November 21, 2023 Tuesday
QUEZON CITY, 21 November 2023 – At the Climate Investment Forum (CIF) 2023 held yesterday at Crowne Plaza Manila Galleria, key stakeholders from the public and private sectors sought to establish conducive conditions for climate-related investments aligned with national policies and sectoral needs.
Stronger collaboration between the government and private sector is necessary to scale up sustainable and green investments that propel economic growth, as laid out in the Philippine Development Plan (PDP) 2023-2028.
In a keynote address, Department of Finance Secretary Benjamin E. Diokno outlined the country's first Sustainable Finance Roadmap which sets the stage for a comprehensive, whole-of-government approach to promote sustainable finance.
The roadmap includes strategic plans such as integrating risk management, encouraging climate related disclosures, and participating in international initiatives. "We are laying the groundwork for enabling a just transition where every sector, every community, and individual can thrive," he emphasized.
Diokno highlighted the crucial role of the “Green Forces” alluding to the Inter-agency Technical Working Group for Sustainable Finance. This body reviews the sustainable finance landscape, addresses policy gaps, and integrates sustainability into microeconomic policies.
Director Nieva Natural of the National Economic and Development Authority presented enabling mechanisms for climate investment, including the PDP 2023-2038, emphasizing the need for investments from the private sector to augment public investments and funds.
The World Bank, through its Country Climate and Development Report, explained the benefits of investing in climate solutions. The report states that “the cost of climate adaptation is substantial but easily outweighed by the economic benefits of reduced climate damage. Mitigation measures would increase GDP by about 0.5 percent in 2040 and generate 80,000 jobs.”
For his part, Dr. Selva Ramachandran, Resident Representative of the United Nations Development Programme, reiterated UNDP's commitment to supporting the country's efforts in climate-resilient development and accelerating climate investment and financing. Emphasizing the need for increased private sector engagement, Dr. Ramachandran stated, "Together, we can forge a path towards sustainable development, harnessing the strength of bayanihan for positive change."
The event also featured a presentation on the Strategic Investment Priority Plan by Director Sandra Marie Recolizado of the Board of Investments.
Panel discussions ensued. The first session was moderated by Mr. Bonar Laureto of SyCip, Gorres, Velayo and Company. It featured Department of Transportation Assistant Secretary Leonel Cray De Velez and Department of Energy Director Willian Quinto addressing topics on steering investments towards a low-carbon pathway.
The second panelists included Ms. Maria Christine Ponce Garcia of Nestle Incorporated, Mr. Peterson Fernandez of Globe, Mr. Edwin Carrie of UNDP and Mr. Marcel Silvius of the Global Green Growth Institute who delved into the theme of advancing adaptation actions.
Discussions followed during the open forum, covering topics such as security concerns in climate programs, private sector thoughts on new technologies, and challenges faced by organizations in investing more in climate action.
Commissioner Rachel Anne Herrera concluded the forum, summarizing key insights and emphasizing the need for collaborative efforts between the public and private sectors to address climate challenges.
In her closing remarks, she expressed optimism for the country’s sustainable future, noting that the Philippines is poised to lead the region in sustainable finance, fostering innovation and prioritizing climate-related investments.
“With sustained support of our partners from the private sector and business community, we shall be leveraging on boosting collaboration aimed towards maximizing opportunities and available resources beyond the defined landscape of climate financing,” she pointed out.
Commissioner Herrera said that in line with the pronouncements upheld by President Ferdinand R. Marcos Jr., “we must mitigate, adapt to, and be part of the solution – embark on advocacies, programs, and initiatives that will help us preserve our home.”
“This year’s CIF serves as a testament that through our strong collaboration, we can achieve and accomplish more. We hope to further strengthen our linkages beyond this forum, in the aim of carrying out fit-for-purpose and transformational climate interventions,” she concluded.
The CIF 2023 is part of the 16th Global Warming and Climate Change Consciousness Week happening from November 19 to 25, 2023. It serves as a platform for enhanced collaboration between the government and private sector, addressing challenges and capitalizing on opportunities in climate investments. The forum seeks to expedite the transition towards a climate-resilient and low-carbon future.
For updates on the CCC Week commemoration visit the Climate Change Commission’s website at https://climate.gov.ph and www.facebook.com/cccphl.