The Leading Group on Innovative Financing for Development held a high Level Side Event at the MDG Summit in New York - "Innovative Financing for the MDG's" - on 21 September.
Among the key speakers were the Queen of Jordan, Foreign Ministers of Japan, France, Spain, Minister for Development Cooperation of Norway and Belgium, Philippe Douste-Blazy (Chair of UNITAID and UN Special Adviser on Innovative Financing for Development), the European Commissioner for Development, the OECD Secretary General.
The UNITAID Executive Secretary, Jorge Bermudez, presented the case for innovative financing by highlighting UNITAID's results in its four years of existence at a round table on innovative financing for health, which also featured the heads of GAVI and the Global Fund.
Philippe Douste-Blazy expressed the need for a UN resolution on innovative financing for development, so as to rally higher political support and generate a step-change in thinking.
A common theme that emerged from presentations was the focus not just on innovative ways of raising additional funds but also on innovative spending. UNITAID, in particular, has a good track record in this as it seeks to shape the health commodities market for sustainable access in developing countries, and has created the first ever medicines patent pool.
The next Leading Group meeting will be held in Tokyo on 16-17 December 2010.