UNESCO and Flanders

UNESCO and Flanders signed their first cooperation agreement in 1998. It is one of the rare agreements concluded between UNESCO and a sub-state entity. From 1999, in the framework of the cooperation agreement, Flanders decided to create two Funds-in-trust in order to provide a specific financial support to UNESCO’s projects and programmes.

  • The Flanders UNESCO Science Trust Fund (FUST)

The Flanders UNESCO Science Trust Fund (FUST) supports UNESCO’s activities in the field of Science. It financed, in particular, projects within the International Hydrological Programme (IHP) and the Intergovernmental Oceanographic Commission (IOC). Through the FUST, Flanders contributes to the scientific and technological capacity building in developing countries.

For more information regarding the FUST and the projects financed, please visit: fust.iode.org/

  • The General Flemish Trust Fund (FUT)

Until 2010, the general Flemish Trust Fund (FUT) covered the others UNESCO’s fields of competence. Projects were developed in the fields of Education for All, HIV/AIDS education, cultural diversity, the protection and preservation of cultural heritage and Communication. The activities carried out focused on capacity building and the construction of a knowledge society.

On the 2nd November 2010, Minister-President of the Flemish Government, Kris Peeters, and UNESCO Director-General, Irina Bokova, signed a new General Trust Fund agreement, which brings modification regarding targeted areas of action. 

From now, activities financed through the Fund, focus on protecting world heritage and intangible heritage, more particularly in Southern Africa. Flanders’s support may take the form of project financing, secondment of experts and Contributions to UNESCO Special Accounts and UNESCO Category I Centres and Institutes.



The Director-General of UNESCO, Irina Bokova, and Kris Peeters, Minister – President of the Government of Flanders, after signing an agreement establishing a Trust Fund in support of UNESCO’s activities in the field of heritage, on 2 November 2010. © UNESCO/Michel Ravassard

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