Welcome to the United Nations

Strengthening global governance

The Addis Agenda welcomes recent reforms to the international financial architecture, and calls for additional measures to ensure that international mechanisms and institutions keep pace with the increased complexity of the world, and respond to the imperatives of sustainable development. The Addis Agenda builds on the Monterrey Consensus and Doha Declaration in calling for the implementation of governance reforms to ensure a more inclusive and representative international architecture.

Governance reforms at the IFIs

The World Bank and IMF are currently in the middle of discussions on further reforms to their governance and voting rights. The governors of the World Bank agreed in October 2015 to consideration during 2017 of a realignment of IBRD and IFC shareholding alongside consideration of a capital increase. They agreed to a dynamic formula to guide IBRD shareholding in October 2016. An IMF general review of quotas had also been due for conclusion in the autumn of 2017, but in October 2016 the governors of the IMF agreed to reset the timetable for completing the review to now be by the Spring Meetings of 2019 and no later than the Annual Meetings of 2019. For both institutions the last agreed reforms occurred in 2010 and final implementation of those reform packages are still underway as Member States subscribe to the additional shares agreed to be created.

Governance reforms at standard setting bodies

A number of public and private bodies set international standards for financial regulation and supervision which countries may be adopted into national frameworks. Members of SSBs are usually national regulators.

These institutions were generally set up by developed countries. Following the 2008-2009 financial crisis, the Financial Stability Board (FSB) and the International Accounting Standards Board (IASB) implemented governance reforms to give developing countries greater voice, in 2014 and 2016 respectively. Other standard setting bodies are developing ways for developing countries to have more input into norm setting and/or implementation discussions, often through regional consultative committees.

The main international SSBs include:

  • the Financial Stability Board (FSB), an international body founded in 2009 to coordinate national financial authorities and other SSBs, including the BCBS, IAIS, IOSCO, IASB, CPMI, and the BIS Committee on the Global Financial System;
  • the Basel Committee on Banking Supervision (BCBS) for standards on banking regulation;
  • the Basel Committee on Payments and Market Infrastructure (CPMI) for standards on payment, clearing, settlement systems and related arrangements;
  • the International Organization of Securities Commissions (IOSCO) for standards on securities regulation;
  • the Financial Action Task Force (FATF) for standards on combating money laundering,  terrorist financing and other related threats to the integrity of the international financial system;
  • the International Accounting Standards Board (IASB) for accounting standards; and
  • the International Association of Insurance Supervisors (IAIS) for standards on insurance industry regulation and supervision.

Leadership selection and staff diversity

In the Addis Agenda, Member States of the United Nations, as the shareholders in the main international financial institutions, committed to an open, transparent, gender-balanced and merit-based selection of the heads of the main international financial institutions. In 2016, both the World Bank and IMF reappointed their current leaders for further 5-year terms.In both cases the incumbents were the only candidates nominated during formal selection processes.

Both institutions are making progress towards their internal targets on staff diversity. Of the IMF’s 189 member countries, 148 were represented by staff as of end-April 2016. Hiring of nationals from underrepresented regions stood at 48 percent of all external hiring at the professional level for 2015. As a result, the share of professional staff from underrepresented regions amounted to 24.8 per cent as of 2016, and the share of woman managers increased to 23.8 per cent, close to the benchmark 25.7 per cent.

Nationals of the World Bank’s Part II countries (almost all developing countries, some of which are donors to IDA) accounted for 42 per cent of staff in management positions and women accounted for 38 per cent of staff in management positions, and for 43 per cent of full-time staff at professional grades.

International architecture for sustainable development

The year 2016 was the first full year of implementation of the Addis Ababa Action Agenda and other important agreements from 2015, including the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development and the Paris Climate Accords. The cluster on policy coherence provides reporting on measures taken by international financial institutions and norm setting bodies, as well as in-depth reporting on measures taken to improve United Nations system-wide functioning.

In 2016 the G20 group of countries directly addressed sustainable development and committed to further aligning its work with the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development to ensure that no one is left behind in the G20’s efforts to eradicate poverty, achieve sustainable development and build an inclusive and sustainable future for all. The G20 Action Plan on the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development, agreed at the G20 Hangzhou summit in September 2016, represented an important development in bringing together the universal goals set in the United Nations and the international economic coordination of the G20 countries.