UN World Conference on Disaster Risk Reduction International cooperation in support of a post-2015 framework for disaster risk reduction

Publié: 14 mars 2015

Ministerial Roundtable

Introductory remarks / speaking points

Mr Tadateru Konoé, President of IFRC

  • It is an honor to be with you today and to discuss ‘International Cooperation’. This is a decisive topic and the core of how we believe we should take disaster risk reduction to the next step.
  • We all know that International cooperation will make a difference should we take seriously the implementation of the new Hyogo Framework for Action.
  • First, at a global level, international cooperation will be critical to establish a coherent framework in which disaster risk reduction and associated Hyogo Framework for Action are fully integrated and complementing the post-2015 development agenda. Sustainable development goals would not make great sense without a robust building block devoted to disaster risk reduction and community resilience.
  • Linked to this, we have a collective role at designing financing mechanisms that reflect collective commitments. Back in 2009, at the 2nd Global Platform for Disaster Risk Reduction held in Geneva, a number of countries pledged to allocate 1% of ODA for disaster risk reduction. Almost six years later, this commitment has not even been half met. Only 0.4% of ODA is allocated for disaster risk reduction, and more than 50% of this 0.4% comes from just two donors: Japan and the World Bank. At the very least, international cooperation should strengthen support for risk reduction financing according to a wide-reaching and more balanced commitment. Whilst meaningful partnerships with governments  will still stand, we also have growing faith in public-private collaboration for expanding our reach.
  • Our international cooperation should also further consider the role of governments and parliaments in adopting legal frameworks to accept international disaster assistance but also to make disaster risk reduction as a regional, national and local priority. In 2014 the IFRC and UNDP together launched the biggest ever comparative study on effective law and regulation for disaster risk reduction. There is a long way to prioritize disaster risk reduction, particularly at local levels, to ensure for example the safe construction and location of homes and schools. The IFRC will continue providing practical guidance to countries wishing to strengthen their laws and regulations, in accordance with the Post-2015 Framework for DRR.
  • But international cooperation should not only focuse on established national and international institutions. As Red Cross Red Crescent, we firmly believe that the role of volunteers should be recognized as social capital but also an enduring force to bring about change. This is not only in reference to the estimated 6-billion US dollars economic value of our network of more than 17 million volunteers worldwide. It also reflects the changing patterns of volunteering and the eagerness of a growing number of people to be part of the solution in harnessing new technologies or when it comes to address the consequences of climate change.
  • Finally, I will not forget the crucial importance of communities. There is no way to make effective disaster risk reduction without the participation of and equal partnership with communities. There is no solid risk reduction mechanism nor lasting impact if not owned by communities and focused on their resilience and local knowledge. Investing in communities is not only a driver of sustainable change, it is also cost effective. From our cost-benefits analysis, we estimate that for each dollar allocated to community risk or vulnerability reduction, we save more than 15 dollars from emergency response.
  • It is clear to us that in the face of climate change, urbanization, population growth, environmental degradation, rising natural and technological hazards, or protracted crises, there is a need to stand by a principle of collective responsibility, collective action and collective accountability, by all and for all.
  • This has led us to launch the ‘One Billion Coalition for Resilience’, an initiative to scale up community and civic action on resilience. We recognized that resilience comes from individuals and communities themselves, and we need to work with them in the process of reconnecting with their own power and taking ownership of their lives.
  • Our goal is to engage at least ‘one person in every household’ around the world in active steps towards enhancing community resilience. It is an ambitious goal that will require maximizing both existing good practices and innovative solutions when it comes to international cooperation. Our way forward is to be a catalyst for collaboration and partnership with a wide range of actors from civil societies, public authorities, private sector, media, schools, universities and all those who wish to contribute to this coalition of will and action, at every level from local to global.
  • Put it simply, only in partnership and cooperation, can we contribute to transforming the lives of the most vulnerable people and support their efforts to build resilient communities.