28 November 2018 New York – The 15th Anniversary of the India, Brazil and South Africa Facility for Poverty and Hunger Alleviation (IBSA Fund) was celebrated at the United Nations Headquarters today.
The event brought together Ambassadors of India, Brazil, and South Africa, plus delegates from more than a dozen missions, heads of UN agencies, and participants of the United Nations Global South-South Development Expo to reflect on the Fund’s thriving Southern partnerships to end poverty and hunger and achieve the Sustainable Development Goals.
Over the last 15 years, the fund has built capacity through partnerships with 20 countries across the globe – mostly least-developed countries. It has supported 32 projects in areas such as conservation agriculture, increasing water availability through desalination, and improving watershed management to protect environmental resources.
IBSA Countries have contributed over $37 million towards supporting the Global South in their journey towards achieving sustainable development.
An IBSA Fund 2018 video was screened at the event:
“At a time when multilateralism is vitally needed to solve global challenges, the IBSA Fund is a strong expression of solidarity between three Southern countries for the benefit of the most vulnerable people in the world,” said Ms. Maria Luiza Ribeiro Viotti, Chef de Cabinet to UN Secretary General. “IBSA countries are actively involved in the introduction of projects that reflect local priorities. The Fund works with a broad range of UN country partners, contributes technical expertise, and operational capacity through their network to share experience and amplify knowledge.”
“Fifteen years ago, India, Brazil and South Africa came together to launch this unique initiative in the long tradition of South-South cooperation,” said Ambassador Syed Akbaruddin, Permanent Representative of India. “Since then, IBSA as a group has been committed to promote development partnerships with fellow developing countries in the spirit of equality and solidarity. 85% of the funding has been allocated to projects in 4 major areas: agriculture, employment, health and water. These are all essential aspects towards achieving poverty and hunger alleviation, which remains the focus of the Fund.”
Ambassador Mauro Vieira, Permanent Representative of Brazil said, “The IBSA Fund was established together with the IBSA group with the objective to facilitate human development projects that address poverty and hunger in developing countries. By doing so, initiatives supported by IBSA Fund contributed simultaneously to many Sustainable Development Goals. The IBSA Fund is demand-driven and projects supported by the Fund fully respect national ownership, equality, non-conditionality, mutual benefit and other overarching principles of South-South cooperation.”
Ambassador Jerry Matthews Matjila, Permanent Representative of the Republic of South Africa, stressed, “When a project receives funding support from IBSA Fund, a certain percentage of the project budget is often aimed for capacity building. The project is a small start, but when the government takes over, the impact can be scaled up. This requires strong governance, monitoring systems and accountability. In addition, partner developing countries are never asked to pay back, which is a symbol of solidarity mutually shared among by IBSA countries.”
H.E. Serei Chumneas, Under Secretary of State, Ministry of Education, Youth and Sports (MoEYS), of the Kingdom of Cambodia spoke about development results of the IBSA project with Cambodia, stating, “As Cambodia has the largest generation of youth in its history with young people aged 10-24 comprising over two-thirds of Cambodians. Each year, roughly 300,000 Cambodians enter the workforce presenting the country with a ‘youth bulge’ that requires substantial investment in enhancing youth employability and provision of additional decent job opportunities. The UNV-IBSA project has sharpened both technical and competency skills, especially the awareness and confidence among youth on teamwork, problem-solving and contributing to community development as responsible citizens.”
“I join others to highlight the important achievements and commend IBSA on the unveiling of the 2018 IBSA Fund report today,” said Ambassador Riyad H. Mansour, Permanent Observer Mission of the State of Palestine. “As one of the beneficiaries of the Fund, the State of Palestine expresses deep appreciation for the development assistance extended to the Palestinian people.” Ambassador Mansour also shared many positive impacts from four initiatives that have been implemented and completed throughout the years, and that the State of Palestine is honored to have been the first and only country from the Arab States to receive support from IBSA Fund.
“I congratulate IBSA countries for their continued leadership and commitment to poverty eradication and sustainable development,” said Mr. Jorge Chediek, Director of UNOSSC and the Envoy of the Secretary-General on South-South Cooperation. “The United Nations Office for South-South Cooperation is proud to partner as Fund Manager and Secretariat of the IBSA Fund to support Member States’ demand-driven and innovative South-South cooperation projects.”
Watch the entire event: