AFRICA: Consideration of an urgent need to increase green finance progresses

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AFRICA: Consideration of an urgent need to increase green finance progresses©PiyasetShutterstock

Experts are calling on African countries to integrate higher costs into their policies to manage and prevent climate risks. The benefits of such an approach were presented at the international seminar on greening the African financial system, held from June 25 to 27, 2019, in Casablanca, Morocco.

African countries will generally need to integrate the environmental adaptation of practices into their economic policies. This is the main recommendation made by experts from 12 African countries, France, the United Kingdom, China, Mongolia, and Kazakhstan. Meeting from June 25 to 27, 2019 in Casablanca, the Moroccan capital, the experts of the international seminar on the greening of the African financial system, presented the benefits that African countries can derive in the development of green finance.

“Although opportunities on the continent are enormous in several sectors, such as infrastructure, agriculture, energy and others, Africa now attracts only 5% of international green financial flows,” said Ibrahimi, Managing Director of Casablanca Finance City Authority, in his opening speech.

However, the continent has many reasons to mobilise more climate funds. “First, green finance will stimulate the continent; second, it will allow Africa to move directly to green infrastructure, such as renewable energy; third, it will create business opportunities for financial institutions; fourth, it will protect the financial sector from climate and environmental risks,” said Dr. Ma Jun, Director of the Research Centre for Green Finance Development at Tsinghua University and Chairman of China’s Green Finance Committee.

Barely half of the climate finance needs are mobilized each year

The World Bank estimates that the daily amount of international financial flows allocated to climate in developing countries is $1 billion. An amount that represents only half of the amount needed to fight climate change. The Landscape of Climate Finance 2013 report states that with bold innovation and policies, the situation could improve.

It is undoubtedly because of the awareness of the importance of the private sector in climate finance that the Casablanca seminar raised other major issues. Best practices in green banking, the green bond market, the attractiveness of green finance through incentives, improved transparency and communication on environmental and climate information are among the few proposals made to encourage private investment in the climate.

This seminar is the third organised by Tsinghua University in China and the International Finance Corporation (IFC). It is part of the International Programme for the Emergence of Leaders in Green Finance (GFLP), launched in May 2018 by the two institutions. The next event will take place in Astana, Kazakhstan, in September 2019.

Boris Ngounou


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