Explanation of Vote for the Adoption of the International Financial System and Development Resolution

Tom Carnahan
Public Delegate
New York, New York
November 23, 2021


On behalf of the U.S. Government, I would like to extend our thanks to the facilitators for their efforts throughout the negotiation process. The United States strongly supports the achievement of the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development and implementation of the Addis Ababa Action Agenda. As we have done in previous years, however, the United States is voting against this resolution due to language from previous iterations that remains unchanged in this year’s resolution.

On PP13, the United States does not agree with the reference to “increasing protectionism and inward-looking policies.” We view this reference as a veiled and inappropriate reference to the use of WTO-consistent trade remedy measures and enforcement actions against unfair and market-distorting trade practices of others.

The United States does not agree with vague language in OP2 and OP11 that implies that the international financial, monetary, and trading systems generally lack “coherence and consistency.” The United States considers statements that attempt to prescribe the appropriate characteristics of international systems that are independent of the UN system to be ultra vires and non-binding.

Regarding OP15, the United States continues to disagree with the decision to highlight specific banks when numerous multilateral development banks do exceptional work to advance important international development objectives.

With respect to OP16, we again disagree with language that encourages the provision of “flexible, concessional, fast-disbursing, and front-loaded assistance” without regard to the financial sustainability of the institutions, the development impact and effect on poverty reduction of such assistance, or the presence of an appropriate macroeconomic policy framework. The concessionality of assistance should be determined by governance bodies of the International Financial Institutions, which allocate limited concessional resources considering income and creditworthiness. Furthermore, this language could be read as encouraging multilateral development banks to refrain from adhering to the high social, environmental, and fiduciary standards that are essential to achieving sustainable development.

Regarding the workload of this committee, we believe we could improve the efficiency and effectiveness of our work if we were to triennialize and biennialize a number of resolutions, including this resolution.

Finally, we would like to refer you to our general statement delivered on November 18, which details a number of additional concerns also found in this resolution, including with respect to the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development, illicit financial flows, trade issues, and the Addis Ababa Action Agenda.