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Integrating human rights in financing for development

Under core human rights treaties, States acting individually and collectively are obligated to mobilise and allocate the maximum available resources for the progressive realisation of economic, social and cultural rights, as well as the advancement of civil and political rights and the right to development.

To eradicate poverty, achieve the SDGS, and fulfil their human rights commitments, States and other stakeholders will need to cooperate at all levels to effectively mobilise all available resources in order to finance development that benefits all persons.


In 2015’s Addis Ababa Action Agenda, the outcome document of the Third International Conference on Financing for Development (FFD), OHCHR advocated a development financing framework that is consistent with existing human rights agreements, principles and obligations.

OHCHR’s Key Messages on Financing for Development and Human Rights highlight the essential obligations and responsibilities of relevant stakeholders and their implications for FFD.

The High Commissioner’s Open Letter on Human Rights in the Financing for Development Agenda and his Statement to the Third International Conference on Financing for Development emphasise that the ultimate objective of financing development should be a world in which resources are more equitably distributed and all persons enjoy freedom from fear and freedom from want.

At OHCHR’s side event to the Third International Conference on Financing for Development, Integrating Human Rights in Financing for Development, OHCHR examined:

  • Strengths and weaknesses of human rights considerations in the Addis Ababa Action Agenda
  • Long-term human rights implications of the Addis Ababa Action Agenda including its relevance to the post-2015 discussion
  • Private sector accountability for human rights and development
  • Existing efforts to integrate human rights in financing development and development partnerships.

The side event also featured a panel discussion that was opened and moderated by OHCHR.

The discussion highlighted links between human rights commitments, financing for development, and the broader development agenda in order to promote greater policy coherence and the realisation of all human rights for all persons. From the discussion, it was clear that human rights must be increasingly integrated in FFD and the realisation of human rights for all persons should be the central objective of and is critical to sustainable development.