OECD’s ENVIRONET, WP-STAT Evaluate Development Finance Reporting

OECD21 March 2014: A meeting convened by the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) Development Assistance Committee (DAC), the Network on Environment and Development Co-operation (ENVIRONET) and the Working Party on Development Finance Statistics (WP-STAT) discussed trends in the reporting of development and climate finance flows, including the use of the Rio markers for reporting under the Rio Conventions.

During the meeting, which was held from 20-21 March 2014, in Paris, France, the ENVIRONET-WP-STAT Task Team reviewed countries' reporting of environment-related official development aid (ODA), considered possible improvements to the Rio marker methodology, discussed the current status of international climate finance reporting, and considered future outreach and communication.

In reviewing members' reporting practices to the OECD DAC, the Task Team found that, while the DAC Statistical Reporting Directives were widely applied, they left too much room for interpretation, making it difficult to compare across countries. A number of strengths were also identified, including the Directives' simplicity, comprehensiveness and transparency.

In reflecting on country reporting on climate finance, presentations from Indonesia and Zambia noted that more guidance on what constitutes climate finance is needed. A subsequent presentation on the activities of the Partnership for Climate Finance and Development considered how the Partnership, which seeks to improve how climate finance is accessed, managed and used at the country, regional and global levels, might engage with the Task Team on countries' tracking of climate finance.

A session on the Rio markers found that countries do rely heavily on them for reporting under the Rio Conventions, but that many members are adjusting accounting methods and using other innovative approaches in the absence of standardized rules for current reporting needs. The Secretariats of the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) and the UN Convention on Biological Diversity (CBD) provided overviews of current reporting guidelines under their Conventions.

After an update on the accounting of multilateral climate-related finance flows, such as those through international finance institutions (IFIs) and development finance institutions (DFIs), the meeting ended with a discussion of ways to improve outreach and communication for promoting the use of the Rio markers. Participants noted that a number of efforts have been undertaken, including an updated website, publication of statistical flyers and organization of workshops. Proposals for further work in this area included: extending coverage of the statistical factsheets; enhancing user friendliness and access to data online; improving guidance on using and interpreting the Rio marker data; and boosting outreach to non-DAC members.

ENVIRONET is a network of multilateral institutions and development agencies from member countries of the OECD DAC. WP-STAT is also a subsidiary body of the OECD DAC. The OECD Rio markers were originally designed to assist member countries in completing their National Communications to the Rio Conventions, namely the CBD, the UN Convention to Combat Desertification (UNCCD) and UNFCCC. [OECD Meeting Webpage] [Meeting Agenda] [DAC ENVIRONET Webpage] [OECD Aid Statistics Webpage]