One of the greatest challenges of an investor is that of information and comparison among investment opportunities. A new training programme for the public and private sector which was recently launched in Ghana, tries to remedy this situation with the overall goal to accelerate private sector investment into Ghana’s NDC Implementation Plan and the related low carbon actions.
The training programme, which will act as an in-country incubation hub, has been developed and delivered by The Center for Climate Strategies (CCS) in partnership with the UNDP NDC Support Programme. The training employs a new, innovative approach that puts the participants through an intensive process of re-thinking low carbon development through the lens of consumers, businessess, and the financial community, with the aim to fill gaps in cooperation between policy and financial players.
I had initially expected a training on how to turn climate actions into business models that would appeal to the Ghanaian business community and international investors. However, when I saw how diverse the participants were - private sector actors, financial sector representatives and government officials - I quickly realized that there must be a different and more holistic approach to capacity development and learning.
Therefore, instead of looking at isolated mitigation solutions and small flows of funding, initiatives are considered for their transformational impact potential relative to long-term development and planning, as well as opportunities for linking public -and potentially international funding - with private sector investments. This holistic approach can only be achieved when all participants work together toward a truly ambitious goal that can be transformed into market actions with compelling public and private benefits.
The need for a holistic approach can easily be seen on hand of Ghana’s NDC Implementation Plan, which maps out a set of 31 ambitious climate actions with a budgeted cost of US$22.6 billion over 10 years, along with a set of other complementary plans to feed into these objectives across all sectors (a combined list of over 180 actions). This complex interlinkage raises the potential to stimulate even greater levels of investment.
Piloting the new approach in Ghana offers a learning-by-doing opportunity on how to transform projects into a “market-ready product” through project aggregation and standardization as a “green” Ghanaian-tailored product, that will be financially structured to access public and private finance.
The product will be designed to meet investor requirements for risks and returns and social impacts, and will be analyzed jointly with the private sector and the financial community using state of the art integrated procedures.
It will include GHG emission reduction impacts and the socio-economic impacts in relation to the SDGs, discussed with the inter-ministerial SDGs implementation committee chaired by the Ministry of Planning and other key partners such as Ministry of Trade and Industry, Health, Local Governments and others.
Through on-site trainings and interactive sessions supported by an online learning management system, the general training programme will integrate country level results into a country-customized curriculum, that will be incubated in the Council for Scientific and Industrial Research (CSIR).
The Ministry of Environment, Science, Technology and Innovation together with the Ghana Environmental Protection Agency hosted the four-day workshop that launched the training, and engaged the Council for Scientific and Industrial Research (CSIR). Over 40 business leaders, policy advisors, representatives of financial institutions, entrepreneurs, programme and product developers, and government officials actively participated in the training through a ‘learning by doing’ format that combines instruction with interactive exercises.
CCS is a non-profit organization based in Washington DC, with extensive global experience in working with government and private sector stakeholders through participatory and inclusive processes to enhance and implement low carbon actions. Financial support for the development and delivery of the training programme is provided by the New York Community Trust.
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