The Finance Minister, Ken Ofori-Atta, has called for increased focus on the economic impact of climate change to developing nations.
He said a spotlight on the canker was needed to get the world and developed countries in particularly to fully appreciate the adverse effects of climate change to humanity and economies in particular.
Mr Ofori-Atta also met with the Director for the Africa Department of the International Monetary Fund (IMF), Abebe Aemro Selassie, to advance discussions on ongoing IMF-assisted programme negotiations with the fund.
Addressing the G-24 Ministers and Governors Meetings as part of ongoing World Bank/International Monetary Fund (IMF) Meetings in Washington D.C., Mr Ofori-Atta said over the past two decades, climate change had wiped off more than $525 billion from developing countries.
This, he said, made it imperative for urgent actions to tackle the menace.
The Finance Minister was addressing 108th Meeting of Ministers and Governors of the Group of 24 on the theme: ‘Securing a Sustained Post-Pandemic Recovery.’
The Finance Minister is leading a delegation from Ghana to the Annual Meetings of the World Bank/IMF in Washington D.C. of the United States of America.
The delegation comprises the Minister of State at the Ministry of Finance, Charle Adu Boahen, the Minister of Information, Kojo Oppong Nkrumah, the Bank of Ghana Governor (BoG), Dr Ernest Addison, and the First Deputy Governor, Dr Maxwell Opoku-Afari.
The delegation is also expected to advance negotiations with the IMF on a fund-assisted programme that addresses Ghana’s macroeconomic and structural challenges.
Addressing the G-24 Meetings said “there is the need to put a spotlight on the economic consequences of climate change, particularly as relates to developing countries who are the least contributors to climate change. “Climate change has wiped out a fifth of the wealth of climate vulnerable countries over the last two decades – meaning that vulnerable countries have lost approximately $525 billion because of anthropogenic global warming,” he said.
He said it was saddening to note that these losses, which were attributable to global warming as a result of human activity as opposed to the natural climate cycle.
Mr Ofori-Atta described the losses as horrific effects on lives and livelihoods.
Consequently, he said climate-vulnerable countries required an economic cooperation through climate prosperity plans.
He said the plan must facilitate the flow of climate financing into “our economies with a focus on building climate resilience in our economies, expanding on our adaptive capacity as we increase our mitigation efforts and increasing investments in disaster risk reduction and insurance.”
An annual event, this year’s World Bank/IMF Annual Meetings provides the world the platform to discuss critical areas where the international community and international financial institutions such as the IMF and the World Bank Group could scale up their support for emerging economies.
This forum comes against the backdrop of a confluence of adverse shocks heightened by debt vulnerabilities, persistent inflation, and deep concern about the impending impact of climate change.
As part of the discussions, it was agreed that Ghana’s negotiated program must reposition the country towards a resilient macroeconomic environment, whilst ensuring that the most vulnerable segments of the population are protected from the impact of any potential fiscal adjustments.
The second round of formal negotiations will continue after the Annual Meetings, between the Government of Ghana team, led by the Honourable Minister for Finance, Ofori-Atta; and the IMF team, led by the IMF Mission Chief, Stéphane Roudet.
The negotiations will prioritize the implementation of policies that create the conditions for a stable macroeconomic environment, sustainable growth and debt sustainability.