Finance in Common Summit – Hear our call, feminist finance for all!


450 public banks meet from 9-12 of November 2020 at the Finance in Common (FiC) Summit, organised by France with the UN and other international organisations. These development banks and export credit agencies control over $2 trillion USD in public money annually, feminists are calling for them to make strong commitments to human rights, gender equality and environmental sustainability.

The summit aims to reach commitments for long-term sustainability, that will support Covid-19 recovery, and have a positive impact on planet and societies. It aims to “support common action for climate and the UN Sustainable Development Goals,” as well as contribute to the 2021 UN Climate Change Conference (COP26), UN Biodiversity Conference (COP15) and Generation Equality Forums on gender equality.”

Together with other feminist networks, we see the urgent need to make public finance work for – and not against – women’s rights and a healthy planet, so this initiative is long overdue.

The Summit is expected to adopt the “Paris Development Banks’ statement on Gender Equality and Women’s Empowerment” in which banks will commit to gender-responsive climate and biodiversity projects. They will also commit to increase funding for feminist organisations, set targets to increase gender-responsive projects in the bank’s portfolios, and strengthen capacity on gender in their own institutions.

During the Summit, proposed gender-measures will be discussed at three events on November 12, see agenda here, where specific examples of investing in gender, climate and food-security will be looked at.

Women and girls in all their diversity, in particular women of colour and indigenous women, are disproportionately impacted by unsustainable investments in extractive industries (oil, uranium) and industrial agriculture and livestock, leading to deforestation. Banks need to ensure a just and equitable transition away from fossil fuel related activities, while securing essential services provision.

Strengthen the statement

We call for further strengthening of the proposed statement on gender equality and women’s rights and empowerment, by including the statement that:

  • all banks should commit to a full divestment from fossil fuels and related industries such as plastics and pesticides from their portfolios as climate change disproportionately has a negative impact on women, girls, indigenous peoples and local communities.
  • all banks should commit to audit their past and ongoing portfolios on the potential negative impacts on women and girls (in all their diversity) in the countries and regions targeted.
  • all banks should set concrete gender-targets and monitor these targets, based on the example of the gender-marker methodology, aiming at all investment portfolios being gender-transformative and environmentally sustainable, meaning a 100% target. It makes little sense to have only a certain percentage of programmes and investments being gender- and climate-just, if the other part of the banks’ investments continue to destroy the livelihoods of women and girls.
  • All banks should have institutional gender measures and strategies that redistribute power and resources to women in all their diversity, including through the access, ownership, use and control of land, despite traditional gender roles having kept many women from having access to assets as collateral.
  • All banks should support the process of international tax transparency and cooperation and support tax on financial transactions

Feminist finance

This brief on the Finance in Common Summit tells you all you need to know about the summit – what are the risks and why is it important? It also outlines entry points for advocacy on gender equality as well as explains why feminist finance is important.

Brief in EnglishBref en français