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The Caribbean Development Bank (CDB) continues to work with countries within the region to construct resilience recognising the impact of climate change on all features of economies says Mr. Ian Durant, the Bank’s Director of Economics.
“Climate change represents considered one of the best challenges in human history…It is not any longer a hypothesis, but a incontrovertible fact that Small Island Developing States (SIDS) are amongst essentially the most vulnerable to climate change, with Caribbean SIDS especially being exposed to more frequent and intense climate events. Paradise as we realize it is under severe threat,” he stated.
Speaking on the Conference on the Economy hosted by the University of the West Indies, Saint Augustine on November 3, Mr. Durant highlighted the Bank’s interventions in the realm and advocated for diverse strategies to safeguard the region’s future.
“Sustainable sources of funding for disaster risk management, including increasing access to concessional resources and targeted instruments, is a critical imperative to assist the region construct adaptive and climate-resilient infrastructure,” he said.
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Constructing resilience also involves advanced budgeting and planning, The Director indicated, adding that disaster risk management strategies within the economic domain have to be developed and might include natural disaster and pandemic escape clauses in financing instruments, in addition to budget reallocation, external credit, temporary tax increases and donor assistance.
In keeping with Mr. Durant “In small, open economies… where foreign exchange earnings are critical to the orderly functioning of the economy, the interruption and prolonged lack of earnings erode foreign exchange buffers, interrupt livelihoods, create unemployment and usher in additional complications for macroeconomic management, often requiring countries to hunt foreign exchange support, reorder development priorities and postpone the implementation of medium-term strategies.”
The CDB Executive also said that the Bank recognises that climate change is affecting not only the expansion performance and financial and foreign exchange buffers, but it’s also posing challenges for labour markets and eroding an already fragile physical capital stock.
The finance focused initiatives would due to this fact seek to further curb the negative impact of climate events within the Caribbean.
Employment, income generation, the natural environment, quality of life, food security and production, were among the many areas Mr. Durant cited as being negatively affected by climate change. Consequently, while providing financing for climate resilience, CDB has also intervened by strengthening resilience through Disaster Risk Reduction and Disaster Risk Management.
The Bank has mainstreamed climate change and Disaster Risk Management into its operations; mobilised increased levels of concessionary resources; improved climate resilience in vulnerable sectors; strengthened the environment to support climate resilient measures; and improved the capability in its Borrowing Member Countries to deliver on this area.
Moreover, CDB has provided technical assistance to support improvements and construct resilience capability in critical areas reminiscent of physical infrastructure through constructing code development, and implementation alongside partner agencies.
Moreover, CDB has actively pursued research in priority areas to help in constructing resilience through expanding access to concessional finance.
It has advanced the Internal Resilience Capability (IRC) and Recovery Duration Adjuster (RDA) Vulnerability and Resilience Framework to the international community. These tools incorporate each vulnerability and resilience in addressing development challenges and supply a more equitable yardstick for providing access to concessional finance.
SOURCE: Caribbean Development Bank
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