NAIROBI, Kenya, June 20, 2023 /PRNewswire/ --
COP28 President-Delegate, Dr. Sultan Al Jaber, met H.E. William Ruto, President of the Republic of Kenya, along with energy ministers and leaders from other African nations, at the Africa Energy Forum in Nairobi, where he emphasized the importance of making climate finance more available, accessible, and affordable to enable countries in the continent to achieve their clean energy potential.
In a joint statement with the President-Designate, President Ruto commended the UAE, its leadership and the COP Presidency on their long-standing support for sustainable development and climate action. Kenya and COP28 will jointly champion actions to triple installed renewable energy capacity by 2030, and will cooperate on policy and scaling finance.
A joint working group has also been launched through the Africa Climate Summit and COP28 to focus on a just energy transition and unlocking climate finance to accelerate green growth in Africa.
With abundant clean energy resources, including wind, solar, hydro and geothermal sources, and precious metals, Africa "has the potential to emerge as a hub for renewable energies, and a significant driver of clean growth for the world," the President-Designate said. "But one major obstacle stands in its way. And that is a lack of available, accessible and affordable finance."
Clean energy investment in Africa represents only 2 percent of what is invested globally and less than 10 percent of the 120 billion dollars a year that is the "baseline requirement," Dr. Al Jaber said. "We need to be candid about the issues and determined to fix them," he stated.
The President-Designate repeated calls for developed nations to meet their historic commitment of delivering $100 billion a year in climate finance for developing nations, and reiterated the need for reform of international financial institutions (IFIs) and multilateral development banks (MDBs).
"We know that the current international financial architecture is not fit for purpose. IFIs and MDBs are not distributing concessional finance anywhere near quickly enough," he said. "Reform is urgently needed," and if this is not possible in time, "we must explore new mechanisms for lowering risk and massively expanding the flow of private investment to build a pipeline of bankable, sustainable clean energy projects."
Harmonizing standards for voluntary carbon markets could also help Africa to attract capital, while countries should also look at supportive policies and regulations to "help develop a favorable investment climate for the private sector," the President-Designate said.
Dr. Al Jaber hailed Kenya's success in providing 80 percent of its electricity from renewable energy sources. "That didn't happen by accident," he said. "It happened because visionary government policies combined with smart investments met practical-minded people of action." Kenya will be a regional champion in the drive to triple renewable energy capacity by 2030, the President-Designate said.
"Africa's potential as a clean energy giant is massive," Dr. Al Jaber said. "Developing that potential will require political will, visionary ambition and lots of capital. Some of this is already happening through evidence-based energy transition plans. The AFDB is spearheading innovative, blended public and private finance solutions to expand clean growth through Africa 50. And the UAE has deployed over US$12 billion in development and renewable projects across Africa through public/private partnerships."
During his meeting with President Ruto, Dr. Al Jaber discussed adaptation
Dr. Al Jaber also attended a ministerial roundtable on the energy transition, attended by ministers from more than 15 nations, and took part in a townhall discussion with representative of youth, indigenous peoples', and civil society.
In one of his visit's highlights, Dr. Al Jaber met young social entrepreneurs from M-KOPA, a company developing innovative financial products that are helping home-grown, clean tech businesses get off the ground.
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