“Convening Private Sector Investment in Climate-Smart Commodity Production in Southeast Asia” Workshop images
Images from the “Convening Private Sector Investment in Climate-Smart Commodity Production in Southeast Asia” Workshop held March 29, 2017 in Bangkok, Thailand.

Scaling Climate Finance for Sustainable Landscapes through Private-Public Dialogue

By Mikell O’Mealy, Charlotte Mack-Heller, Eric Hyman

Many countries in Southeast Asia have set ambitious targets for transitioning to a low-carbon, climate-resilient future, including improved management of agriculture, forestry, and other land uses. However, the financing required to achieve these targets far exceeds existing public sector resources and international development assistance. As a result, greater private investment will be required to achieve these targets. Although private sector finance for renewable energy has been increasing rapidly, challenges remain in scaling up financing for sustainable landscapes.

On March 29, 2017, USAID/Asia, the United Nations Food and Agriculture Organization, and the Asia Low Emissions Development Strategies Partnership (Asia LEDS) hosted a regional workshop on “Convening Private Sector Investment in Climate-Smart Commodity Production in Southeast Asia” in Bangkok. The USAID-funded Climate Economic Analysis for Development, Investment and Resilience (CEADIR) Activity organized and implemented this workshop.

Approximately 90 private and public sector representatives participated, including multinational and domestic corporations, financial institutions, investment firms, small- and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs), commercial commodity certification platforms, and government agencies. Workshop participants discussed their experiences in promoting private, climate-smart investment in key agricultural and forestry product value chains and identified challenges that limit this investment. They recommended the following priority actions to help overcome these challenges:

Access to financing: Improve SMEs and primary producers’ access to financing for climate-smart agriculture and forestry through aggregation, loan guarantees, and other de-risking mechanisms.
Policies: Reduce barriers and increase incentives for climate-smart financing, and enhance private sector engagement in developing, implementing, monitoring, and evaluating policies, regulations, financing, and support.
Communications: Facilitate regular dialogues among national and subnational policy makers, businesses, and small-scale producers.
Data: Increase resources and capacity for measurement, reporting, and verification of greenhouse gas emission reductions to document progress toward national climate change commitments.

After the workshop, CEADIR identified country-specific needs for increasing private investment and public-private sector coordination for climate-smart agriculture and forestry in Cambodia, Indonesia, Philippines, and Vietnam. CEADIR also analyzed business models for private sector financing of sustainable rice and forest production in the region. Utilizing this analysis, CEADIR collaborated with FAO in convening a second regional workshop in Bangkok on October 10-12, 2017, engaging more than 60 private and public sector representatives, including representatives from Bangladesh, Cambodia, Indonesia, Laos, Burma, the Philippines, and Thailand. During the workshop, CEADIR highlighted private sector recommendations for accelerating climate-smart finance. It also supported governments in developing country-specific strategies with priority policy and program changes to increase private investment in low-emission, sustainable agriculture and forestry. In addition, CEADIR identified market needs and opportunities for donors and development partners to showcase more sustainable business models and to support public-private blended finance solutions. CEADIR analyses also demonstrated the potential for private sector climate-smart investments to help countries achieve their national climate change targets (i.e., Nationally Determined Contributions).

CEADIR is implemented by Crown Agents-USA and Abt Associates. The activity receives core funding from the USAID/Washington Economic, Growth, Education, and Environment Bureau (E3). It is managed by the Economic Policy and Global Climate Change offices.

For more information:

Strategic Objective
Climate Finance, Forestry, Private Sector Engagement, Sustainable Landscapes
Mikell O’Mealy

Mikell O’Mealy

Mikell O’Mealy is a Senior Associate with Abt Associates’ International Development Division working on global climate change, natural resources management, and governance with countries, communities, and development partners in the Asia Pacific region and worldwide. She has 20 years of experience building capacity and cooperation at international, regional, and local levels. She has an M.S. in Marine Resources Management and a B.S. in Biology from Oregon State University.

Charlotte Mack-Heller

Charlotte Mack-Heller

Charlotte Mack-Heller, a Senior Associate with Abt Associates’ International Development Division, works on issues related to resilience, adaptation, and land use. She has worked closely with diverse stakeholders in 15 countries to build resilience and sustainability across a range of economically critical sectors, such as urban systems, infrastructure, agriculture, energy, water, and the coastal environment. She holds a M.P.P. and M.S. from the University of Michigan and a B.S. in Environmental Science from the University of Delaware.

Eric Hyman

Dr. Eric Hyman is an Economist in the USAID Economic Growth, Education, and Environment Bureau’s Economic Policy Office.  Dr. Hyman was previously Economist and Environmental Officer at the U.S. African Development Foundation and Chief of Program Evaluation at EnterpriseWorks Worldwide/Appropriate Technology International.  He has a Ph.D and M.R.P in Environmental Planning from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill and a B.A. in Economics and Environmental Science from the University of Virginia.

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