Dr. Mahmoud Mohieldin, UN Climate Change High Level Champion for Egypt and UN Special Envoy on Financing 2030 Sustainable Development Agenda, said that It has become necessary to reform the global financing system and adopt new financing policies that contribute to providing sufficient, fair and efficient financing for development and climate action.
This came during his participation in a session entitled “Championing Climate and Development Priorities” within the events of OPEC Fund Development Forum 2023, that witnessed the participation of Dr. Abdulhamid Alkhalifa, OPEC Fund Director-General, Dr. Rania Al Mashat, Egypt Minister of International Cooperation, Mohammed Al Jadaan, Saudi Minister of Finance, Khalid Al Mabrouk, Libya Minister of Finance, and a big number of governments representatives, heads and officials of regional and international economic organizations and multilateral development banks.
“The current global financing system does not contribute properly to development and climate financing, which is insufficient, inefficient and unfair.” Mohieldin said, explaining that despite reaching halfway towards the 2030 Sustainable Development Goals, the paths of achieving some of these goals suffer from delaying or backtracking.
Mohieldin stressed the importance of mobilizing finance to accelerate action to achieve sustainable development goals, including the goal of confronting climate change in a frame of just transition, pointing in this context to the need to reduce dependency on debt to finance climate and development work in developing countries, strengthen local and national action to support and integrate with the international effort, and treat climate finance as a development finance, not a substitute for it.
The climate champion noted the need for international financial institutions and multilateral development banks to adopt new policies that help increasing capital and enhancing its efficiency in financing development and climate action.
Mohieldin pointed to the importance of strengthening the regional and local aspects of climate and development action, highlighting the practical results achieved by the five regional forums, launched by the Egyptian presidency of COP27 in cooperation with the United Nations regional economic commissions and the HLCs, by discussing more than 400 projects that have been shortlisted into about 120 investable, bankable and implementable climate and development projects during the first edition of the forums, while the second edition, in which the UAE presidency of COP28 is involved, aims to reach final agreements to finance and implement 10-15 projects before the launch of the Dubai conference.
With regard to the local dimension of development and climate action, Mohieldin said that the National Initiative for Smart Green Projects launched by Egypt is a pioneering model for localizing development and climate action, as it succeeded in drawing an investment map in all governorates of Egypt and involving all local parties and different community groups in implementing development and climate action.