France Further Supports Roadmap Multi-Partner Trust Fund with New Contribution
As one of the key contributors of the Western Balkans Small Arms and Light Weapons (SALW) Control Roadmap Multi-Partner Trust Fund (MPTF), France has provided a new contribution worth 400,000 euros to this pooled fund.
"France is a longstanding supporter of the MPTF, an additional tool established at the Paris Ministerial meeting in December 2018 to help mobilise specific new assistance programmes in the context of the Western Balkans SALW Control Roadmap 2024. We welcome the work done so far by UNODC and UNDP, supported by the active and efficient secretariat role of SEESAC, and are looking forward to seeing the third upcoming call for projects for which our additional financial support will contribute,” H. E. Jean-Claude Brunet, Ambassador-at-large on transnational criminal threats and the fight against the illicit trafficking of SALW, said on this occasion.
He added that highlights of progress made so far are especially the criminal justice training linked to firearms trafficking, implementation of the UN Firearms Protocol, strengthening of customs controls, as well as organisational reforms for more efficient border checks or prevention of diversion of SALW for example.
“We greatly welcome donor support by other States. France, together with Germany and the EU, sees MPTF's role as key, together with other assistance programs led especially by OSCE - which France also supports- or SEESAC with EU funds,” Ambassador Brunet highlighted.
“Our Western Balkans partners are making significant progress towards stronger regional and European integration. They deserve our continued support in helping us to create a shared security partnership in the region. With the war in Ukraine, we see increased risks today, requiring our fullest attention. At the upcoming Regional coordination meeting of the 2024 SALW Control Roadmap, we will take stock of progress so far and exchange with our partners and all implementing organisations to identify priorities for action in the next phase ahead,” the Ambassador concluded.
The Multi-Partner Trust Fund supports a donor-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 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 22.2 million US dollars.
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 to it. Thus far, the Trust Fund has supported 14 projects implemented by the Participating UN Organisations across the Western Balkans.