UNDP Around the world

Helen Clark: Speech at the Private Sector Platform Launch at the World Green Economy Organisation

Feb 11, 2017

Putting in place inclusive, zero-carbon energy solutions helps countries achieve their national climate action targets, while also achieving a range of other goals across health, education, women’s empowerment, and green growth. Credit: UNDP

It is a pleasure to participate in this launch of the Private Sector Platform.  I commend the leadership of His Highness Sheikh Ahmed Bin Saeed Al Maktoum, Chairman of the Dubai Supreme Council of Energy who has fully backed this initiative.

I was honoured to join His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice President and Prime Minister of the UAE and Ruler of Dubai, at the World Green Economy Summit in Dubai last October when the World Green Economy Organisation was launched.  

When the new Organisation is fully operational in 2019, it will be able to support countries to move towards a green, low-carbon, and climate-resilient future. The reputation and role of United Arab Emirates as a hub for innovation and finance provides a strong foundation for the new organization. Its mission, also fully reflects the Government of Dubai’s objective to make Dubai the global capital of the green economy.

With the entry into force of the Paris Climate Agreement in November last year, the focus is now on its implementation. Putting in place inclusive, zero-carbon energy solutions helps countries achieve their national climate action targets, while also achieving a range of other goals across health, education, women’s empowerment, and green growth. Making the agriculture, water, and infrastructure sectors more resilient to climate risks sets economies on more sustainable trajectories.

Bottom-up and locally-owned solutions will be critical to advance on all these fronts. The WGEO, with its focus on technical assistance and facilitating the sharing of country experiences through both South-South and North-South Co-operation can play an important role in that.

UNDP is proud to have been chosen by the UAE to assist WGEO to get established over the next two years. In so doing, we will help map the options for establishing a new international organization, identify ways of achieving green economy and climate action goals, and outline options for partnerships.

The challenges presented by a warming and more volatile climate, and the actions needed to address them, are huge. Strong and broad-based partnerships are necessary for success. That is as true for driving action at the national and local levels as it is for reaching agreements at the global level. The WGEO aims to develop partnerships with both developed and developing country governments, and with the private sector; the banking system - including with multilateral and regional banks; with multilateral organizations like UNDP; and with foundations, think tanks, institutes, and civil society organizations.

By bringing together a wide range of stakeholders, WGEO will pioneer new ways of promoting the green economy, providing the platform from which they can work together, and combining expertise and experience.  The aim is to facilitate trust among all partners, which is essential for success.

Engaging the private sector will be particularly critical, building on Dubai’s role as a global business hub. WGEO and the Private Sector Platform aim to get the private sector fully on board, to help showcase innovative projects, partnerships, and technologies and to open up market opportunities.  WGEO could help countries design policies which will de-risk investments in areas necessary for building the green economy. WGEO would also focus on promoting the use of green finance. 

UNDP supports countries around the world to green their economies and make them more climate-friendly. We have a $2.8 billion portfolio of climate change initiatives deployed across more than 140 countries. As the UN’s leading implementer of climate action initiatives, UNDP stands ready to utilize its networks around the world, and the lessons we have learned from more than 25 years of work in this area.  We will work with WGEO to spread the green economy message worldwide. 

Let me once again thank His Excellency Sheikh Ahmed Bin Saeed Al Maktoum, Chairman of Dubai Supreme Council of Energy, and the Supreme Council of Energy’s CEO, His Excellency Ahmad Buti Al Muhairbi, for their leadership in launching the Private Sector Platform.  My sincere thanks also go to our key partner, Dubai Electricity and Water Authority Managing Director and WGEO Chairman, Saeed Al Tayer. UNDP stands ready to assist WGEO in this new endeavor.