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AIIB projects $50b investment for climate finance by 2030

By Jiang Xueqing | | Updated: 2021-10-27 09:44
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A view of the headquarters building of the Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank in Beijing. [Photo provided to]

The Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank said on Tuesday it estimates its cumulative climate finance approvals to reach $50 billion by 2030, representing a fourfold increase in annual climate finance commitments since AIIB started publicly reporting the number in 2019.

Earlier this year, the multilateral development bank announced it would target at least a 50 percent share of climate finance in actual financing approvals by 2025, up from 41 percent of its infrastructure portfolio in 2020. The latest announcement marks an important step toward achieving this goal.

"We are at a defining moment in history – one which calls for bold, fast and wide-ranging collective action if we are to limit global warming and protect our fragile planet," said Jin Liqun, president and chair of the board of directors at AIIB.

"Today's announcement reinforces AIIB's long-standing pledge to support climate action in line with the Paris Agreement. We think the way forward needs greater participation by the private sector on all fronts, so that we can collectively deliver on the promise of building an inclusive, equitable and sustainable future."

Speaking at a news conference on the sidelines of the 2021 AIIB Annual Meeting hosted by the United Arab Emirates, Jin said enhancing investments in adaptation and resilience for low-income members and fostering emerging technologies to drive action on climate change are key focus areas.

The bank said it will align its operations with the goals of the Paris Agreement by July 1, 2023. The Paris Alignment commitment would apply to sovereign and nonsovereign projects, including investments made via financial intermediaries.

AIIB is currently testing a rigorous process to ensure projects meet low-carbon and climate-resilient standards consistent with the Paris accord. The approach draws on the international standards and frameworks currently being developed in collaboration with other multilateral development banks.

"As an MDB located in the hub of innovation, we believe that technology can act as a lever to curb greenhouse gas emissions. However, this will require a more focused approach to the adoption of new technology as an essential element of any comprehensive response to global climate change. Ultimately, we need the private sector and institutional investors to come to the table to partner with us so that we can combat the worst impact on climate change," said Jin.

Last year, AIIB launched a climate change investment framework to accelerate the transition to a low-carbon economy through the capital markets. The framework allows investors to analyze climate risks with investment opportunities by translating the three objectives of the Paris Agreement – mitigation, resilience to physical change and transition to green economy – into quantifiable investment metrics by aligning financial flows with a low-carbon, climate-resilient pathway.

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