Sunday 3 March 2024

The food, water and climate nexus

COP28: Citi report to shed light on mobilising climate finance

DUBAI, December 1, 2023

As the 28th Conference of the Parties to the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change (COP28) got under way in Dubai (November 30-December 12), Citi Global Perspectives and Solutions (GPS) will publish two reports titled ‘Unlocking Climate and Development Finance: Creating Bankable Projects’ and ‘Food, Water, Climate Nexus.’
The first report looks at how to increase the flow of money into the geographies, industries, and projects where it can make a difference while generating a suitable risk-adjusted return.
Traditionally, the explanation for the insufficient mobilisation of finance has been the mismatch between the risk appetite of the capital and the risk profile of the projects. While facilitating capital flows is well understood, more bankable and investable projects are needed.
“While the mismatch challenge is at the heart of the issue, it is a relatively simple one in essence,” said Jason Channell, Head of Sustainable Finance, Citi Global Insights.
“If all players have the right capacity-building, education, understanding, and will – and at the same time can create an enabling environment, the challenge should be surmountable, with each player understanding what others need to fulfil their part of the bargain and their responsibilities to stakeholders,” he added.
The second report focuses on the connections between food, water and climate – known as the food, water and climate nexus. The report analyses how climate change impacts water supplies, it can also impact global food production and hence global food security. 
The report shows that several countries and regions important to the production of staple crops, which make up two-thirds of the world’s food calories, have a significant risk of water stress under a business-as-usual climate change scenario.
“History has shown that any reduction in crop yields for staple crops can have a material impact on global food security. Higher food prices especially for staple crops important for billions of people lead to an increase in hunger, undernourishment, economic damage and political instability,” said Liz Curmi, Global Thematic Analyst, Citi Global Insights. 
“Business revenues are also likely to suffer: the Citi GPS analysis estimates that over $3 trillion of public companies’ revenues are at risk,” she added.
The good news is that there are plenty of solutions available. To make this happen, the world needs good policy and economic instruments and to build partnerships across multiple key actors, with farmers and producers at the centre of these discussions. 
“Humanity has reached a tipping point – we need to now put water back at the top of our sustainability agenda. If we don’t, we will be sleepwalking into a food and water crisis,” Liz Curmi concluded.
Citi’s Delegation at COP28
Citi’s largest ever COP delegation comprises senior leaders representing businesses across the firm that are working to accelerate the transition to a low-carbon economy.
Citi is both a strategic partner with the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) and an associate pathway partner of COP28, during which the bank will be hosting events with global stakeholders such as the World Food Programme and the World Bank.
Since April 2022, Citi has been leading on key green, sustainability-linked and social issuances across the Middle East and Africa, including:
  • African Development Fund’s €1.2 billion ($) social bond issuance
  • Debut $3 billion multi-tranche green offering by Public Investment Fund
  • Inaugural $1 billion sustainable bond offering by Government of the Emirate of Sharjah
  • $2.5 billion equivalent sustainability-linked offering by Teva Pharmaceuticals
  • $500 million green hybrid offering by Majid Al Futtaim
“At least $125 trillion in capital investment is needed for the global economy to reach net-zero by 2050,” said Ebru Pakcan, Cluster and Banking Head for the Middle East and Africa. “Together with globally responsible partners in private and public sectors, Citi will continue to support clients fully on their transition journey.”
Citi is present in 29 markets in the Middle East and Africa region, and offers services including corporate, investment and commercial banking, capital markets, sales and trading, transactions services, and wealth management. – TradeArabia News Service


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