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Report of the UNSDG Chair
on the Development Coordination Office


The way forward


The way forward

Member States decided to fund the Resident Coordinator system through voluntary contributions, the doubling of the UNSDG cost-sharing and a 1% levy on tightly earmarked third-party non-core contributions to UN development activities. As of April 2020:

  • 36 Member States

    36 Member States have contributed to the Special Purpose Trust Fund for the Resident Coordinator system, with sums ranging from USD15,000 to USD23 million, totaling USD118 million in 2019.

  • 17 UNSDG members

    17 of 19 UNSDG members contributed USD75 million out of an expected USD77.5 million. The UNSDG injection of funding was vital to roll out the new Resident Coordinator system.

  • 30$ Million

    The levy has yielded about USD30 million. DCO developed guidance for the operationalization of the coordination levy, in consultation with Member States and the UNSDG.

All three funding streams for the new Resident Coordinator system combined amounted to a total of USD223 million - a shortfall of USD58 million from the USD281 million budget presented to Member States.

  • DCO ensured a smooth transition, in line with cash flow, by recruiting staff in stages.
  • This phased approach resulted in 2019 closing with expenditures of USD143 million and commitments of USD7 million, in total USD150 million.
  • Full expenditure is projected in 2020.
  • Full funding is required for 2020 and beyond.

The functioning of the Resident Coordinator system, including its funding arrangement, will be subject to review before the end of the 75th session of the General Assembly.

Moving forward, key priorities include strengthening the foundations of the reinvigorated Resident Coordinator system, including by:

  • Redesigning the Resident Coordinator selection system to ensure the right profile in the right place at the right time, completing staffing at country, regional and global level to ensure the capacities to deliver, defining mutual accountabilities between the Resident Coordinator system and the UN development system entities at regional and global level

  • Contributing to the implementation of unfinished mandates of the UN development system reform, including the review of multi-country offices, the review of UN regional assets and the strengthening of system-wide evaluation.

  • Ensuring sustainability of funding, including by expanding the funding base.

  • Only one year after the new Resident Coordinator system has begun operations, the decision to elevate coordination for sustainable development to an independent, impartial and empowered function is showing real results.

  • The COVID-19 pandemic will likely be the litmus test for the reinvigorated Resident Coordinator system to live up to its promise.