Sweden has been one of the strongest supporters of the Green Climate Fund, so it was with great pleasure that Executive Director Héla Cheikhrouhou today welcomed a visit to the Fund’s Headquarters in Songdo by a delegation of Swedish Parliamentarians.
The multiparty delegation was sent by the Civil Affairs Committee of the Riksdag, the Swedish Parliament. Led by Committee Chair Caroline Szyber, the eleven Parliamentarians met with GCF staff and participated in briefings on the Fund’s Country Programming Division and Private Sector Facility to further their understanding of the work of the Fund, in particular on country outreach and programming activities.
“The Green Climate Fund shows how much a single organisation can do to finance tremendously important projects,” said Ms. Szyber, speaking on behalf of the delegation. “This is why Sweden has funded GCF from the very outset and why it will provide resources to this organization in the future.”
The ties between Sweden and GCF date from the initial establishment of the Fund, which was strongly supported by the Swedish government. During GCF’s initial resource mobilisation, Sweden rapidly pledged funds and became one of the largest contributors per capita to the Fund. Swedish taxpayers have contributed an average of USD 60 per person (equivalent), for a total of USD 580 million equivalent, to support GCF’s work.
Sweden has long been a global leader on climate change, including playing host to the annual World Water Week conference, which Ms. Cheikhrouhou addressed in 2015. The country continues to support the realisation of climate efforts around the planet and is closely collaborating with agencies like the International Renewable Energy Agency (IRENA) and the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) including, for instance, to enhance renewable energy across Africa.
As part of this effort, the government is supporting expert meetings for policymakers across Africa, which will take place in February and March. The seminars are aimed at developing coordination around the implementation of the Paris Agreement and at realising investment opportunities offered by Intended Nationally Determined Contributions (INDCs).
Isabella Lövin, Sweden’s Minister for International Development Cooperation, has demonstrated her personal support for the Fund on many occasions. During its initial resource mobilisation she stated, "GCF is pivotal in furthering international momentum to tackle climate change – by strengthening mutual confidence among all the parties involved and catalysing new capital that can help the world switch to clean, renewable energy."
Earlier this month, the Minister visited Tonga to participate in a meeting of Pacific Small Island Developing States (SIDS) on climate change, calling for urgent action to combat rising sea levels and advocating for access to GCF funding.