The Green Climate Fund Engages Antigua and Barbuda’s Private Sector on Financing Opportunities for Implementing the Climate Change Paris Agreement
On Tuesday 12th December 2017, representatives of the Green Climate Fund met with members of the private sector in Antigua and Barbuda at a luncheon hosted by their Excellencies Sir Rodney Williams and Lady Sandra Williams at Government House.
The Green Climate Fund, or “GCF”, is a global fund that provides climate financing to the private sector on a concessional basis. The GCF’s financial instruments include equity, guarantees and insurance, to help achieve the global goal of the Paris Agreement, which is to promote development that is low in carbon emissions and is resilient to the impacts of climate change – including hurricanes, droughts and floods.
The Green Climate Fund Private Sector Luncheon brought together trade, commerce and energy associations, insurance providers, Credit Unions, national banks and domestic branches of international banks, financial regulators, the hotel and tourism association, business owners and entrepreneurs, within Antigua and Barbuda. The objective was to engage the private sector and identify financing and investment opportunities that will directly support climate resilient development.
During the discussions stakeholders mentioned a number of areas that were of particular interest to them.
The Hotel & Tourism Association stated their interest in how hoteliers can access financing through the GCF. Some hotels have already implemented green initiatives such as the Green Globe Certification, and are now ready to market themselves as green hotels and Antigua and Barbuda as a green destination.
Renewable Energy (RE) service providers noted that they have challenges accessing financing and insurance from local financial institutions to expand their businesses, and hoped that this is an area that the GCF could be of assistance.
Representatives from insurance companies emphasized that with climate change on the rise and expected adverse weather conditions, there would be disruptions to energy and water supply, and extensive property and infrastructure damage. The insurance sector has been discussing new market products to reduce premiums for homeowners to climate proof their homes and businesses.
This Luncheon is one in a series of initiatives led by the Department of Environment to increase the awareness of Antigua and Barbuda’s private sector that there are opportunities to invest in low emission climate technology and to build resilience of homes and business, preparing for more extreme climate impacts. Complementary to this, the Department of Environment is currently recruiting a Private Sector Readiness Consultant to assist the private sector to develop bankable funding and investment proposals.
The Sustainable Island Resource Framework Fund (SIRF Fund) is one of the initiatives designed to channel concessional loans to home and business owners to adapt to the effects of climate change. This is one of the climate priorities outlined in the country’s Nationally Determined Contribution to the climate change agenda.
Funding from the Green Climate Fund is accessed through accredited entities. To date, entities accredited in the Caribbean region are the Caribbean Development Bank, the CARICOM Climate Change Center (5Cs), and the Antigua and Barbuda Department of Environment. Other entities soon to be accredited are the OECS Commission, and the Grenada Development Bank. Any banking entity in Antigua and Barbuda that is interested in becoming accredited is invited to contact the Department of Environment. Entities such as local banks are encouraged to consider accreditation.
Next steps for accessing concessional financing for local businesses is that the Department of Environment, as an accredited entity, will continue to reach out to the private sector to identify and refine the types of projects eligible for GCF Funding. In early 2018, the Department of Environment will be hosting targeted meetings with the private sector. To keep up with what’s happening, please email the Department of Environment at DOE@ab.gov.ag or call 462-4625 with your contact information to be placed on the Department’s Private Sector Mailing List. Additional information will be disseminated.
For more information:
Previously Approved GCF Projects http://www.greenclimate.fund/what-we-do/projects-programmes
About the GCF Private Sector Facility http://www.greenclimate.fund/what-we-do/private-sector-facility
Antigua and Barbuda’s SIRF Fund http://environment.gov.ag/sirf
Antigua and Barbuda’s Climate Change Nationally Determined Contribution http://www4.unfccc.int/submissions/INDC/Published%20Documents/Antigua%20and%20Barbuda/1/INDC_Antigua_Barbuda.pdf
From left to right: Diann Black-Layne, Director of the Department of Environment; Mitch Carpen, GCF Risk Manager; Sergio Pombo, Senior Advisor to the GCF Private Sector Facility; Lady Williams; and Ayaan Adam, Director of the GCF Private Sector Facility