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Scientific evidence shows that African economies are already reeling from the devastating effects of climate change, further exacerbating their development challenges. Of the 10 countries in the world that are most threatened by climate change, seven are in Africa.

The 53rd Annual Meeting of the African Development Bank (AfDB), held in Busan, Korea, saw the formation of the Africa Financial Alliance for Climate Change (AFAC) in response to this situation. The Alliance brings together Africa’s financial sector, including Ministers of Finance, Central Banks, insurance and reinsurance companies, sovereign wealth and pension funds, stock exchanges as well as global thought leaders to mobilise climate finance for Africa. It also hopes to come up with concrete proposals to mobilise domestic and international finance for climate-resilient development in Africa. 

AfDB to fund waste to energy plant in Kenya“The establishment of the African Financial Alliance for Climate Change is a call for us to stand together to mobilise climate finance at scale to meet the needs in Africa,” says Akinwumi Adesina, President of AfDB.

The international community has pledged to mobilise $100 billion in climate finance per annum by 2020 to support adaptation and mitigation projects in developing countries. However, of the $820 billion in climate finance flows for 2015 and 2016, only $16 billion was for Africa. This represents a mere 2% of the total.

“The financing needs to meet the ambitions of the Paris Climate Agreement in Africa are enormous. The implementation of Africa’s Nationally Determined Contributions (NDCs) would require investments of at least $2.7 trillion for mitigation and another $488 billion for adaptation by 2030,” Adesina told the AfDB meeting.

The 2015 Paris Climate Agreement calls on countries to increase their ability to adapt to the adverse impacts of climate change without threatening food production, and make financial flows consistent with a pathway towards low greenhouse gas emissions and climate-resilient development. Adesina pointed out that the formation of AFAC could lead to a Decarbonisation Index for Africa.

“The idea of having the Alliance is a fantastic one, because we recognise that the world is also looking to us. While Africa is not the primary cause of the climate change that we see in the word today, we are the continent where the impact is very great, and the world is not as prepared to finance us to take care of this impact. We can’t let it go because it is our people who are suffering,” says Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala, Chair of the Africa Risk Capacity (ARC).

“The Alliance is a fundamental step towards meeting the climate change challenge in Africa. There has to be an African solution to the challenge that we face and this initiative presents the opportunity to mobilise that,” adds Howard Bamsey, CEO of the Green Climate Fund.

The Africa Financial Alliance for Climate Change will be launched on the margins of the Africa Investment Forum to be held from 7 to 9 November 2018.

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