22 April 2024

Collaboration is key to advancing Inclusive Green Finance, say AFI leaders and private partners

AFI leaders from across the Global South, met with private sector partners this week to discuss practical ways of collaborating on advancing Inclusive Green Finance Globally (IGF). The AFI-hosted roundtable discussion took place on the sidelines of the IMF-World Bank Spring Meetings in Washington DC.

Roundtable attendees discussed how to create a more enabling regulatory environment for emerging IGF products, and the need for investment in expertise, market research and data collection to shed light on the climate-related risks faced by vulnerable communities and MSMEs.

“Inclusive Green Finance is the key to keeping vulnerable countries and communities afloat in the face of climate change, stressed AFI’s Director of Global Partnerships, Ilya Sverdlov. “Today’s discussion presents a unique opportunity to understand how public and private sector players can help one another embrace IGF for the sake of future generations.”

Pioneered by AFI, IGF was designed to help vulnerable populations and businesses mitigate and build resilience against climate impact through financial products services like green credit, green insurance, and digital payment solutions for accessing emergency financial support.

“It is in our interest as emerging market representatives to create IGF-enabling products and regulations, highlighted SEPS Ecuador Superintendent, Dr. Sofia Margarita Hernández. “It’s the only way to ensure the well-being and stability of – not only our communities – but also our economies in the face of climate change”

“It’s important for us private sector players to have very clear IGF regulatory guidelines, said Stephanie Smith, Senior Vice President of Humanitarian & Development at Mastercard. “Understanding local regulatory demands from the get-go, can help us deliver suitable digital IGF solutions faster.”

“Clear regulation is important,” agreed AFI funding partner, AFD’s Christine Poursat. “But trust is even more important. And trust in IGF products can only be achieved through robust supervision.”

Less than 8% of developing populations is insured and even a smaller proportion is insured against climate change, added Ashley Olson Onyango Head of Financial Inclusion and AgriTech at GSMA. “We need regulators’ help in campaigning for behavior change and getting communities to trust new products like green insurance.”

Leaders and partners agreed that by embracing private sector expertise and resources, including green credit schemes, climate risk insurance, and sustainable payment systems, central banks can boost vulnerable populations’ accessibility to green finance solutions. In return, IGF-enabling regulatory environments can encourage private sector investment in green projects, facilitating sustainable financing practices and long-term economic stability in emerging markets.

“To create IGF-sensitive policies and regulations, we need all the insight and expertise we can get”, said Climate Works’ Jwala Rambarran. “Working with public, private, philanthropy, government, and development sector partners is critical to providing well-informed IGF products and services that are tailored to the needs of the most vulnerable to climate change impacts. Successful IGF depends on collaboration and shared insight.”

It was agreed that cooperation on IGF within AFI presents a unique opportunity for public and private sector leaders to build vulnerable communities’ resilience to climate change. Further deliberations on IGF are being planned in the period ahead.

The roundtable meeting was attended by AFI leaders from across the Global South, AFI’s strategic private sector partners Mastercard, Visa and GSMA, and other strategic stakeholders including the Agence Française de Développement, Canada’s International Development Research Centre, the Federal Ministry for Economic Affairs and Climate Action of Germany, the Swedish International Development Cooperation, and the World Food Programme.

The AFI-hhttps://idrc-crdi.ca/enosted IGF-PPD Roundtable was supported by Climate Works – A global platform for philanthropy to innovate and accelerate climate solutions that scale.


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