports that Norway has frozen its forest aid to Brazil, triggered by Environment Minister Ola Elvestuen’s comments to media in Oslo, the Norwegian Climate Ministry has issued a press release saying that “negotiations are still on-going.” A source at the ministry confirms to Development Today that Norway has made no decision to hold back its funding.
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Finnish budget proposal 2020: slow climb in aid level

 
UN agencies, Africa and NGOs are the winners as the new Finnish government increases aid after four years of austerity and cuts. Finnish aid will reach 0.42 per cent of Gross National Income (GNI) next year, but the long-term goal is to raise aid to of 0.7 per cent of GNI.
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NOK 3 billion in unspent climate forest aid stranded at Brazilian bank

 
Since Brazil closed the steering committee of the Amazon Fund, which was set up to channel Norwegian financing of rainforest projects, the bilateral cooperation is in limbo, raising questions about what to do with NOK 3 billion sitting unspent in the fund. A lawyer at Norad says Norway has the right to demand that the money be reimbursed. 
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Trump aims for deep cuts ahead of Global Fund replenishment

 
As the Global Fund prepares for its sixth replenishment, the United States could stand in the way of reaching the USD 14 billion target.
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