By Temitope Ponle
Abuja, – The African Union (AU) has welcomed the Netherlands’ contribution of 110 million Euros in support of the Africa Adaptation Acceleration Programme (AAAP).
In a statement issued on the website of the African Development Bank (AfDB), the support is coming ahead of a COP27 leaders’ event on “Accelerating Adaptation in Africa’’.
The ongoing United Nations Climate Change Conference, also called COP27, is being held in Sharm El-Sheikh, Egypt.
The Prime Minister of Netherlands, Mark Rutte announced the financial commitment during a high-level meeting with Senegal’s President, Macky Sall, who is also the Chairperson of the AU.
Also, Prof. Patrick Verkooijen, Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of the Global Centre on Adaptation (GCA), and the President of the AfDB Group, Dr Akinwumi Adesina were present.
Rutte said it was time the Netherlands worked with Africa to ensure investment flow through the acceleration programme.
“We have to face reality: climate change is already having lasting effects. Climate resilience must be our motto, climate adaptation our common endeavour.
“Adapting to climate change is in the DNA of the Netherlands and it is vital that we work with our partners in Africa.
“This is to ensure investments flow through the bold and innovative roadmap that AAAP delivers for climate-proofing cities, farms, and infrastructure, to protect livelihoods and to ensure economic continuity.”
Moreover, Sall spoke on the importance of action over words as world leaders were meeting to discuss the global response to the climate emergency.
“Africa is ground zero for the global climate breakdown. Nobody benefits if Africa fails to tackle it.
“The AAAP is Africa’s response to the climate crisis to leverage investments in adaptation and resilience not just to protect ourselves from the threat of climate change, but to drive a green economic growth agenda for prosperity.”
Furthermore, Verkooijen welcomed the financial contribution from the Netherlands, thanking the prime minister and AU chairperson for their leadership on climate adaptation in Africa.
“AAAP’s catalytic interventions have already rapidly delivered impact at scale by mainstreaming adaptation into projects worth more than 3.5 billion dollars since 2021.
“The Netherlands’ support of 10 million Euros for the AAAP Upstream Financing Facility will influence investments in adaptation worth a further one billion Euros for Africa.
“This scale of impact is vital as Africa, indeed the world is confronting multiple global shocks that are reverberating through our economies.’’
He said the AAAP gave force to the critical actions and global finance needed to address the climate and food crisis and to build a more resilient continent.
Also speaking at the high-level meeting, Adesina said the support would mobilise more climate adaptation financing for Africa.
“The 100 million Euros financial support from the Netherlands toward the AAAP Climate Action Window of the African Development Fund is a major impetus for our efforts to bolster support for low-income countries of Africa that are most vulnerable to climate change.
“It is a great start as we accelerate efforts to mobilise more climate adaptation financing for Africa through the AAAP.
“This is a great outcome right here at COP 27, the Africa COP, with a concrete action from Netherlands on adaptation finance for Africa.
“We look forward to other countries stepping up for climate adaptation in Africa as we approach the 16th replenishment of the African Development Fund in December.” he said.
AAAP was developed by AfDB and the GCA to mobilise 25 billion dollars by 2025 to implement, scale and accelerate climate adaptation across the African continent.
The UN Climate Change Conference which began on Nov. 6, would end on Nov. 18. (NAN)