Opening Address by Rwanda Green Fund CEO at #RGGW Climate Finance Workshop

Opening Address by Hubert Ruzibiza

Chief Executive Officer, Rwanda Green Fund

LEDs Africa Training on Climate Finance

Kigali Convention Centre | Wednesday, 6 December 2017

Good morning!

Let me take this opportunity to welcome you to Rwanda – the land of a thousand hills. We are honoured to host this year’s event.

I would like to thank LEDs Africa and 4C Maroc for their tireless efforts and collaboration to make this training a reality. Let me also take this opportunity to thank to you, the participants here today. I hope you will share the unique experiences from your countries because we all have a lot to learn from one another.

Climate finance is at the heart of a successful response to climate change adaptation and mitigation for Least Developed Countries. Several funding avenues are available to us, but many vulnerable nations, including Rwanda, do not have the technical capacity to access them. This is just one reason I am pleased to welcome you to this training session. This is the second time that a training on climate finance has been conducted with LEDS Africa and 4C Maroc, and I am sure we will build on the knowledge acquired and partnerships built in Casablanca last year.

The consequences of climate change are being felt heavily in every country, but none more so than Least Developed Countries. Climate change and climate adaptation no longer remain environmental issues alone. They are increasingly becoming developmental and economic issues. The warming of our planet is affecting all aspects of the development agenda, from poverty eradication and healthcare to food security and much more.

As one of the most vulnerable nations to the impact of a warming world, Rwanda has placed climate change high on its list of priorities. Despite limited resources, the country is sparing no efforts to address climate change.

In 2011, we developed a Green Growth and Climate Resilience Strategy. A year later, we established the Rwanda Green Fund (FONERWA) to finance its implementation. Today, the fund is currently capitalized to a tune of approximately 100 million US dollars. Through a partnership with the Development Bank of Rwanda, we have established a credit line offering some of the cheapest capital in the country for green growth initiatives – well below markets rates. In 2015, the international Green Climate Fund accredited our Ministry of Environment, and we are working tirelessly to develop proposals to attract funding.

Next week, we shall present Rwanda’s Strategic Programme for Climate Resilience and Forest Investment Plan to the Climate Investment Funds at their board meeting in Washington DC. It is estimated that these innovative and transformational programmes will need investments of more than 600 million dollars over the next seven years.

This is just one example of the need to scale up investments in climate resilience by finding innovative ways to access public finance and attract private capital. This training is thus timely as it will raise awareness on the international climate finance landscape and strengthen our expertise in accessing global climate funds.

I am confident that by the end of this training, you will be equipped to unlock the much needed capital for mitigation and adaptation investments, and that we will be in a good position to draw up a climate finance capacity development roadmap.

Finally, I encourage you to take part in the Rwanda Green Growth Week, which began on Monday and concludes on Friday with a Green Walk through the city of Kigali. Don’t forget to wear your green shirts!

Once again, thank you for being here and I hope you enjoy your stay in remarkable Rwanda.

I wish you all fruitful deliberations. Thank you.