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Speech by Per Bolund at COP21-Ministerial Meeting on Financing Climate Change Adaptation in Least Developed Countries
6 December 2015, Paris
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Excellences, colleges, distinguished guests, ladies and gentlemen,
I would like to thank the under-secretary-general Acharya and ms Todd from the ONE campaign for organising for organizing this important event and for inviting me to address you here today. Few issues could be more important.
Climate change is the challenge of our time – it affects all countries, but the consequences are worst for the poorest and most vulnerable. Addressing the needs of the least developed countries in adapting to climate change must be at the core of our common efforts to combat climate change and its impacts.
Climate change is not about something in the future. It happened yesterday and it is happening now. Words need to be backed up by action. This is not a matter of choice, but a matter of survival. Sweden is committed to assume its share of responsibility.
Here in Paris we need a strong outcome. We are aiming for a global, fair and legally binding agreement that over time will keep the average global temperature rise as far below two degrees Celsius as possible. The developed countries should lead the way by making ambitious commitments.
It is essential that the voices of LDCs are acknowledged and listened to in the negotiating room. Sweden will continue to act as a bridge builder and promote the perspectives of LDCs. I am pleased that my Government has been able to contribute financially to the negotiation capabilities of the Least Developed Countries.
Sweden will show leadership on climate change mitigation and we intend to be one of the world's first fossil-free countries, with zero net emissions of greenhouse gases by 2050. We challenge other countries and actors to do the same.
Sweden has taken a leading role in climate finance and we remain firmly committed to the goal of mobilising 100 billion USD annually by 2020. Our contribution of 580 mUSD to the Green Climate Fund is the most ambitious commitment per capita. Sweden is also one of the largest donors to the Adaptation Fund, the Least Developed Countries Fund and the Global Environmental Facility. Next year we intend to nearly double our multilateral climate support to developing countries, including 17 million USD to the Adaptation Fund and 11,5 million USD to the Least Developed Countries Fund. I can promise you that our engagement will remain strong.
It is positive that the Green Climate Fund has a clear focus on least developed countries and that the Least Developed Countries Fund has demonstrated its ability to play a vital role in supporting adaptation efforts by countries.
We welcome the pledges to the LDCF made at the meeting here in Paris on 30 November, of around USD 248 million.
The issue of access to climate finance is vital. Effective absorption is a key factor when considering how funding access by LDC's can be improved. Increased direct access has been a welcome reform over the last several years. At the same time, the role of international organisations in project planning, capacity-building and other areas will continue to be crucial given capacity constraints that often exists in LDC's.
Sweden is continuously working within the boards of the larger climate funds to make the financial means more readily accessible. those most in need, should be first in line.
We look forward to working with all of you for resilient and safe LDCs.
And we will continue to back up our words with action. Thank you.