UN Climate Change High-Level Champion for Egypt and UN Special Envoy on Financing 2030 Sustainable Development Agenda Mahmoud Mohieldin
The project covers fields of climate action priorities such as transportation, energy, agriculture, desertification and water management, Mohieldin added during the closing session of the forum.
“The forum is well organised by ESCWA, Egypt's presidency of COP27 and [high-level champions (HLCs)], while [Glasgow Financial Alliance for Net Zero (GFANZ)], investment banks and development partners participated, and this reflected the interest of all stakeholders to get involved in climate action,” he added.
The forum in Beirut is the fourth in a series of regional meetings organised by Egypt's presidency of COP27, UN regional commissions, HLCs and GFANZ to prepare for the COP27 in Sharm El-Sheikh from 6 to 18 November.
Egypt, the host of COP27, had previously announced the launch of the five regional roundtables in Addis Ababa, Bangkok, Santiago, Beirut, and Geneva to catalyse climate investments in different climate sectors.
Geneva is set to host the last roundtable on 20 September.
"Climate financing and encouraging investors and finance entities to participate requires the existence of applicable and bankable projects; that is the goal of the five regional roundtables initiative," Mohieldin said.
"It is necessary for Arab governments to link public budgets to [sustainable development goals (SDGs)] as public finance can be considered the cornerstone of financing development and climate action including adaptation measures," Mohieldin pointed out.
Climate financing, he noted, should take the shape of partnerships and investments rather than debts, especially with having feasible projects on the table.
He explained that debts could represent investing opportunities in case the Arab states reached deals with lenders to activate debt swaps, referring also to the importance of blended finance as a method to implement climate projects.
At the end of his speech, Mohieldin confirmed the importance of investing in development and climate action as an investment in human capital in order to build capacity and enhance the skills of dealing with new technologies that development and climate projects depend on.
Hopes are pinned on COP27 to turn climate-related pledges into action to help facilitate the transition to green energy in order to reduce harmful greenhouse gas emissions and adapt to climate change as per the Paris Agreement.
The Paris Agreement – adopted at COP21 and signed by over 190 states including Egypt – came into effect in 2016 with the aim of limiting the rise in temperatures to 1.5 degrees Celsius.
Climate finance has been debated at every COP meeting since, as developed countries have failed to meet their promise to mobilise $100 billion annually by 2020 to help developing nations with mitigation and adaptation measures.