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Nov 14, 2022

Minister Habet Gives Address on Inaction on Climate Finance

It was another busy day for Climate Change Minister Orlando Habet and the team of Belizean negotiators at the twenty-seventh annual United Nations Conference of the Parties in Sharm El Sheikh, Egypt.  Minister Habet is now joined by C.E.O. Doctor Kenrick Williams, who has also hit the ground running, sitting in on negotiations around climate finance.  Aside from scheduled appearances and networking opportunities for and on behalf of the country, Minister Habet was also a key speaker at two main events hosted by Belize, in collaboration with the governments of Nigeria and Taiwan. The latter occurred earlier in the day, as the Government of Belize in partnership with the Taiwan Research Institute, the Alliance of Small Island States and others. In his speech, Minister Habet says that climate finance continues to be a challenge, despite the historic Paris Agreement of 2016.


Orlando Habet

Orlando Habet, Minister of Sustainable Development, Climate Change and Disaster Risk Management

“We have been discussing the finance-related issues under the UNFCCC process over many years, but with limited success as far as the vulnerable developing countries are concerned. If I may highlight the case of Belize, we are highly vulnerable to the adverse effects of climate change especially with frequent and intensified extreme weather events. A few days ago, Belize was affected by Hurricane Lisa and it is just a fraction of what we undergo as a developing country in the Caribbean where we expend anywhere between five to ten percent of annual budget on a yearly basis. Though we raise our voice for increase climate finance commitments and froes based on historical responsibilities, our efforts in climate action have always been ambitious. Belize was affected badly by an extended drought in 2018, affecting the lives and the livelihoods of a large portion of Belizeans. It also brought our economic growth to a negative trajectory which was later amplified by the pandemic. Amidst all the economic hardships, Belize updated its NDC targets with a higher ambition level, broadening the coverage and the depth of its actions. We have estimated the total cost of implementation until 2030 as one point nine billion U.S. dollars out of which we have secured finances of approximately U.S. three hundred million dollars. Belize has a daunting task of securing this broad gap in climate finance of one point six billion U.S. dollars. Moreover, this figure does not account for the potential incremental nature of climate change impacts, human and institutional capacity enhancement requirements and others. Knowing that bridging of this financial gap is challenging, Belize has taken few additional steps forward to make ourselves prepared for implementing our ambitious climate change priorities. We have carried out a comprehensive climate finance landscape study for Belize with a detail analysis for climate finance amongst sources, instruments, sectors, etc. to identify our strengths to identify our weaknesses, challenges and opportunities in accessing climate finance. Based on the landscape assessment, we have developed climate finance strategy to guide our pathway to access climate finance in an integrated and strategic manner. We have strengthened our local institutional systems related to climate finance while strengthening partnerships with our development partners in building the local capacity.”

Viewers please note: This Internet newscast is a verbatim transcript of our evening television newscast. Where speakers use Kriol, we attempt to faithfully reproduce the quotes using a standard spelling system.

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