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Sitharaman calls for concrete action on climate financing

New Delhi will showcase at COP28 what it has achieved with its own funds, finance minister says at India Global Forum

Sitharaman calls for concrete action on climate financing
[Source photo: Chetan Jha/Press Insider]

Finance minister Nirmala Sitharaman has called for concrete action on climate financing and transfer of technology at the global climate summit in Dubai this week. 

Speaking during a virtual session at the inaugural India Global Forum Middle East and Africa 2023 (IGF ME&A), Sitharaman said COP28 should show the direction to countries, adding that India, on its part, will showcase what it has achieved with its own funds. 

The 28th edition of the annual United Nations Climate Change Conference or Conference of the Parties of the UNFCCC, more commonly referred to as COP28, begins in the UAE from Thursday. 

Developed countries are expected to push for wealthy nations to honor their pledge of contributing $100 billion annually for climate initiatives. This commitment, established during COP16 in Cancun and reaffirmed at COP21 in Paris, is aimed at addressing climate impacts, reducing fossil fuel reliance and methane emissions, and providing financial support to mitigate global warming and adapt to climate changes.. 

Prime Minister Narendra Modi will this week travel to the UAE, where he is expected to present India’s progress toward the net-zero target. 

“The Paris commitment given by us has been funded by us. We didn’t wait for the $100 billion that is never on the table. A lot of talk, but no money coming on the table; no pathways to show how technology is going to be transferred,” she said. 

Modi previously attended the Glasgow conference in 2021, COP26, where he announced India’s target to achieve net zero by 2070.

“Particularly for developing and emerging market economies, funding this is going to be a huge challenge. So I would think the conversations can happen, a lot of talk can happen but eventually, COP28 should show the direction, both for transfer of technology and for the actual funding,” she added. 

According to a report by the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD), total climate finance provided and mobilized by developed countries for developing countries in 2021 was $89.6 billion, up by 7.6% from the previous year. 

Public climate finance, including both bilateral and multilateral, almost doubled over the 2013-21 period, from $38 billion to $73.1 billion, accounting for the vast majority of the total $89.6 billion in 2021, the report said.

The rest of the funds came from export credits and mobilized private climate finance. 

By 2025, developing countries are estimated to need around $1 trillion annually for climate investments, rising to roughly $2.4 trillion each year between 2026 and 2030, according to the OECD analysis. 

“To close this investment and financing gap, they will need to harness a range of financial sources across public, private, domestic, and international finance. Although public finance can only contribute a share of these extensive needs, increased involvement of international providers is key,” OECD Secretary-General Mathias Cormann said in the report released before the climate summit.


Ahamad Fuwad is the head of the bureau at Press Insider. Fuwad has commissioned, penned, and edited stories across digital and print publications over a journalism career spanning nine years. An accomplished multimedia journalist, he has had stints at DNA, The Free Press Journal, and The Quint. More

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