A Climate Promise into Action: The Green Arab States Facility for Transition

November 7, 2022
Event Details

09 November 2022

12:30 PM to 1:30 PM (Egypt Time)

Sharm El Sheikh, Egypt

The Arab States region is critically endangered from climate risk, with the highest levels of food import dependency and water scarcity across the globe. The past decade saw one of the most severe drought cycles in the region for hundreds of years, exacerbating ecosystem fragility, displacement, and social vulnerability. By 2030, unless urgent actions are taken, water and food productivity could decline further.

The devastating effects of climate change are not only affecting the livelihoods of the people in the Arab States, but also generating geopolitical and security implications in the region, causing food and political crises. In order to tackle the multifaceted environmental and socio-economic problems of the region, a comprehensive green transition facility to support the sustainable green growth of the Arab States is needed. This was also validated by the comprehensive assessment of structural problems and solutions conducted through the Arab Human Development Report (Arab HDR) 2022.

UNDP and ISDB in an effort to develop relevant solutions are organizing a second roundtable consultation for the development of a new UNDP facility—the Green Arab States Facility for Transition (GAFT)—which UNDP is planning to launch in 2023.. This COP27 Roundtable will offer convene high level officials and representatives from IFIs and the private sector to engage with UNDP to co-create opportunities for green, sustainable and just transitions in the Arab States region. 

It will focus on developing green transition pathways in crisis and post-conflict settings: green solutions will be integrated into reconstruction efforts across the region; energy gaps in crisis settings and for displaced communities will be addressed through a more diversified energy mix. Customized solutions in different contexts will be developed in consultation with partners, including the panelists from the consultation.

COP27 will promote an ambitious outcome that protects people and the planet, especially in the Arab States region. Considering the critical impact of climate change in the region and that the region will host the COP for two consecutive years, (UAE will host COP 28 in 2023), the Arab States region can be primed as the center of green and just transitions, to scale up partnerships for climate change action, and to advance the implementation of the NDCs, including withing the framework of the recently approved High-Level Principles for developing a "Framework for Transition Finance" prepared by the G20 Sustainable Finance Working Group.

The first roundtable consultation was organized on the sidelines of the General Assembly in September 2022 in New York. The Roundtable witnessed high interest from stakeholders including partner governments. Urgent issues such as ensuring a focus on women, youth and marginalized groups; developing a holistic approach that takes into account the socio-economic context in the region; and highlighting the unique role of UNDP as a bridge between public and private sector. Finally participants noted the critical need to promote blended finance solutions through such a facility. These discussions will be continued in the 2nd roundtable, and the participation of experts of the region will greatly help to inform the finalization of the facility’s structure and operating modality.

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