Feature story

Paris Leading Group gathers to discuss financing development in times of crisis

28 May 2010

Leading Group on solidarity levies to fund development

The sixth plenary meeting of the Leading Group on Solidarity Levies to Fund Development is taking place in Paris 28-29 May 2009. France, President of the Leading Group since the beginning of 2009, is hosting this year’s plenary with over 200 participants in attendance.

The meeting was opened by Mr Bernard Kouchner, French Minister of Foreign and European Affairs and Mr A. Joyandet, French Minister of State for Cooperation and Francophony. Mr Kouchner spoke of the need to implement innovation for development.

The United Nations and innovative financing

Dr Philippe Douste-Blazy, Special Advisor to the Secretary-General of the United Nations in charge of Innovative Financing spoke about the United Nations’ role in promoting innovative financing. The I-8 Group for the Millennium Development Goals held its first meeting in Geneva on 20 May.

This high-level conference marks an important step in international mobilization for these mechanisms before the next General Assembly of the United Nations in September, during which a report on innovative financing by the Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon will be made public.

Addressing the opening session, UNAIDS Executive Director Michel Sidibé argued that innovative financing could help bridge the gap between development needs and resources committed and build a more just, equitable and healthy world. He also called for innovative investing, in particular in HIV prevention.

Leading Group on Solidarity Levies to Fund Development

The Leading Group is an informal forum of 55 member countries. Since its foundation in 2006 it has become an important platform for discussion, sharing information and promoting innovative financing mechanisms. The Paris Conference aims to be one in a series of events to better regulate globalization. One of the topics it will explore is how the renewal of financial mechanisms can improve the quality of development and promote sustainable growth.