Distinguished participants, co-chairs of the Green Climate Fund board, Executive Director and board members,
Welcome to Oslo and to this first meeting of the initial resource mobilisation for the Green Climate Fund. I am glad that we have managed to meet here at such a short notice.
The scientific evidence is clear: global climate change is happening now. The latest IPCC report is even more compelling and worrying than the earlier ones.
We have to reduce greenhouse gas emissions and adapt to the inevitable consequences of climate change. This is costly, and climate finance must be made available to developing countries so that they can address these needs.
We have committed ourselves to scaling up climate finance in the coming years. Under the Copenhagen pledge, we – the developed countries – have set the goal of mobilising 100 billion US dollars per year by 2020. This is to be raised from public, private and innovative new sources.
Climate finance is a key element in the international response to climate change. While much is already being delivered through existing bilateral and multilateral channels, Norway has high expectations of the Green Climate Fund. We see the fund as the key channel for multilateral climate finance to developing countries in the coming years.
Setting up the Green Climate Fund through a multilateral process has not been easy. But it is now ready to receive, manage and disburse funds, and it is up to us all to ensure a successful initial capitalisation.
Action and money speak louder than words. Norway’s assistance to climate change mitigation and adaptation assistance has increased strongly over the last years up to levels close to 1 billion USD. We are committed to staying at a high level and will provide a substantial contribution to the Green Climate Fund.
I am happy to see so many interested actors here today. Some of you represent countries that are already supporting mitigation and adaptation in developing countries, and your continued leadership is crucial. I also see some newcomers. This is promising.
Having said this, I would have liked to see even more actors here today. We must ensure that the resource mobilisation process is as open and inclusive as possible. No country should feel excluded from joining our collective effort to make the fund a success. We must also seriously consider how to encourage the private sector to join this effort.
We are here to kick-off resource mobilisation for the fund. It is very positive that we are able to meet now, so soon after the last board meeting, and ahead of the Climate Summit in September. The objective is to finalise commitments to the initial resource mobilisation before COP20 in Lima. Time is therefore of the essence, and it should be used wisely and effectively. We must get down to business quickly so that we can move on to the pledging stage.
We must be ambitious, and at the same time flexible and pragmatic. Expectations are high.
I wish you a productive meeting and every success in this important work.
I would now like to give the floor to my colleague Tine Sundtoft, Minister of Climate and Environment.