• Tuesday, July 23, 2024
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BusinessDay

AfDB support for climate smart initiatives swells to $2.1bn

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In recognition of the impact of climate change in the continent and as part of efforts to encourage African countries to go green, the Africa Development Bank (AfDB) has increased its support through the Climate Investment Funds (CIF) with an additional $500 million bringing its total support to $2.1 billion. The new addition which was stated in the bank’s 2014 Annual Report Financing Change also shows that the funds will be channelled to the execution of 16 projects already underway in 11 African nations. In a statement obtained by BusinessDay, the bank says the exponential growth in investment in the outgone year has also seen it include one regional and 25 national investment plans, with an additional nine poor countries being funded for renewable energy solutions. According to the statement, about 34 percent of the $8.1 billion global CIF portfolio goes to Africa.

“Through its CIF portfolio, the AfDB supports countries to implement projects in Investment Plans through the CIF’s Clean Technology Fund (CTF), Forest Investment Program (FIP), Pilot Program for Climate Resilience (PPCR), and Programme for Scaling Up Renewable Energy in Low Income Countries (SREP),” the statement adds. Also, the latest report reveals five areas of growth in the four programmes in 2014. First, the portfolio moved into full implementation in the 16 original AfDB CIF Investment Plans and in some cases to a second stage of development, such as in Concentrated Solar Power in Morocco and geothermal in Kenya. Second, it added newcomer pilots including Benin, Ghana, Lesotho, Madagascar, Malawi, Rwanda, Sierra Leone, Uganda and Zambia under SREP. Third, it helped countries move forward in efforts to engage the private sector at the local and national levels, including through innovative private sector projects in Kenya, Mali, Ghana and Mozambique. Fourth, it facilitated innovative financial solutions such as financial intermediation through local commercial banks and long-term debt financing in local currency.

Lastly, it moved into an integrated approach to mitigation and adaptation in the forest and agriculture sectors through the FIP. “Through the AfDB CIF portfolio, we are beginning to witness countries seeing economic transformation take place first- hand by incorporating low-carbon and climate-resilient solutions as an integral part of their ongoing business of development,” Kurt Lonsway, AfDB’s Environment and Climate Change manager was quoted to have said in the statement. “Our role at AfDB is to provide climate finance in such a way that we effectively help countries create bankable climate-smart projects. In 2014, our work through the CIF with the other Multilateral Development Banks helped move that work substantially forward,” Lonsway added.