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AfDB BOSS DR. ADESINA: Africa needs a lot of financing to tackle climate change

Dr. Akinwumi A. Adesina President, African Development Bank Group speaking at the Africa Climate Adaptation Summit, Rotterdam, Netherlands, September 5, 2022 (PHOTO/Courtesy)

Dr. Akinwumi A. Adesina President, African Development Bank Group speaking at the Africa Climate Adaptation Summit, Rotterdam, Netherlands, September 5, 2022 (PHOTO/Courtesy)

Your Excellencies,

I wish to thank you all for honoring the invitation from former UN Secretary General, Ban Ki Moon, Chairman of the Global Center on Adaptation (GCA), Prof. Patrick Verkooijen, CEO of GCA, and myself, to this Africa Climate Adaptation Summit.

I wish to thank Prime Minister Rutte for hosting us in Netherlands.

You are all here because you are friends of Africa!

Africa is facing three major challenges – the 3 C’s: Covid, Climate and Conflict. The solution to the 3 C’s is the same: 3 Fs – Finance, Finance, Finance.

Africa was still dealing with financing recovery from Covid-19 when conflict broke out as Russian invaded Ukraine, triggering soaring food prices and inflation.

To forestall potential food crisis in Africa from Russia’s war in Ukraine the African Development Bank announced on the 29th of May a $1.5 billion Africa Emergency Food Production Facility.

The facility, to support 20 million farmers, will provide access to climate resilient seeds for maize, wheat, rice and soybeans, and support production of 38 million metric tons of food, valued at $12 billion.

Approvals on the facility have been incredibly fast. Within 60 days, the Bank had approved $1.13 billion for operations in 24 countries, and we expect to reach 35 countries at the end of this month.

Your Excellencies,

Africa needs a lot of financing to tackle climate change.

The continent is warming up faster than any other region of the world, as predictions from the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change show that the critical global warming levels will be reached much earlier in Africa.

The effects will be devastating loss of crops, decimation of livestock populations and livelihoods of pastoralists; while child wasting will increase by 37% in West Africa, and 25% in East Africa. A one degree increase in temperature is also associated with a 11% greater risk of conflict in Africa, as it triggers weather related disasters and conflicts, with 4.3 million Africans already displaced due to climate change.

According to estimates from the African Development Bank, GDP losses per capita could be as high as 16-64% under high warming scenario.

In the face of all this deluge, Africa does not have the resources to tackle climate change. The continent receives only 3% of global climate financing. If this trend continues, Africa’s climate financing gap will reach $100 billion to $127 billion per year through 2030.

The current climate financing architecture is not meeting the needs of Africa. New estimates by the African Economic Outlook of the African Development Bank shows that Africa will need between 1.3 and 1.6 trillion dollars between 2020-2030, or $118 billion to $ 145 billion annually, to implement its commitments to the Paris Agreement and its nationally determined contributions.

The African Adaptation Acceleration Program (AAA-P) is Africa’s own program, supported by African Heads of State, to mobilize more resources for climate change, to advance the objectives of the African Adaptation Initiative.

The African Development Bank and the Global Center on Adaptation are mobilizing $25 billion for this program – the largest ever climate adaptation effort globally – to which the African Development Bank has already committed $12.5 billion.

The AAA-P has an upstream facility at the GCA and a downstream facility at the African Development Bank. The upstream facility which needs capitalization of $250 million will help to mainstream solutions on climate adaptation. The downstream facility at the Bank, to be capitalized at $1.75 billion, will help leverage additional adaptation finance by a factor of 4 times, to deliver $7 billion of additional adaptation finance.

GCA and the African Development Bank are already showing very good results on the AAA-P. The AAA-P upstream facility at the GCA has helped to generate $3 billion of mainstreamed climate adaptation investments by the African Development Bank, from agriculture, to energy, transport, water, and sanitation.

I wish to thank the UK for its delivery on its promise of GBP 20 million for the upstream facility at the GCA, which has been fully disbursed.

We now need full financing of the $12.5 billion for the AAA-P.

Your Excellencies,

The African Development Fund’s 16th replenishment now presents such a unique opportunity! Never have the stakes been so high for Africa’s low income and fragile states that depend on the ADF. Nine out of the 10 countries most vulnerable to climate change in the world are in sub-Saharan Africa and all of them are ADF countries. Yet, ADF countries do not have access to global climate finance.

To change this, the ADF has introduced a Climate Action Window. This window is hoping to mobilize $4 billion to $13 billion for climate adaptation for ADF countries. This will be used to support 20 million farmers with access to climate resilient agricultural technologies, access of 20 million farmers and pastoralists to weather-indexed crop insurance, reviving 1 million hectares of degraded land, and provision of renewable energy for about 9.5 million people.

Commitments made by developed countries to provide $100 billion annually in climate finance for developing countries are long overdue.

Your Excellencies,

Africa can no longer wait.

This is the time to support the African Adaptation Acceleration Program.

This is the time to support ADF 16th replenishment.

This is the time to support the Climate Action Window of ADF-16.

Your Excellencies,

Present here today are action shapers, from heads of state and government to the United Nations, African Union Commission, European Union Commission, to development ministers, to heads of major global institutions, from the IMF, WTO, bilateral agencies, multilateral development banks, and many more.

If there was ever a group that can shape success, and deliver climate adaptation for Africa, it is the leaders in this room today.

You are doers!

So, let’s rise and deliver for Africa.

Let’s secure our common future.

Let’s put up the resources for climate adaptation in Africa.

The past got us to where we are, now let us create a new path, a new future, our common future, where every African can thrive in a climate secure world.

Thank you very much.

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