AFRICA PRIVATE SECTOR COALITION COMMITS TO CLIMATE RESPONSIBILITY FRAMEWORK

Equity Group Managing Director and CEO Dr. James Mwangi presents the private sector statement of commitment to combating climate change on behalf of the private sector during the closing of the 2023 Africa Climate Summit.
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As a key stakeholder to the climate solution agenda, the Africa Private Sector Coalition delivered its commitment statement at the Inaugural Africa Climate Summit (ACS23) held in Nairobi, Kenya. This summit was  part of the  climate weeks taking place globally in the lead up to the COP28 climate gathering in the United Arab Emirates in November.

The event, attended by more than twenty  African heads of state, the United Nations Secretary General and global dignitaries, was hosted and chaired by His Excellency, President William Ruto of Kenya. Dr. James Mwangi, Group Managing Director and CEO Equity Group Holdings presented the statement on behalf of the Africa Private Sector Coalition.

“We applaud the commitment of African states to address climate action and drive green growth and climate finance. The private sector in Africa has come together to stand with the governments of Africa side by side in the challenge of solving the impacts of climate change and to intentionally address the opportunities of the climate agenda,” said Dr. Mwangi. “We wanted this inaugural Africa Climate Summit to set out a singularity of voice for Africa across all stakeholders, with a sense of urgency that is required for the climate crisis we are facing,” he added.

Strong coalition

The `Africa private sector climate statement on the occasion of the inaugural Africa Climate Summit, dubbed –  Building Climate Action for Resilience and Green Growth –  brought together a strong coalition of partners representing a diverse group of sectors and actors. Founding signatories included :  Equity Group Holdings, ALN, Kenya Private Sector Alliance (KEPSA), the Commonwealth Enterprise and Investment Council (CWEIC), East African Business Council (EABC) and the  Kenya Association of Manufacturers (KAM). They  pledged their commitment at an official private sector breakfast  during the ACS23 week. Notably, the adoption of the statement was also witnessed by the UN Global Compact, Africa Business Leaders Coalition and the United Nations Resident Coordinators Office in Kenya.

Karim Anjarwalla, director of ALN, stated :  “Building climate action for resilience and green growth in Africa is not just a necessity; it is our shared responsibility. The private sector, in collaboration with governments and stakeholders, must pave the way for sustainable development that safeguards the future of our continent and the world. Our commitment today echoes our dedication to shaping a resilient, environmentally conscious Africa for generations to come.”

The goal  of the Africa private sector statement  was   to reflect on the roles and responsibilities of the private sector in climate mitigation and adaptation efforts, complementing government efforts as an equal partner.  The statement signified   support for the Africa Leaders Nairobi Declaration on Climate Change and Call to Action. It   will be carried forward into upcoming forums, including the United Nations General Assembly in New York, the World Bank/IMF Fall Meetings in Marrakesh and the COP28 summit in the UAE in November, among others.

The coalition is actively seeking signatories to create the largest strategic -private sector alliance for climate action. One of the most impactful and important provisions of the statement is the implementation of reporting mechanisms to annually measure private sector contributions to climate mitigation and adaptation efforts.  Carole Kariuki, CEO of the Kenya Private Sector Alliance said :  “The statement has been put together by the private sector with the aim of bringing  our voice  to the discussions on combating climate change. The objective is to rally the private sector to work together in building climate action for resilience and green growth.”

Collaboration

Collectively, the statement’s founding signatories agree that Africa is in a strong position to drive investment based on what the continent is bringing to the world’s table. The recent UNCTAD Economic Development in Africa Report 2023 cited the continent’s potential to become a major participant in global supply chains for high-technology sectors such as automobiles, mobile telephones, renewable energy and health care. The report further highlights Africa’s abundance of critical minerals, hydrogen energy opportunities, climate-smart agriculture solutions, commitment to sustainability, as well as a young, educated workforce and burgeoning middle class.

The coalition intends to collaborate with governments in line with the Nairobi Declaration to reform national and regional policies, fostering incentives for sustainable growth and innovations.. “The African private sector is being proactive, not reactive by setting this agenda for itself and the continent as the current methodology of assessing the risk of investment on the continent does not match its potential,” stated Rosie Glazebrook, CEO of the Commonwealth Enterprise and Investment Council.

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