The Fiji delegation at COP26 in Glasgow Scotland is hoping that world leaders will agree to a new mechanism making it easier to access funding for climate change adaptation.
Minister responsible for Climate Change, Aiyaz Sayed- Khaiyum speaking to FBC News in Scotland has said that delays on this issue are a threat to small island states that need financing.
“What we are saying is there needs to be new mechanisms built in terms of accessibility to those types of finances and they need to affordable, and available fairly quickly. Adaptation is quite big and as you know, as far as global funds available for climate change, very little has been going to adaptation. Mitigation is important, but adaptation is critically more important”.
Sayed-Khaiyum says private sector involvement in climate adaptation has been visibly lacking, and funding can be used to bridge that gap.
He also says Fiji has been able to speak at COP26 from a position of power, because of everything that’s been achieved locally.
Fiji has itself made a number of commitments with practical outcomes in terms of Nationally Determined Outcomes, the Climate Change Act, relocation guidelines and various other mechanisms. That gives Fiji a particular lead. We are particularly keen on ensuring that there’s affordable and accessible finance available”.
The minister has indicated that climate change negotiations aren’t always easy be it dealing with world leaders or international financing organisations.
“Fiji has been deemed to be a middle income country, so as a result, Fiji was not eligible for concessional financing – for example – from World Bank. We’ve been knocking on their doors for about four years and finally now, we’re getting development finance at concessional rates because they‘ve factored in our vulnerability to climate change”.
Sayed-Khaiyum says a number of island states at COP26 have been lamenting the fact that it is almost impossible to access climate change funding.