NATIONS (Xinhua) -- The United Nations Peacebuilding
Fund (PBF) on Wednesday received 151 million U.S. dollars in
pledges from 26 member states at its Pledging Conference held
here on the sidelines of the UN General Assembly, the Fund said.
The pledges cover the years 2017-2019
and will go toward projects the Fund underwrites in more than 20
countries with the aim of sustaining peace and preventing
The event was co-hosted by the
governments of Kenya, Mexico, the Netherlands, South Korea,
Somalia, Sri Lanka, Sweden and the United Kingdom.
The conference sought pledges
totalling 300 million U.S. dollars over three years.
“Three hundred million dollars for the
years 2017-2019 will only begin to redress the imbalance
between what the world spends on warfare and crisis
response, and what it devotes to preventing conflict and
building peace,” UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon told the
“Without the Peacebuilding Fund, we
will be forced to stand by as we witness the preventable
loss of countless lives and the extinguishing of hope for
millions more,” said the secretary-general.
The total amount pledged falls short
of the Fund’s goal of a working capital of 100 million U.S.
dollars per year, but is enough to allow the PBF to continue its
work in the short term while member states and the UN seek
solutions for long-term funding.
“In the weeks and months ahead, let us
transform the political commitments made today into a
tangible financial commitment to the Fund,” said Deputy UN
Secretary-General Jan Eliasson in his closing remarks during
“Let us work together to make sure
that the secretary-general’s Peacebuilding Fund has the
resources it needs to continue to be a strong and reliable
partner to countries and people striving to sustain peace,”
Eliasson said. “This is a task more critical than ever.”
The co-hosts underscored the
importance of the Peacebuilding Fund and the UN combined focus
on sustaining peace.
“A change of mind-set in how we go
about doing the business of peace also requires a different
kind of players, a different kind of willingness and
commitment in how we invest in the peacebuilding complex,
including prevention,” said Amina C. Mohamed, the cabinet
secretary for foreign affairs of Kenya. “Today we saw a good
initial step in that direction. There is still much work to
Claudia Ruiz Massieu Salinas, the
secretary of foreign affairs of Mexico, said, “It is imperative
to create a new paradigm for peace: It is not only about a shift
of terms, but a truly different way to understand, build, and
“A peace that is sustainable also
implies a collective responsibility to provide the necessary
financial resources to the initiatives that promote this
approach,” she said.
“Peacebuilding is a core business for
the UN and core business needs sustainable funding,” said
Albert Koenders, the foreign minister of the Netherlands.
“Our pledges today will lay a
foundation for the path toward sustaining peace,” said Yun
Byung-se, the foreign minister of the Republic of Korea.
For his part, Swedish Foreign Minister
Margot Wallstrom said, “Our commitment to the sustaining peace
agenda must be backed by sufficient investments in conflict
prevention and peacebuilding.”
“The Peacebuilding Fund provides fast,
flexible finance to fragile states to enable vital
peacebuilding activity to take place when it is needed the
most,” said Baroness Anelay, the British minister of state
at the Foreign and Commonwealth Office.
“I was delighted to attend this
Conference and pledge the UK’s support, alongside so many
other countries, so that the fund can continue its vital
role in preventing conflict.”
The PBF was created in 2006 as a fast
and flexible pre-positioned fund to help other UN agencies by
funding peacebuilding efforts at a time when countries emerge
from conflict and other funds are not yet available.
The Sustaining Peace Agenda, based on
twin resolutions adopted by the UN General Assembly and the UN
Security Council in April, extended the role of the PBF to also
include conflict prevention.