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November 29, 2022

SSDH BRIEFING: Decoding COP27 Climate Finance Talks on KPI-linked Sovereign Debt


The 27th Conference of Parties (COP27) of the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change ended a day late on Sunday November 20th, 2022.

Within the context of fractious geopolitics, made more fraught by spiralling energy costs, food insecurity and escalating debt levels achieving consensus either on fossil fuel reductions or nationally determined contributions (NDCs) was always going to be a challenge. Given the additional challenge of limited official development assistance (ODA) available for non-Ukraine targeted programmes, it was a noteworthy achievement that COP 27 concluded with agreement on the creation of an international Loss and Damage fund to assist low and middle income (LMICs) countries in covering the costs of climate change impacts.

The sovereign debt crisis was the thread that ran through every discussion. It was acknowledged that all African countries and most LMICs are either already in, or imminently facing, a debt crisis. Many panels highlighted the need for, and examples of, debt restructuring linked to climate and nature key performance indicators (KPIs)... 

[read full briefing at link below]

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