Climate Finance Virtual Workshop GCF Program – Challenges & Opportunities for the Private Sector in Burkina Faso

Ouagadougou, 16 April 2020, The Global Green Growth Institute Burkina Faso Country Office, in partnership with the Green Climate Fund Executive Secretariat in Burkina Faso hosted, in the framework of the Readiness Program ‘Support for Accreditation of Direct Access Entities, Pipeline Development and Private Sector Mobilization in Burkina Faso, a webinar aiming at engaging the private sector in climate finance.

This webinar brought together fifty-five participants from private banks and financial institutions, insurance companies, institutional investors, public and private institutions as well as climate finance market builders and facilitators in Burkina Faso. Other individual participants having shown an interest in that webinar also attended.

The main objective of this conference was to contribute to mobilizing private sector engagement in climate finance by creating an enabling environment for crowding-in private investments at national, regional and international levels.  This webinar shares cutting-edge knowledge on climate finance, especially funding opportunities offered by the Green Climate Fund.

In his opening speech, Dr Malle Fofana, GGGI Country Representative in Burkina Faso and Convener of the webinar,  introduced his guest speakers namely Mr Issaka Ouedraogo, National Designated Authority at the Green Climate Fund Secretariat, Prime Ministry of Burkina Faso, Mr Amadou Lamine Fall, Green Investments Expert at GGGI and Yacouba Ouedraogo, GCF Readiness Program Lead Consultant at GGGI.

Kicking-off the first part of the webinar, Mr Issaka Ouedraogo, first provided the overall context of climate change and its impact on people, the planet and the economy.  He then introduced the concept of climate finance. Mr Ouedraogo noted that while a definition of the concept of climate finance is yet to be agreed internationally, it is generally agreed that climate finance involves the financial resources mobilized to fund actions that adapt and mitigate the impacts of climate change. He then stressed how important embedding climate change into business operations is critical to the long term sustainability of businesses.  He then introduced the policy and institutional framework established by the Government of Burkina Faso to facilitate access to climate finance, especially the Green Climate Fund resources.

The second speaker, Mr Yacouba Ouedrago, introduced the Readiness Program, its strategic objectives as well as key pillars of the program. He then elaborated on the support the project is providing to climate finance stakeholders in Burkina Faso, especially supporting the Accreditation of Direct Access Entities, facilitating the development of climate adaptation and mitigation projects pipeline and mobilizing and engaging the private sector in Burkina Faso.

In the second part of the webinar, building on the presentation prepared by Amadou Lamine Fall, Dr Malle Fofana introduced the global landscape of climate finance. He pointed out that while the global climate finance landscape is complex and still evolving, climate finance remain central to achieving low-carbon, climate-resilient green growth. Climate finance flows through multilateral channels as well as through bilateral, regional and national channels.  Dr Fofana stressed key opportunities that climate finance, especially the Green Climate Fund could provide to private sector stakeholders in Burkina Faso.

Mr. Issaka Ouedraogo, then presented the last part of the session by stressing the leadership role the private sector in Burkina Faso could play in Climate Finance. He urged private sector stakeholders, especially financial institutions, private banks and insurance companies to rise to the challenge of embedding climate change into their business operations. He concluded that integrating climate change into business operations could reap significant social, environmental economic benefits along with a financial return. Private sector has therefore a key role to play in climate finance in Burkina Faso.

Participants were then provided the opportunities to comment and raise queries through a Q&A session.

The discussions focused on the following main points: (i) Tax incentives that encourage the private sector to engage in green impact investments, (ii) direct access accreditation process, (iii) The extent to which the private sector is involved in mitigation and adaptation projects, (iv) the timeline  and cost involve in the accreditation process.

Dr Malle Fofana, in his closing remarks, thanked all participants for their comments and suggestions and reiterate that GGGI is considering jointly holding, in collaboration with the Green Climate Fund Secretariat in Burkina Faso, further virtual workshops to engage the private sector in climate finance in Burkina Faso