WASHINGTON, United States (CMC) — More than 30 developing countries, including those in the Caribbean, are calling for a recapitalization of the Climate Investment Funds (CIF) in response to the worsening impact of climate change and sweeping finance gaps for low-carbon development.
The calls have come as the International Monetary Fund (IMF) and the World Bank get ready for their annual spring meetings that begin later this week.
In a joint statement, ministers representing countries on the front lines of climate change, have said that while the CIF is, and should remain, a central multilateral institution in the global climate finance architecture, addressing mass migration, increased poverty rates, and other climate impacts requires “significant investment” from CIF and its partners in areas spanning resilience, energy transition and access, land use management, and sustainable cities.
Observers say mobilizing finance for climate action is a core development challenge and a multi-trillion dollar economic opportunity and closing the expansive gap in climate finance is vital to supporting developing countries in meeting their sustainable development objectives, avoiding global climate catastrophe, and seizing the rewards of a new climate economy.
It is also a priority area of UN Secretary-General António Guterres’ Climate Summit in September of this year.
“Now is the time, not tomorrow, not next week, to direct all our energy, all our ingenuity, and all our resources toward reining in this crisis,” said the head of CIF, Mafalda Duarte, making reference to the joint statement by the developing countries that acknowledged unequivocally that CIF is an essential means to this end.
The countries have praised CIF’s tried-and-tested approach to climate finance, stressing the need to harness its comparative advantages and those of complementary multilateral climate funds, including the Green Climate Fund, to drive low-carbon and resilient development where it is needed most: in low and middle-income countries.
With more than a decade in operation, CIF financing is unlocking over US$55 billion in climate change-related investments across 72 countries, resulting in hundreds of transformational programs and projects that would have been impossible without CIF’s below-market rates and patient, risk-absorbing capital.
Worldwide, CIF-funded initiatives are supporting 26.5 gigawatts in clean power capacity, improved energy access for 8.5 million people and over 300,000 businesses, strengthened climate resilience for 45 million people and 44,000 businesses, and 36 million hectares of more sustainable forests.
CIF partnerships are helping clean energy industries in several countries, creating jobs and hope for enterprising young people across emerging economies. In addition, the lessons generated from more than 300 CIF-supported ventures are continually setting the standard for stakeholder engagement, governance, transparency, and accountability for similar financing institutions in the public and private sectors.
“The climate decisions we make now will have lasting implications for our generation and those to come. We face a closing window of opportunity to enact the unprecedented transitions in land use, industry, energy, transport, and urban development needed to build a more resilient world.
“With adequate financing, CIF can continue pushing the frontier of climate finance around the world, serving as a partner of choice for driving change in markets, technologies, institutions, and behaviors. CIF stands ready to continue contributing to a cleaner, more prosperous, and more sustainable future for all,” said Duarte.