CERF: High-Level Pledging Conference

Statement by Ambassador Ms. May-Elin Stener at the High-Level Pledging Conference for the UN Central Emergency Response Fund (CERF), 8 December 2017.

Read also: Norway increases contribution to the UN emergency response fund

Under-Secretary-General, Excellencies,

Norway is a strong and committed supporter of CERF. Norway has been the fourth largest donor to CERF since its establishment in 2006, and we have provided a total of 662.5 million US dollars to the fund.

CERF is an effective instrument for delivering rapid life-saving assistance and protection to people affected by humanitarian crises.

This year, we have seen many examples of how CERF funding has helped saving lives.

Early action by CERF in northeastern Nigeria, South Sudan, Somalia and Yemen, where millions of people were threatened by famine earlier this year, helped to prevent a much bigger crisis, although the situation remains difficult and more support is needed.

CERF is also a lifeline that provides critical support to people affected by the world’s most neglected and underfunded humanitarian crises, crises that have failed to attract adequate funding. The underfunded emergencies window is one of CERF’s unique features. No other global humanitarian financing instrument focuses specifically on underfunded crises. CERF therefore plays a vital role in ensuring that people trapped in these situations are not forgotten.

The increasing scale and intensity of the emergencies we are seeing today means that we need a larger, more robust CERF.

It is encouraging to see that CERF has surpassed its funding target for 2017 of 450 million dollars. We must build on this positive trend.

All in all, CERF has been a success story from the outset. Over the years, it has been refined and improved, and we are confident that OCHA is working hard to ensure that lessons learned are used continuously to improve results.

We see CERF’s new funding target of one billion dollars as an inspirational target. We need more discussions on what an expanded CERF will look like and what we need to do to get there. What more can be done to broaden and deepen CERF’s funding base?  What will be different, apart from the size of the fund?

We call on OCHA to work with the humanitarian community to develop a roadmap for the future, setting out concrete steps towards the fund’s expansion. A strong investment case will be a vital element of this work.


Mr Chair,

Today, I am proud to announce that Norway will increase its contribution to CERF in 2018 to a total of 420 million Norwegian kroner (approx. 52 million US dollars). This is more than a 10% increase in our annual pledge.

We are committed to maintaining at least this level of funding for the next four years, subject to parliamentary approval. We will sign a multi-year agreement with CERF, with a view to ensuring greater predictability of financing at the system level. This is in line with our Grand Bargain commitment to improve the efficiency and effectiveness of humanitarian response.

In addition, we hope to be able to announce an end-of-year top-up to our 2017 contribution shortly.

Thank you.