$2.8 billion in climate finance accessed last decade

By Ivamere Nataro 10 May 2019, 12:00AM

Pacific Islands Forum members have accessed US$1.1 billion (T$2.8 billion) in climate finance over the last decade, of which 48 per cent was from bilateral sources and 52 per cent multilateral sources.

This was highlighted during the Forum Economic Ministers Meeting (F.E.M.M.) that concluded in Suva, Fiji yesterday.  

“While the F.E.M.M. has historically focused on increasing access to international climate and disaster risk finance, Forum Economic Ministers underscored the importance of increasing the focus on the ‘effectiveness’ of climate finance,” said the Forum Secretariat in a statement last night. 

“The influx of additional finance has had significant implications on Ministries of Finance, including their expanded role in development decisions and related, increased administrative burden.

“A large proportion of these additional funds are not channelled through the central agency systems, and in some cases, negatively impact implementation effectiveness and policy coherence.”

Given the increasing economic, social, and environmental risks, F.E.M.M. noted that it is crucial to evaluate the effectiveness of climate finance modalities, systems, and implementation results to date to ensure there is a clear understanding of the progress that has been made.

“This is also important because global climate finance flows are expected to increase from the current estimated US$60 billion (T$158.370 billion) per year to the agreed global commitment of US$100 billion (T$263.950) per year by 2020.

“Forum Economic Ministers highlighted in their discussion that efforts to fully track the effectiveness of climate finance remain in their infancy in the region. Revised and robust national financial management and planning systems are required to increase tracking capability. 

“Revised F.I.C.s national systems will help them invest more strategically in initiatives that build resilience. The F.E.M.M. also noted the concept of the ‘triple-dividend’ of resilience as a conceptual tool for evaluating the effectiveness and efficiency of resilient investments.”

The statement said Forum Economic Ministers: 

a. Requested the Forum Secretariat to work with partners to assist with strengthening F.I.Cs national capacity for resilient investments through an approach guided by criteria of the ‘triple dividend of resilience’ concept and based on the findings of the P.C.C.F.A.F reports;

b. Agreed to establish a revised approach for assessing P.F.M. systems through expanding the current P.E.F.A. diagnostic outputs to include indicators that assess expenditure effectiveness of climate change finance; 

c. Tasked the Forum Secretariat to work with P.F.T.A.C., Member countries, and partners to progress the work outlined in paragraph17(b) and provide an update to the 2020 F.E.M.M;

d. Agreed to scale up regional and national efforts to track the effectiveness of climate finance flows in order to increase the responsiveness, agility, and transparency of government service delivery and tasked the Forum Secretariat to support this regional effort through the development, provision, and deployment of relevant tools (such as Climate Budget Tracking) as well as targeted assistance for national P.F.M. system reform; and

e. Agreed that the Forum Secretariat will continue to work with partners such as P.I.P.S.O. and national Chambers of Commerce to expand the opportunities, capacity, and resources required to accelerate the delivery of resilient development priorities in keeping with the 2018 F.E.M.M. decision.

The Ministers also noted the significant progress made on the Pacific Resilience Facility (P.R.F.) following its endorsement by Forum Economic Ministers and Forum Leaders, in 2018. 

They acknowledged the funding support of Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade (Australia) to progress the F.E.M.M. decision related to the P.R.F; Discussed and noted progress-to-date on the following: (1) Purpose and Objectives; (2) Point of Difference and niche focus; (3) Typology and/or character; (4) Governance and domicile arrangements; (5) Capitalisation; (6) Contribution Policy; (7) Allocation Policy; and (8) Financial Products; and welcomed the opportunity for further consultation with Forum member countries and development partners.

The Ministers also looked at further developing the proposal before the Special Forum Economic Ministers Meeting to be held in July 2019 at the Forum Secretariat in Suva, to decide on the immediate and medium-term steps for the proposed owned and led P.R.F. initiative of forum members.

By Ivamere Nataro 10 May 2019, 12:00AM

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