Two months to the 27th global climate summit (COP27) in Egypt, key African and global leaders rallied in Rotterdam, to highlight the urgency of climate adaptation funding for the continent.

The summit, the first to focus on helping Africa adapt to the fallout from climate change, brought together the African Union Commission Chair Mousa Faki Mahamat, CEO of the Global Center on Adaptation (GCA) Professor Patrick Verkooijen and other dignitaries. Co-convened by the President of the African Development Bank Group Dr Akinwumi Adesina, top among the unanimous realizations was the need for concrete action and finance for climate adaptation to be reached.

“The current climate financing architecture is not meeting the needs of Africa. New estimates by the African Economic Outlook of the African Development Bank show that Africa will need between 1.3 and 1.6 trillion dollars from 2020 to 2030, or $118 billion to $145 billion annually to implement its commitments to the Paris Agreement and its nationally determined contributions,” Akinwumi said.

Adesina further added that commitments by developed countries to provide $100 billion annually in climate finance for developing countries was long overdue. “Africa cannot wait, this is the time to support the Africa Adaptation Acceleration Program. This is the time to support the ADF 16th replenishment, ”he reiterated.

Director General of the World Trade Organization Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala also present in the summit stressed the importance of the “free flow of trade” in Africa to help achieve the goals of global climate change. Speaking about the role of trade in climate adaptation, she said trade policies should be integrated into global climate action as an amplifying force for financing and other climate-related support provided to vulnerable economies.

“You cannot really talk about adaptation without considering that a free flow of trade is needed because you might have the finances but if trade policies are not right, those who need new technologies for adaptation, if there is no free flow of goods and , may not be able to use the money to get at it,” said Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala.

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