GA: Financing for Development Forum - The Future of Financing for Disaster Risk Reduction

Statement delivered by State Secretary Bjørg Sandkjær at the side event The Future of Financing for Disaster Risk Reduction - Paving the Way for a Resilient Future

Norway has been a strong supporter of the work on disaster risk reduction (DRR) for years. DRR is a cornerstone in our work to increase climate change resilience and adaptation. I am especially happy to join colleagues from UNDRR on this stage and I would like to use this occasion to express gratitude for your enduring leadership in the field.  

Norway – together with Australia, Indonesia and Peru – is proud to be one of the Co-chairs of the Group of Friends for Disaster Risk Reduction. I deliver this statement however in my national capacity.  

Disasters pose a formidable obstacle to the achievement of the Sustainable Development Goals, underscoring the urgent need for proactive measures – including new thinking on financing.  

At a time of concerning escalation in the frequency and severity of crises exacerbated by climate change, it is more important than ever to invest in prevention. Investing in preventive DRR is the right thing to do, and it’s smart.  

Right, because it will reduce unnecessary suffering for the people affected, and smart because prevention is more cost-effective compared to responding to crises. In a world where the gap between humanitarian needs and the resources available to meet them is increasing, we need to use our resources as efficiently as possible.  

Despite growing awareness of the importance of disaster risk reduction, investment in such initiatives remains inadequate in the face of escalating costs. While post-disaster response and recovery efforts are essential, there exists a need for greater emphasis on addressing the underlying vulnerabilities that render communities susceptible to disaster in the first place.  

Norway believes it is important to do both. This requires a shift in focus towards proactive risk reduction strategies that prioritize prevention alongside response and recovery. We have started to adjust our course to get this point. Anticipatory action and financing are important in this regard. 

Domestic revenue mobilization is at the heart of SDG funding, and the same goes for preventive DRR investments. We must mobilize far larger sums than we have up until now.  

The systemic risks posed by disasters to global economies, particularly in developing countries, cannot be understated. Despite the risks and challenges we face; we see opportunities for collective action and solidarity.  

The outcomes of the Midterm Review of the Sendai Framework provide a roadmap for strengthening disaster risk reduction financing and enhancing global resilience.  

Next year’s Global Platform for Disaster Risk Reduction will provide an important milestone for the discussions on DRR financing.  

One of my main messages at the Forum for development financing is this: Tax revenue is the cornerstone of every country’s long-term social progress, and one of our most important tools for reducing inequality.  

Official development aid must underpin national efforts. Norway remains among the top contributors of development aid, with 1,09 percent as the share of GNI for sustainable development.  

As we move towards Spain in 2025, Norway would like to contribute to a balanced approach where we raise the ambition on mobilizing resources, as well as on how we utilize the financial resources available more effectively. This is important when we know that approximately 5-7 % of global GDP is lost to corruption annually. 

I look forward to hearing from you on this important topic. Thank you.