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UK minister commits to supporting green finance across Africa

Andrew Mitchell outlines the UK’s commitment to reforming the international financial system so that it can deliver the green finance needed to fight extreme poverty

Minister of State for International Development Andrew Mitchell has committed to supporting the delivery of green finance across Africa at the African Development Bank’s (AfDB) Annual Meetings in Egypt.

The Cabinet Minister gave a speech at the conference in Sharm el-Sheikh outlining the UK’s commitment to reforming the international financial system so that it can deliver the green finance needed to fight extreme poverty and tackle climate change.

He announced that the US$2 billion Room to Run guarantee, which the UK announced at COP26, has unlocked funding for two new climate resilient water infrastructure projects in Egypt and Senegal.

Speaking after the visit, Minister Andrew Mitchell said: “Countries across Africa are facing some of the most devastating impacts of climate change but historically have received only a small proportion of the green finance available.

“The UK is committed to changing that through our agenda to reform the International Financial System and support for the African Development Bank’s vital work. Egypt is a close partner for the UK and I was delighted to be able to meet with Ambassador Loza to thank him for Egypt’s support in evacuating British Nationals from Sudan.”

The project in Egypt, worth almost £70 million, will expand the capacity of a water treatment plant so it can provide clean recycled water to serve 70,000 acres of new arable land, benefiting 5 million more people than at present.

In Senegal, funding worth more than £16 million will support a project to improve access to clean water and sanitation services to 1.45 million people through the creation of more than 13,000 new latrines, 5 surface water treatment plants and a 70-kilometre sewage network which will serve more than 250,000 households.

The Minister also met with AfDB President Akinwumi Adesina and counterparts from Ghana, Senegal, Egypt, the Democratic Republic of Congo and Somalia to discuss how to ensure that finance from the Bank can reach countries at risk of climate-related disasters more quickly and effectively.

The minister last month set out his new vision for the UK’s international development work, saying the climate and development crises “are not a choice, but two sides of the same coin which need to be resolved together”.

Following the conference, the minister also met with a range of counterparts to discuss key regional issues. Meeting with Egypt’s Assistant Foreign Minister for Africa, Ambassador Hamdi Loza, Minister Andrew Mitchell discussed the need for all international parties to work together to seek a swift and effective resolution to the violence in Sudan and thanked the Ambassador for Egypt’s support in the evacuation of British Nationals.

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