Catalyzing climate finance and investment in Asia and the Pacific

By Climate Champions | May 16, 2023

Trillions of dollars worth of investments are needed each year to achieve the rapid, far-reaching transformations required to address the impact of the climate crisis. In doing so, it would also meet the UNFCCC’s objectives, the Paris Agreement’s goals, and the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development. 

Unlocking access to public and private climate finance, especially in developing countries, is critical to achieving this.

Last year, the COP27 Presidency and the five United Nations Regional Commissions, together with the UN Climate Change High-Level Champions, jointly convened a series of five Regional Finance Forums to demonstrate that a promising pipeline of projects exists across developing countries and to bring them to the attention of prospective financiers with capital to deploy. 

Overall, over 450 projects, programs, funds, and enterprises requiring approximately USD $600bn in financing were identified from various sources in the run-up to, during and after the Forums. Fifty of these, aggregating to approximately USD $90bn in funding requirements, featured in the UN Compendium of Climate-Related Initiatives launched at COP27.

Separately, the Climate Champions’ Extended Compendium of Climate-Related Initiatives was launched in collaboration with the UN Regional Commissions, totalling over USD $120bn in funding requirements. The full list of 450+ projects can be accessed via the Climate Champions Master Project List of Climate-Related Initiatives

This year, the Forums aim to build on these successful outcomes by convening project proponents with prospective financiers and investors to advance these projects.

On 17 May, the first Forum will take place in Bangkok, hosted by the UN’s Economic and Social Commission for Asia and the Pacific (ESCAP), in collaboration with COP27 and COP28 Presidencies and the High-Level Champions. 

Examples of some of the projects to be presented at the Forum include:

  • Supporting Dhaka City Corporation (Bangladesh) to develop a 182-acre hydro-eco park in Dhaka accessible by 3 million people, consisting of 11 zones with several facilities.
  • Driving a just energy transition with UNICEF to deploy low emission cooking, heating and insulation products to 8,000 Mongolian households living in traditional dwellings and detached houses in urban areas.
  • Implementing reforestation of degraded land and conservation of existing forests in the Indonesian tropics. Together with Fair Ventures, this project aims to improve the livelihood of local communities and for both climate mitigation and adaptation.
  • Mountain Hazelnut is seeking funding to build a local hazelnut industry with 20,000 smallholder farming households in Bhutan.

With respect to improved visibility to investors, a Mongolian energy transition project sponsor said: “We have often been constrained by our limited resources to focus on meeting with investors. Thanks to this effort, we have supporters to advocate for our work and create visibility into the work that we are doing on ground”.

A sponsor of the hydro-eco park spoke on how the Forums are lowering the transaction costs for the project, saying: “Earlier this year, we set a goal to raise funding to scale our efforts but have had little success due to limited capacity to meet with investors. Through this work, we have been able to supercharge our efforts by getting support to meet with a targeted group of investors”. 

The Bangkok Forum will also aim to align public and private finance to improve the policy and regulatory environment to mobilise finance. Specifically, it will look at how ministers can build rigorous regulatory frameworks and how the private finance sector can create innovative sustainable solutions aligned with the global net zero and adaptation targets

Read the full details and attendee list in the agenda here

Register your virtual attendance here for the first Regional Finance Forum in Bangkok, Thailand (17 May). 

 The next Forum will take place in:

  • Frankfurt, Germany (4 July) – Sponsored by DZ Bank and hosted by the United Nations Economic Commission for Europe and the UN Climate Change High-Level Champions.

Additional Forums to be confirmed and co-hosted by the UN Climate Change High-Level Champions:

  • Africa – United Nations Economic Commission for Africa
  • Latin America – United Nations Economic Commission for Latin America and the Caribbean
  • Arab Region – United Nations Economic and Social Commission for Western Asia

For any questions, please contact