The African Development Bank Group intends to double its climate finance amount to $25 billion, over the next five years, to support countries to build their resilience against climate change.
According to the Vice President for Power, Energy, Climate, and Green growth of the Group, Dr Kevin Karuiki, the fund could be accessed for both adaptation and mitigation climate actions.
He made this known at a virtual press conference held yesterday ahead of the group’s 2022 Annual Meetings to be hosted by Ghana from May 23 to 27 May in a hybrid (online and in-person) format.
The Annual Meetings which attract about 3,000 representatives of member countries, business, civil society, think tanks, and academia, enable the Group to take stock of its progress with stakeholders and discuss key issues concerning Africa’s development.
This year’s meetings, on the theme “Achieving Climate Resilience and a Just Energy Transition for Africa”, would discuss the nature of the support member countries need from global development partners, as well as the estimated cost of building resilience and a just energy transition for their economies.
Dr. Karuiki, who was answering a question on the group’s climate action support, said over the last five years, the group had spent 13 billion dollars on climate actions.
“We will double that amount to 25 billion dollars over the next five years, he said.
Dr Karuiki said because Africa’s interest had been on climate adaptation, the Group had focused on adaptation programmes with 50 per cent or more of its climate finance amount going into that area.
To further support adaptation measures, he said the group, would mobilize additional 25 million dollars to support efforts by the countries.
However, he said, the funds would be made available to countries that are able to justify the need and present well throughout policies and plans for use.
Touching on agriculture improvement, the Director of Agriculture and Agro-industry, Dr Martin Fregene, said the Group was putting together a 1.5million dollar emergency response to help member countries to combat sharp increases in fertile prices occasioned by COVID-19 and the Ukraine/ Russian conflict.
He said the group would also engage with countries on measures to solve fundamental problems in the sector including ineffective policies, inadequate food storage systems, and deplorable roads.
The Secretary-General of the Group, Prof. Vincent Nmehielle, said as part of measures to help the climate efforts, the group would not finance any coal project due to its environmental impact but would support the gas projects as the energy transition takes place.
On the upcoming event, he said, the governors, who represent the institution’s 54 African and 27 non-regional member countries, would hold a high-level dialogue with the top-level executives of the group on how to boost funding for climate adaptation and related matters.
He said the meetings would be formally opened on May 24 while as part of the meetings thematic knowledge event would be held to discuss various sub-themes.
The 2022 African Development Bank Group Annual Meetings would be the 57th Annual Meeting of the Board of Governors of the Bank Group and the 48th Annual Meeting of the African Development Fund, the concessional arm of the Bank Group.
BY JONATHAN DONKOR