Editorial: Ecobank (GH) to finance green economy projects

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Ecobank Ghana has been accredited by the Green Climate Fund (GCF). It therefore becomes the first entity in Ghana, and the first commercial bank in sub-Saharan Africa, to be accredited to the Fund.

By this accreditation, the bank attains direct access to funding for financing climate change mitigation and adaptation projects, as well as grants for capacity building. Ecobank will receive funds from the GCF for on-lending to beneficiary institutions involved in climate change projects in Ghana.

The financial capacity of the accreditation enables the bank to finance projects up to US$250million. The Green Climate Fund (GCF) is a global fund created to support efforts of developing countries in responding to the challenges of climate change, and to help limit or reduce their greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions.

The Fund was set up in 2010 by the 194 countries which are parties to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC), as part of the Convention’s financial mechanisms. GCF recognises the need to ensure that developing country partners exercise ownership of climate change funding and integrate it within their own national action plans.

The National Climate Change Policy (NCCP) is Ghana’s integrated response to climate change. It was also crafted to position Ghana to draw funding for meeting its national adaptation needs. Funding the country’s response to climate change has not been so forthcoming, which is why Ecobank Ghana’s accreditation by the GCF positions the country’s green economy to flourish and grow in leaps and bounds.

Ghana’s economy relies heavily on climate-sensitive sectors – mainly agriculture, energy and forestry. Any anomaly in the climate therefore tends to affect the economy of Ghana, particularly for the vulnerable.

The need to properly plan and carefully adopt a development path that ensures climate resilience and integrate adaptation measures into all facets of national development planning, particularly at the local level, makes the preparation of a National Climate Change Adaptation Strategy (NCCAS) all the more relevant.

Ecobank’s accreditation therefore offers a dedicated funding scheme for improving the country’s green economy. Currently, it is only the Ghana Climate Innovation Centre (GCIC) as a pioneering incubator that provides some funding for SME ventures in the green economy, and Ecobank’s addition is a major development for promoting Ghana’s green economy.

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