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Ministers of International Cooperation & Environment Discuss Cooperation with Development Partners to Combat Climate Change

H.E. Dr. Rania A. Al-Mashat: “International Financial Institutions (IFIs) see Egypt as a leader in the green recovery agenda and seek to provide the country with the necessary support to strengthen efforts in this field.”

The Minister of International Cooperation, H.E. Dr. Rania A. Al-Mashat met with Minister of Environment H.E. Dr. Yasmine Fouad through a video conference to discuss ways to enhance cooperation with development partners, especially the World Bank Group (WBG) and the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD) regarding national efforts in combating climate change, reducing carbon emissions, and financing mechanisms for the Egypt's National Strategy for Adaptation to Climate Change. Al-Mashat said that Egypt is making progress in its efforts to combat climate change, shifting towards a green and sustainable economy, while preserving the environment and natural resources. The Minister pointed out that the continued coordination with the Ministry of Environment, and other stakeholders including development partners aims to strengthen the process of combating climate change, and in preparing national reports showcasing the tangible impact made. Al-Mashat added that International Financial Institutions (IFIs) see Egypt as a pioneering country in leading the agenda of green recovery in the region. The country has laid down many policies across several fields that allowed for clear plans that expand environmentally- friendly projects; these projects serve as aspiration for other emerging countries and countries of economic transition that wish to shift towards a green economy. The Minister of International Cooperation expressed that a meeting could be held within the Multi-stakeholder Platform, alongside the participation of of the Ministry of Environment, the private sector, and multilateral and bilateral development partners in order to present efforts made by the Ministry in combating climate change, and pushing the country forward towards a green economy. The Ministry of International Cooperation is as well involved in the follow-up of the projects, regular field visits to the development projects are organized in order to ensure the progress and smooth implementation of the cooperation agreements. Al-Mashat elaborated that the Ministry seeks to advance its development efforts in various sectors through its three principles of Economic Diplomacy; holding Multi-Stakeholder Platforms, ODA-SDG Mapping, and the Global Partnerships Narrative which puts “People at the Core”, “Projects in Action”, and “Purpose as the Driver”. Minister of Environment H.E. Dr. Yasmine Fouad shared that Egypt has an important role to play in the WBG’s “Green Climate” initiative as the country is a key player in the climate change negotiations being a coordinator in “The Group of 77” (G-77), and a Deputy of the Arab group and an important member of the African group. The Ministry of Environment, as the national point of contact for the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC), issues a periodic report every two years on efforts to combat climate change in Egypt. The report is the sum of efforts of all state ministries giving a clear, updated picture of the effect of climate change on Egypt, and the action plans put forth to fight against it. The National Council for Climate Change, which the Ministry of Environment coordinates, discusses strategic challenges and solutions related to the climate change agenda in Egypt. Fouad also explained that there are opportunities for cooperation with IFIs in formulating and implementing projects for the adaptation and mitigation of the effects of climate change in Egypt. Such projects are of great importance as there is a national will to integrate climate change in the development plans; attracting private sector investment to push towards the establishment of green cities, coastal protection, and agricultural development. It is worth noting that the environment sector is one of the vital sectors that the Ministry of International Cooperation secures development financing for; the current portfolio amounts to $260 million covering the implementation of 4 projects including solid waste management and industrial pollutant control; to which the WBG, European Investment Bank (EIB), the Agence Française de Développement (AFD), the European Union (EU) and Italy contribute.