What have you learned from this mid-term review of AFD Group's climate strategy?
Damien Navizet – We designed this mid-term review as an essential tool for managing the four commitments of our climate strategy which are: ensuring 100% Paris Agreement activity, increasing the volume of climate financing, redirecting financial flows, and co-building climate finance solutions and standards. The goal is also to ensure that all Group teams continue to take ownership of this strategy. Based on a broad internal and external consultation, it was able to gather very diverse views on the impacts of this strategy.
Regarding our initial lessons learned, I think it is important to emphasize the strong transformational impact of our strategy and its flagship objective: 100% Paris Agreement. Our influence on multilateral banks, which have adopted a similar methodology to ours, is already measurable just like our influence on the International Development Finance Club (IDFC) where we coordinate the work on climate change.
Internally, the evolution of the operational strategies adopted since 2018 and the portfolio of projects is what fully illustrates how the Climate strategy has been adopted, with a climate finance volume that reached €6 billion in 2019, €2 billion of which was dedicated to adaptation to the impacts of climate change.
However, there is still room for progress with, for example, the need to capitalize on AFD Group's sector-specific expertise to strengthen the alignment of our operations with the Paris Agreement, particularly in the case of bank intermediation projects where financing is granted to public and private financial institutions. This mid-term review also enabled us to identify a real need for more climate finance at Proparco and in France’s overseas departments.
What more can be accomplished by 2022 to make the Group a truly pioneering development bank in alignment with the Paris Agreement?
This first review has confirmed that our commitments remain relevant. However, it has enabled us to identify the need to better integrate into our overall strategy the fact that, as of 2010, the issue of climate change has been taken into account internally with greater attention to limiting our operating emissions.
See also: AFD's climate and development strategy - The full, Midterm Review
Launched in 2020, a pivotal year for the climate, it also encourages us to reinforce our ambitions by implementing a roadmap for alignment with the Paris Agreement by 2022. This mid-term review also commits the Group to promoting synergies between climate change issues and the social (health, education), gender, and digital sectors. Finally, it also encourages us to increase the share of our climate finance that supports biodiversity from 15% in 2018 to 30% by 2025.
Will the effects of the current health crisis change our climate efforts in the years to come?
The economic and social impact of the coronavirus is hitting the world hard. Our efforts must contribute directly to a sustainable recovery: this is not the time to do less for the climate! On the other hand, we must seize every opportunity to achieve environmental and social co-benefits and accelerate the implementation of our 100% Paris Agreement, 100% social link, and "3D" development objectives on the ground.
We must also be capable of thinking about a fair transition, particularly in Africa where the issues of employment and fragility are significant. To complete the alignment process by 2022, a roadmap has been drawn up. It must provide a long-term response to the crisis, propose new synergies between the climate and other SDGs, and foster public policy dialog at all levels in line with our geographical mandates. Mobilizing the private sector for sustainable investment is another area in which AFD and development banks also have a key role to play.