COVID-19: Germany doubles its support to UNDP’s flexible core funding

Germany’s strategic investment enables UNDP to help turn the greatest reversal of human development into a leap forward

July 13, 2020


New York – The United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) strongly welcomes the decision of the Government of Germany to more than double its contribution to the organization’s core funding, thereby significantly increasing its investment in UNDP. 

This increased support comes at a critical juncture. Over the past months, the coronavirus pandemic has wreaked havoc on the health and livelihoods of millions of people around the world, stressing every country it touches with potentially devastating social, economic and political effects.

UNDP estimates that global human development—a combination of the world’s education, health, and living standards - will likely fall this year for the first time since 1990 when the measurement began.  Urgent action is needed to address the health crisis, stabilize economies, and mitigate against future damage.

Flexible development resources like those provided by Germany enable UNDP to build on and  accelerate efforts to tackle the social and economic impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic, and to further invest in reducing conflict, strengthening institutions and the rule of law, and encouraging digital innovation.

Germany’s funding decision brings its total support to UNDP’s 2020 core resources to €110 million, - equivalent to more than $ 124 million, making Germany the largest funding partner to UNDP’s core resources. In 2019, Germany provided €50 million to UNDP’s core resources. As a strong supporter of multilateralism and international cooperation, Germany has been the largest government contributor to UNDP since 2017.

Gerd Müller, Minister for Economic Cooperation and Development of the Federal Republic of Germany, emphasized: “We are stepping up our engagement to support UNDP in responding quickly to the COVID-19 crisis. Together with our partner countries around the world we are working towards achieving a green recovery that is carbon-neutral and helps us move forward on achieving the SDGs.”

“This significant contribution of flexible resources reflects Germany’s strong commitment to the developing world and its appreciation of the importance of investing in a rapid global recovery from COVID-19. By leveraging the capacity and programmes of UNDP in 170 countries, Germany’s investment strengthens the capacity of the United Nations to help the world emerge from this crisis,” said UNDP Administrator Achim Steiner.

“Despite the pandemic, none of UNDP’s teams across the world have stopped working during these past months, because we are determined to deliver on our promise to leave no-one behind. We deeply appreciate the confidence and continued trust shown by Germany in our commitment and in our ability to deliver at this critical time,” he said.

Core resource contributions to the United Nations are unearmarked and thus not for specific projects. Rather, as set out by the UN Secretary-General through the Funding Compact with UN Member States, they are flexible, low-cost and low-transaction means which enable the UN to adapt to rapidly changing landscapes across the countries it serves. 

For example, core resources helped UNDP’s country teams to quickly mobilize support to the COVID-19 priorities of 130 countries, from helping government officials in Sudan to work remotely, to securing medical supplies in Nigeria, to developing an online learning platform for children in Moldova.

Today, UNDP and its sister UN agencies are working with countries across five regions to put in place socio-economic recovery plans, as part of UNDP’s role as the United Nations technical lead on the socio-economic recovery of COVID-19. Going forward, UNDP will assist countries to go beyond recovery, focused on four areas: governance, social protection, green economy, and digital disruption, with the Sustainable Development Goals as a compass.

Germany’s longstanding partnership with UNDP includes a focus on strengthening local resilience in conflict and crisis-hit regions, promoting effective responses to the impacts of the Syria crisis in neighboring countries, supporting the stabilization of areas regained from ISIL control in Iraq, and now the opportunity to transition to democratic governance in Sudan, for example. It also includes supporting the creation of 60 Accelerator Labs to explore, experiment and grow new development solutions.

Looking ahead, the partnership will include efforts to address the root causes of migration, incentivize private sector investment in emerging markets, including across Africa, tackle climate change, and strengthen gender equality and human rights.

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New York: Boaz Paldi;

UNDP is the leading United Nations organization fighting to end the injustice of poverty, inequality, and climate change. Working with our broad network of experts and partners in 170 countries, we help nations to build integrated, lasting solutions for people and planet.

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