Executive Director’s pre-recorded statement

  • Event
    High-level Panel and Ambassadors Side Event at the 37th African Union Summit: Accelerating finance for climate resilient water investments in Africa, Addis Ababa, Ethiopia
  • Publication date 16 Feb 2024

Excellencies, Dear Colleagues,

Though I may not be with you in person today, I am joining you in spirit and purpose.

I recognise the African Union Commission, the Africa Water Investment Program, and the Global Water Partnership Africa for their leadership and commitment to a climate-resilient, water-secure Africa.

Thank you for convening this important dialogue.

Friends: in Africa, some 250 million people are grappling with high water stress—a reality that threatens to displace up to 700 million people by 2030. Africa’s water scarcity crisis demands urgent and substantial investment. Current funding levels fall well short of the estimated USD 30 billion needed every year to address the continent’s escalating needs.

That is why the Green Climate Fund is working with partners—including many present here today—to narrow the water finance gap and realize aspirations enshrined in the AU’s Agenda 2063.

In total, we’ve committed USD 3.5 billion to drive resilient water systems in 28 African countries. We’re investing in AU initiatives such as the Great Green Wall, Great Blue Wall, and ClimDev-Africa.

For example, in July of last year, we approved our largest-ever water investment, allocating USD2 50 million to accelerate water recycling efforts and attract private capital for critical water initiatives across South Africa.

And this year we begin a new programming cycle, backed by a record USD 12.8 billion replenishment and guided by an updated strategic plan.

As we begin this new programming cycle, I’m pleased to announce that GCF is set to approve over USD 6 million in grant resources from our Readiness Programme to develop tailor-made Water Investment Programs for 15 AU member states.

These programs will help build in-country capacity, enhance access to GCF resources, and create an environment where financiers can more readily help countries turn climate ambitions into climate projects.

We’re teaming up with the Africa Water Investment Program to mobilise a target of USD 30 billion by 2030 for sustainable, resilient water systems.

In pursuit of our 50by30 vision, GCF will simplify access, approve and fund projects faster, and we’ll double down on supporting climate action in the world’s most vulnerable places and populations.

We are eager to build on what we’ve achieved and expand our impact. Together we can and will secure a water-resilient future for Africa.

Thank you.