On March 31, UN Secretary-General António Guterres announced the establishment of the new United Nations Covid-19 Response and Recovery Multi-Partner Trust Fund to assist countries in responding to the Covid-19 pandemic and to stimulate recovery as quickly as possible once the crisis is over. Norway has been a strong advocate for the establishment of a fund of this kind.
‘The new fund will help to ensure a coordinated international effort to limit the long-term negative consequences of the Covid-19 pandemic. Norway is now providing an important initial contribution, and we will consider further contributions in the time ahead,’ said Minister of International Development Dag-Inge Ulstein.
The aims of the fund, as identified by UN Secretary-General Guterres, is to both enable countries’ authorities to tackle the health emergency, to reduce the social and economic impact of the pandemic, and to assist countries in the post-crisis recovery. The Secretary-General’s intention is for this to be a flexible funding instrument that will make it possible to respond quickly to the needs of individual countries. The UN’s aim is to mobilise USD 1 billion for the fund in 2020 and USD 2 billion in total.
‘The UN has a leading role to play in the response to the pandemic. The new fund will promote a coordinated UN response at country level in support of national governments. It is intended to meet more long-term needs as well as providing immediate emergency aid for the implementation of pandemic response measures. It is important to do what we can to enable UN organisations to carry out this work as effectively as possible,’ Ms Eriksen Søreide said.
The fund is designed to complement the UN’s Global Humanitarian Response Plan and WHO’s Strategic Preparedness and Response Plan.