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Dialogue opens new opportunities in Eastern Europe and Central Asia

The Green Climate Fund will seek to expand its portfolio of climate change projects and engagement in Eastern European and Central Asian countries with the opening of the GCF regional Structured Dialogue today in Dushanbe, Tajikistan.

The four-day forum, being opened by Tajikistan’s Deputy Prime Minister Zokirzoda Mahmadtoir Zoir, will bring together representatives from 13 countries across the region to accelerate climate action. Participants include representatives from Albania, Armenia, Azerbaijan, Georgia, the former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Moldova, Montenegro, Serbia, Tajikistan, Turkmenistan and Uzbekistan.

This is the first time GCF has engaged across the region on this scale, with the participation of significant regional players, including National Designated Authorities (NDAs) to GCF, high-level officials, numerous international Accredited Entities, entities that have been nominated for accreditation by their respective NDAs, as well as civil society organisations and private sector representatives.

As with many other parts of the world, Eastern Europe and Central Asia face considerable challenges form the onset of climate change, manifested through extreme weather patterns, and accompanied by the flow on of negative effects in forest and land use, water management and energy efficiency. This in turn has affected food security, exacerbating poverty, and is increasing the vulnerability of those who are already prone to climate impacts.

In Tajikistan, which a World Food Programme (WFP) study found last year is the most climate sensitive country in Eastern Europe and Central Asia, a warming planet is likely to increase water needs for basic agricultural crops by 20 to 30 percent. This is particularly telling in a nation where about 75 percent of the population lives in rural areas.

Across the region, there are indications climate finance can play a big part in stimulating new paths of development which come with a reduced burden on the planet.

Responding to numerous project ideas and proposals over the past couple of years, GCF has so far committed USD 391.5 million of climate finance in Eastern Europe and Central Asia. This has further leveraged over USD 1.1 billion in co-financing from other climate finance sources.

During the coming four days, the Dialogue will provide a platform for participants to think strategically about project ideas that promote climate action that add up to a comprehensive solution at the country level. To do this, the Dialogue will stress the importance of the country programming exercises that outline anticipated engagements with GCF. Countries will be supported to do this by tapping into GCF’s readiness support. The Dialogue will stress the importance of country programming exercises, which outline the projects countries intend to submit to GCF. Countries can progress these by tapping into GCF’s Readiness support.

With the participation of private sector representatives, as well as regional and national entities interested in becoming accredited to GCF, it is expected the Dialogue will serve as a platform to establish a diverse range of partnerships across the region to address mitigation and adaptation needs.