The Norwegian delegation aligns itself with the statement made by Spain in its capacity as President of the Leading Group on Innovative Financing for Development, where Norway is a member.
Innovative financing mechanisms can make a positive contribution by assisting developing countries in generating additional resources for development and for combating climate change. However, they should not be used as an excuse for not delivering on official development assistance commitments Innovative financing comes in addition to ODA and should be a predictable and stable source of funding. In this respect Norway has raised its Official Development Assistance to above 1% of gross national income.
Norway supports and contributes to the various initiatives the Leading Group has promoted in the health field, such as UNITAID, the International Finance Facility for Immunisation (IFFIm), the GAVI Alliance, Advance Market Commitments (AMC) and the Global Fund to Fight AIDS, Tuberculosis and Malaria.
The UN High-Level Advisory Group on Climate Change Financing (AGF), co-chaired by Norwegian Prime Minister Stoltenberg and his Ethiopian colleague, Prime Minister Zenawi, pointed to taxation of financial transactions as a possible source of funds for financing measures to fight climate change.
An expert group appointed by 12 Leading Group countries, including Norway, assessed how taxation of the financial sector could be used to fund global public goods, development and climate measures. The expert group’s conclusion was that a levy on currency transactions is the most feasible alternative. It is estimated that a global currency transactions levy of 0.005% could generate more than USD 30 billion a year for global public goods. Norway advocates the introduction of a currency transaction levy. Together with other countries we are seeking to secure the broadest possible international support for this measure.
The IMF has done extensive work on taxation of the finance sector. Discussions are also taking place in the framework of the G20. The EU Commission has put forward a concrete proposal. We are looking forward to the outcome of the decision-making process in the EU. For Norway it is important to underline that in order for a levy to be effective, it should include as many countries as possible. We value this debate and look forward to a commitment to move forward on this agenda.