Private sector green growth strategies from Rwanda and Ethiopia are models to emulate
Rwanda and Ethiopia have economic development models that can promote the financing of climate resilience and development-led green economies. The two countries’ models were presented at an event on May 25 during the 2018 Annual Meetings of the Board of Governors of the African Development Bank in Busan, Korea.
The session was sponsored by the Global Green Growth Institute, which had worked closely with both governments to successfully promote strategies in green growth and climate resilience and with which the Bank signed a memorandum of understanding (MoU) to promote programs, conduct joint studies and research to accelerate green growth options for African countries.
Hyoeun Jenny Kim, Deputy Director General of the Global Green Growth Institute, said, “What we now see in Rwanda and Ethiopia is proof that green growth is the future of sustainable development. We will focus on Africa because it offers huge potential climate-resilient investments.
“We have worked extensively with Ethiopia and Rwanda throughout the comprehensive stages of designing projects and mobilizing funds. The success of this collaboration indicates that countries must adopt locally relevant green growth paths.”
Hubert Ruzibiza, CEO of Rwanda’s Green Fund, described Rwanda’s success in mobilizing climate finance, which forms a crucial part of the country’s second Economic Development and Poverty Reduction Strategy and Green Growth and Climate Resilience Strategy.
The strategy seeks to mainstream climate resilience and low carbon development into key sectors of the economy at a time when Rwanda’s growing population is putting pressure on its natural resources.
“The public and private sector in Rwanda have earmarked climate resilience as a key investment opportunity. We identify and invest in the best locally developed projects that can propel Rwanda’s commitment to building a strong green economy,” Ruzibiza said.
“It is through this that the Rwanda Green Fund has created about 137,000 green jobs, rehabilitated over 19,000 hectares of land against erosion, and made it possible for about 28,000 families to get connected to off-grid clean energy.”
Fisiha Abera, Director General of the International Financial Institutions Cooperation in Ethiopia, described how Ethiopia has raised funds for green growth and climate-resilience funding, in particular from the small and medium-sized businesses that constitute 90% of the business economy.
“Ethiopia has a strategy for developing a climate‐resilient green economy by 2025. We are committed to reducing greenhouse gas emissions while safeguarding economic growth. This project will also help to improve crop and livestock production and protect forests services in the ecosystem,” Abera said.
Anthony Nyong, Director for Climate Change and Green Growth at the African Development Bank, noted that although climate change threatens global development, various success stories from different parts of Africa serve as examples for others.
“Addressing climate change is central to the Bank’s development and poverty reduction agenda. African countries that do not develop climate resilience financing models could be hit hardest because they are less resilient and rely more heavily on climate-sensitive sectors like agriculture.”