Remarks by Minister Mujawamariya at Green Investment Bank Breakfast Meeting
Thu, 01/30/2020 - 17:38
Good morning. Mwaramutse!
It is a pleasure to welcome you to discuss developing a green investment bank for Rwanda. Thank you for taking time to join us and share your valuable experience and insights.
Rwanda is pursuing an ambitious climate action agenda to build resilience to climate change and foster green growth. However, the current investment trend shows a financing shortfall to meet our climate change adaptation and mitigation needs. This is particularly evident in the private sector.
When we first developed our Green Growth and Climate Resilience Strategy ten years ago, the future economic cost to effectively address climate change was estimated to be 300 million dollars per year. Models also indicated that Rwanda could lose more than one percent of our GDP annually to climate change related losses by 2030, and an even greater proportion thereafter.
The impact of the recent flooding events and the tragic loss of lives has shown us that these were not simply predictions, but also a warning to act.
That is why green growth has become a central to Rwanda’s transformation agenda. The country’s long-standing commitment to the environment has been translated into concrete impact rooted in homegrown solutions such as Umuganda, terracing, banning single use plastics and investing in conservation and renewable energy. These efforts have ensured Rwanda’s leadership on climate action and environmental protection is well known.
The National Strategy for Transformation 1 also calls for the private sector to accelerate inclusive economic growth and transition Rwanda towards a green economy. Our goal is to create more than 200,000 decent, off-farm and hopefully green jobs annually.
For now, however, we do not have enough innovative and scalable ventures and the few that do exist are not able to achieve the country’s climate agenda alone.
As a result, we are searching for ways to promote private sector led adaptation and mitigation. Such strategies to adapt to and mitigate climate change require significant investment and the coordination of multiple stakeholders and sectors.
This includes mainstreaming climate considerations in priority sub-sectors such as biomass replacement, green cities, sustainable transport, waste, water, renewable energy and climate-smart agriculture - all of which are critical for Rwanda’s economic transformation.
The development of these and other sectors must be approached from a climate resilience perspective, and having a green investment bank will no doubt bridge the financing gap in our market.
Green banks typically use a blended finance model to support development. Capitalisation comes from a variety of public and private sources, including donor nations, climate funds and national treasuries.
The Rwanda Green Investment Bank will support us to achieve national targets as well as the Sustainable Development Goals and our national climate action plan. The bank is designed to address market needs, understand local risks and use financing tools such as debt and equity to drive private investment.
As governments address the warming of the planet, finance has become the centre of climate action policies and strategies. That’s why we need to expand the capacity of the Rwanda Green Fund and take advantage of new opportunities. A green investment bank will act as a force multiplier and fast-track our green growth.
I would like to take this opportunity to thank the Coalition for Green Capital and the United Nations Development Programme for supporting Rwanda on this journey to develop a green investment bank.
We are counting on the support and engagement of everyone present today to make the bank a reality and ensure it is a success for generations to come.
Thank you for your kind attention.