NewsSweden steadfast in its support to the Western Balkans Multi-Partner Trust Fund

SALW news pic 22 FEB 2024

For the fifth consecutive year, Sweden reaffirms its support to the Western Balkans SALW Control Roadmap Multi-Partner Trust Fund with a new funding contribution in the amount of SEK 5 million. 

Since its establishment in 2019, Sweden has contributed to the Fund with SEK 32 million in total, or approximately US$ 3.37 million, which makes Sweden one of the principal donors and partners to the Trust Fund, in its overall efforts to support initiatives for a safer Western Balkans region.

“Sweden remains committed to supporting a peaceful, inclusive and more secure Western Balkans region.  Strengthened regional cooperation and confidence-building efforts are essential to this end. We recognize the Multi-Partner Trust Fund as an important tool in further enhancing the regional cooperation on arms control and prevention of arms-enabled violence and crime. We see projects funded by the Trust Fund ultimately contributing to enhanced safety and security in the region and in Europe as a whole, and we are happy to support these efforts”, said Ms. Ann-Sofie Nilsson, Head of the Department for Disarmament, Non-Proliferation and Export Control at the Ministry for Foreign Affairs of Sweden.

The Multi-Partner Trust Fund supports a donor- and jurisdiction-coordinated approach to the implementation of the Roadmap for a sustainable solution to the illegal possession, misuse and trafficking of SALW and their ammunition in the Western Balkans. It strengthens coordination, planning and communication among all partners, fosters collaboration, and reduces risks to governments and financial contributors.

Established in March 2019 by the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) and the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC) as Participating UN Organisations, the Trust Fund has benefitted from a strong cooperation with Germany and France, as the initiators of the Roadmap, that were soon joined by the United Kingdom, Sweden, Norway, and the Netherlands. Due to the generosity and commitment of these donors, the Trust Fund mobilised contributions exceeding USD 27.5 million.

Thus far, the Trust Fund’s Steering Committee approved for funding 24 projects in support of the Roadmap implementation, with a value of US$ 25.4 million. The projects are implemented by the Participating UN Organisations, UNDP and UNODC, across the Western Balkans region. UNDP SEESAC functions as the Secretariat of the Trust Fund and is responsible for the overall coordination and monitoring of the Trust Fund, providing technical, management, planning and programming support.

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