Partners for change: Top donors to UN Women

UN Women relies entirely on voluntary financial contributions to sustain its work and programmes for gender equality and women’s empowerment. In 2015, 156 governments made generous commitments to reach this objective, through core funding that provides UN Women with flexible resources that can be used for all its work, including under-funded or emerging priorities.

To shine a spotlight on our top donors, who have committed to funding in the double-digits, we bring you a series of interviews with Ministers from our top donor countries. We ask why gender equality is important for their government; how women’s empowerment and gender equality feature in their multilateral aid policy; and why UN Women is a great fit for channeling their development assistance.

UNITED KINGDOM

UK Secretary of State for International Development Justine Greening. Photo courtesy of DFID - UK Department for International Development

Core contribution to UN Women (2015): USD 18.9 million
Non-core contribution (2015): USD 3.7 million

In a December 2013 interview, UK Secretary of State for International Development Justine Greening referred to her Government's release of an additional USD 11.9 million in core funding to UN Women, saying she wants this funding to help improve the impact of the UN’s collective gender response and to further UN Women in its work with partner countries to tackle gender issues. The UK has always been among UN Women's top donors; with total core funding reaching USD 19.53 in 2013, USD 20.74 million in 2014 and USD 18.9 million in 2015. Read more »

Read her Tweet of the announcement.


SWITZERLAND

Director General Martin Dahinden. Photo couresty of the Swiss Agency for Development and Cooperation

Core contribution to UN Women (2015): USD 16.3 million
Non-core contribution (2015): USD 10.3 million

In a February 2014 interview, the Director General of the Swiss Agency for Development and Cooperation of the Federal Department of Foreign Affairs at the time, Martin Dahinden, referred to his Government's increased 2014 pledge, saying UN Women can play an essential role in the implementation of gender equality policies and the development of expertise world-wide, if it has sufficient resources. Switzerland has always been among UN Women's top donors; with total core funding reaching USD 13.21 in 2013, USD 15.50 million in 2014 and USD 16.5 million in 2015. Read more »


NORWAY

In an interview, Norway’s Minister for Foreign Affairs, Børge Brende, refers to his country's continuous financial commitment as one of the top core donors to UN Women, calling UN Women an important partner that is on the right track and has been delivering.

Core contribution to UN Women (2015): USD 12.6 million
Non-core contribution (2015): USD 12.6 million

In an April 2014 interview, Norway’s Minister for Foreign Affairs, Børge Brende, referred to his country's continuous financial commitment as one of the top core donors to UN Women (contributing USD 16.24 million in 2013, USD 14.83 million in 2012, and USD 14.68 million in 2011), calling UN Women an important partner that is on the right track and has been delivering. Norway has always been among UN Women's top donors; with total core funding reaching USD 16.24 in 2013, USD 15.92 million in 2014 and USD 12.6 million in 2015. Read more »


FINLAND

Finnish Minister for Foreign Trade and Development Kai Mykkänen. Photo: Finnish Ministry for Foreign Affairs

Core contribution to UN Women (2016): USD 11.23 million 
Non-core contribution (2015): USD 3.3 million

In a May 2017 interview, the Finnish Minister for Foreign Trade and Development Kai Mykkänen referred to his country’s combined core and non-core contribution of approximately USD 14.53 to UN Women in 2016, and urged other Member States to also step up and help UN Women deliver on its mandate of achieving gender equality by 2030. Finland has been one of UN Women’s largest donors, topping the list in 2014Read more »


SWEDEN

 Swedish Minister for International Development Cooperation and Climate, and Deputy Prime Minister, Isabella Lövin. Photo: Kristian Pohl/Government Offices of Sweden

Core contribution to UN Women (2016): USD 12 million
Non-core contribution (2015): USD 24.8 million

In a 2017 interview, the Interview with Swedish Minister for International Development Cooperation and Climate, and Deputy Prime Minister, Isabella Lövin explains why her Government believes UN Women’s work is such an important priority for its multilateral aid. Sweden has always been among UN Women's top donors; with total core funding reaching USD 19.33 in 2013, USD 10.02 million in 2014, USD 8.3 million in 2015 and 12 million for 2016. Read more »


DENMARK

Danish Minister for Development Cooperation, Rasmus Helveg Petersen. Photo credit: Ulrik Jantzen

Core contribution to UN Women (2015): USD 8.8 million
Non-core contribution (2015): USD 2.1 million

In a January 2014 interview, the Danish Minister for Development Cooperation at the time, Rasmus Helveg Petersen, referred to his Government's additional end-of-year core funding to UN Women, saying his country wants to strengthen UN Women’s role as the most important international agency for data collection and analyses on women’s empowerment and gender equality. Denmark has always been among UN Women's top donors; with total core funding reaching USD 10.68 in 2013, USD 10.98 million in 2014 and USD 8.7 million in 2015. Read more »


AUSTRALIA

Julie Bishop, Australian Minister for Foreign Affairs.

Core contribution to UN Women (2016): USD 6.2 million
Non-core contribution (2016): USD 13.8 million (preliminary data)
United Nations Trust Fund to End Violence (2016): USD 1.5 million (preliminary data)

In a December 2016 interview, Australian Minister for Foreign Affairs, Julie Bishop, speaks about how the Australian Government continues to elevate gender equality in its foreign policy, economic relationships and aid programmes. The recently signed Partnership Framework Agreement (2016 – 2020) between UN Women and Australia outlines its multi-year contribution of USD 22.74 million to UN Women core resources over the course of the next four years, providing UN Women with greater funding predictability and flexibility to support the implementation of the current Strategic Plans for 2014-2017 and the upcoming Plan for 2018-2021, as well as the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development. A longstanding champion for improving gender data, Australia is also supporting the UN Women’s Flagship Programme Initiative Making every woman and girl count, which aims to close the gender data gaps and ensure that sex disaggregated data are collected and used to develop evidence-based policies. Read more»

Related link: Australia and UN Women reaffirm partnership


JAPAN

Core contribution to UN Women (2015): USD 4.7 million
Non-core contribution (2015): USD 15.5 million

In a June 2015 interview, Japanese Foreign Minister Fumio Kishida, referred to his Government's  2015 combined core and non-core contribution to UN Women of USD 19.2 million—almost double its 2014 donation. In an interview, Minister Kishida reinforced messages by Prime Minister Shinzo Abe underlining Japan’s commitment to gender equality and desire to become one of UN Women’s top contributors. Japan is among UN Women's top donors; with total core funding reaching USD 4.33 million in 2014 and USD 4.7 million in 2015, as well as 14.5 million in 2015 non-core funding. Read more »



Featured foundation

Over the past five years the Zonta International Foundation has contributed more than USD 3 million towards UN Women efforts to end violence against women and girls around the world.
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UN Women and EU signing of statement renewing commitment to partnership. 15 June 2016.

Through dynamic policy dialogue, joint advocacy and awareness-raising initiatives, and funding for a multitude of programmes in more than 50 countries, the European Union and UN Women recommitted to their partnership on 15 June with a joint statement signed at the European Commission. More

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