July 18 2022, New York - The United Nations Joint Sustainable Development Goals (SDG) Fund activated a Development Emergency Modality to respond to the unfolding global food, energy, and financing crises.
The war in Ukraine set in motion a three-dimensional crisis that is producing alarming cascading effects on a world economy already battered by COVID-19 and climate change.
The speed and interconnected nature of these impacts call for a swift response by the United Nations development system to help countries address the socio-economic impacts, while further strengthening the case for a faster renewable energy transition, economic diversification, digital transformations, and food staples, accelerating progress towards the SDGs.
“UN Country Teams are using the Development Emergency Modality of the Joint SDG Fund to help governments devise strategic interventions to cope with the multi-dimensional crisis in food, energy, and finance, and accelerate the transformation of food systems.” Deputy Secretary-General's remarks at the ECOSOC Meeting on the Transition from Relief to Development, 2022.
Providing a swift response
The Joint SDG Fund activated an envelope of US$ 22.9 million, under the guidance of the United Nations Global Crisis Response Group (GCRG) to support 87 UN country teams covering over 100 countries and territories, in response to the global crisis on food, energy, and finance. Through this process, the Fund received 83 joint proposals, requesting up to US$ 250,000 per UN country teams and US$ 400,000 per Multi-Country Offices. To date, the Fund has distributed US$ 16.6 million to 63 UN country teams.
In its rapid investments, the Fund supports United Nations Country Teams under the leadership of Resident Coordinators - to enable UN teams to move quickly to generate analytics around the crisis and work with Governments and partners to identify and implement preventive actions.
The Development Emergency Modality offers a swift avenue for donors and development partners to contribute demand-driven financing toward a coordinated UN response for a period of 6 months addressing the three-dimensional crisis. With gratitude to the Government of Germany for the commitment to the Joint SDG Fund and United Nations Reform, the first to contribute to the Emergency Development Modality.
“We are impressed by the speed of the Development Emergency Modality’s disbursements and the broad integration of many different agencies into this ambitious undertaking”, noted Bärbel Kofler, Parliamentary Secretary of State of Germany’s Ministry of Development Cooperation, while meeting with the Joint SDG Fund leadership on the margins of the 2022 High Level Political Forum.
“We are proud to contribute to the Emergency Modality a further US$ 2.7 million from Germany, earmarked to support food security.”
The triple crisis
The current market reduces countries' capacity to access basic food. If unaddressed, this will trigger wider social and political instabilities. Interventions will provide support to address immediate food insecurity and nutritional impacts, and longer-term financing solutions for resilient food systems.
As increased energy prices are affecting the most vulnerable, interventions will enhance access to affordable energy, reducing the impact of soaring prices and dependency on fossil fuels.
The increased volatility in financial markets poses serious threats to developing countries. Soaring inflation, unemployment, disruption of value chains, and monetary pressures on local currencies in recurrent humanitarian crises deepen inequalities.
The Joint SDG Fund’s Development Emergency Modality enables a rapid and collective response of the repositioned UN Development System to help prevent further derailing of progress towards the SDGs in vulnerable countries across the globe.