BOAD invites itself to finance green projects

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Good news for environmental advocates. In fact, the West African Development Bank (BOAD) is committed to mobilizing, every year, 100 billion CFA francs, for the financing of green projects. This was announced by the head of the climate Finance Division in this institution, Ibrahim Traoré, at a workshop in Dakar, the Senegalese capital on 2 October 2018.

In clear terms, the West African Bank is committed to accompanying BOAD's "strategy and commitment to climate finance".  A key player in the process of financing the economies of the countries of the subregion and, in particular, the Member States of the West African economic and Monetary Union (UEMOA), the West African Development Bank (BOAD) wants to play its part in the the fight against climate change. "You can invest in roads, dams, etc. But if behind all this there are floods, activities that cause global warming, it annihilates all the efforts we are making for the development of our States. The climate is, in fact, linked to the economy and development. All the solutions that are made there are economical, says the head of the climate Finance Division within the BOAD, Ibrahim Traoré.

The institution undertakes to put 100 billion, per year, for the financing of green projects. Resources to be accredited to the Global Environment Facility (GEF) and the Green climate fund. For the moment, Mr Traoré indicates that the commitments and projects already approved by his institution at the climate fund level are estimated between ' 45 and 50 billion CFA francs '. An amount mobilized in the form of donations.

In fact, the head of the AfDB's climate Finance Division stresses that declining agricultural yields and demographic growth will exert additional pressure on the "already fragile" food production system. "In this context, the experts report that if the current situation persists, Africa will only be able to support 13% of its food needs by 2050. At the present time, some 240 million Africans are already suffering from hunger. By then, it will suffice to increase from 1.2 ° to 1.9 ° C to increase the number of undernourished Africans between 25 and 95%, he said.

The challenge of mobilizing resources

However, the Director and head of the AfDB resident mission, Yoro Diakité, stresses that the mobilization of appropriate resources for climate finance remains a challenge for Senegal and other WAEMU countries. "In order to respond to this thorous concern, BOAD, in its capacity as a development financing institution of the countries of the Union, has set up a 2015-2019 strategy. This, by setting up funds in the form of grants or concessional loans, informs Mr. Diakité. For Senegal, the objective with this commitment is, in its view, to support the country so that it can fulfil its commitments in relation to the Paris climate agreement and the 17 sustainable development goals (Sdgs).

For its part, the Director of green finance and partnerships in the Directorate of environment and classified establishments (Deec) said that, in order to capture these funds, there needed to be relevant projects and programmes, depending on the sector, the question should be addressed, etc. "In Senegal, we have the ecological monitoring centre that tries to collect funds, but not in a sufficiently interesting way. It's just capped at 10 million dollars, or 5.682 billion CFA francs. At the same time, we have planned, at the Ministry of the environment, to set up a national climate fund. With this tool, we aim to mobilize 100 million dollars, about 57 billion CFA francs a year from 2020. And 10% of these resources will be domestic and 90%, we will look for them outside and a part will be devoted to private financing, informs Amadou Lamine Diagne.

However, the head of green finance at Deec points out that there are always aspects that "stall", especially on the status of the Fund, after three years of reflection. "Recently, we were invited by our Quebec partners to inspire us with their excellent Green Fund model. We are also thinking about how resources from oil and gas can contribute to this Fund, "says Mr. Diagne. In fact, according to him, in the economic, social and environmental Council (EESC), there are 15 projects already tied up, as well as in the Directorate of environment and classified establishments (Deec).

However, for Mr Diagne, we need to put a lot more actors in it. Because they are the ones who will express their needs. Hence the need for him to strengthen their capacities. It should be noted that around the world there are 25 climate finance mechanisms. And the 24th Conference of the parties on global warming will take place in Poland from 3 to 14 December.

Moctar FICOU/VivAfrik

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