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UN Women: Structured dialogue on financing

Statement at UN Women's first regular board session, given by Ambassador Geir O. Pedersen, 9 February 2016.

| Executive Board

Mr. President, Executive Director, Ladies and Gentlemen,

Thank you for the good and informative briefings prepared for this session, and the introduction to this meeting.

The increased global focus on gender equality and women’s rights is indeed encouraging. We agree with your assessment. Women’s rights and women’s participation are increasingly recognized to be both a goal in its own right, and a means to sustainable development and inclusive peace.

This is a victory won already. We commend UN Women on the part you have played in making this shift happen.

It is a key challenge and a major opportunity for UN Women, to respond to this new momentum. The follow-up of the Sustainable Development Goals and the women, peace and security agenda are two of the grand challenges that will demand our full attention.

These are no small tasks, especially in light of today’s financial and economic reality. As we work to make UN Women fit and funded for purpose, we need to realistically examine ambitions and activities against available funding.

Mr. President,

We commend UN Women for having mobilized a great number of contributing member states. Yet we recognize the need for more funding – and more flexible funding.

We welcome the new funding modalities. We hope they will lead to more flexible funding for UN Women.

We appreciate the good dialogue with UN Women on the new Flagships. This implementation model might lead to increased focus of efforts and higher efficiency. This is very commendable.

To deliver on these ambitions, it is essential that the upcoming mid-term review consider UN Women’s thematic priorities as well as the Flagships against needs, competence and resources. We would also welcome further clarification on UN Women’s role in the implementation of the Flagships, as well as the role of other UN organizations.

Norway encourages results-based financing. We welcome the new online reporting system. We look forward to accessing updated information on programs, results and funding gaps.

It is essential that only one results framework guide the overall work. We would appreciate more information on how the reporting on the Flagships relate to the reporting on the Strategic Plan.

Mr. President,

Finally, let me convey Norway’s deep appreciation of your work, and our continued commitment to UN Women.

Let me give you one example. For a long time Norway has supported UN Women’s work to mobilize Syrian women for peace. These women will now be available in Geneva for the peace talks, giving their perspectives and consulting the parties. This is exactly how we should work. A week before the Syria Conference in London, I received a phone call from UN Women’s leader. She wanted to make sure that women’s perspectives were not forgotten and that the co-hosts did their part. And we all did. The women were included in the sessions. And - Phumzile and Norway’s Minister of Foreign Affairs hosted a breakfast for Syrian women. This is the kind of partnership we looking forward to and trust to continue to have.

Thank you.