Dr. Mahmoud Mohieldin, UN Climate Change High Level Champion for Egypt and UN Special Envoy on Financing 2030 Sustainable Development Agenda, said that financing climate projects in Africa should take into account the debt crises experienced by a number of countries, and the continent’s climate targets, mainly the adaptation activities.
This came during his participation in a session entitled “Unlocking Climate Finance Flows to African Projects” within the activities of Africa Climate Summit (ACS) taking place in Nairobi, Kenya, with the participation of Mills Schenk, Partner at Boston Consulting Group and head of the firm’s Nairobi office.
Mohieldin added that the Five Regional Roundtables Initiative launched by the Egyptian presidency of COP27 in collaboration with UN regional economic commissions and the HLCs last year answered the question of financiers about the existence of investable and bankable climate projects in different countries and regions, and how far these projects, if any, have the necessary financing and investment standards, including disclosure, transparency and their presence in a suitable business environment in general.
He explained that the initiative aimed to find investable and bankable projects that have the required standards so that governments, private sector and regional and international development partners can contribute to their financing and implementation. It also tried to find partnership models that bring all these parties together to contribute to financing and implementing these projects and help achieving their final goal.
He stated that the organizers of the initiative worked for two years to find projects and then link between their owners and the potential financiers.
Mohieldin stressed the need to stimulate the private sector participation in financing these projects and contribute more to environment and climate related action, as well as to maximize the role of IFIs and MDBs by adopting new policies for concessional financing that include low interest rates and long-term repayment snd grace periods, with the need to make concessional financing available to middle-income countries along with low-income countries.
“There is no contradiction between development finance and climate finance.” The climate champion said, explaining that the implementation of mitigation activities, as well as the activities contained in Sharm El Sheikh Adaptation Agenda, is an implementation of a number of SDGs that relate to providing energy sources, achieving food and water security, improving infrastructure, protecting forests and marine life, beside the contribution of climate action in fighting poverty in different societies and providing jobs.