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The last decade has seen unprecedented rapid worsening changes in climate which have affected billions of people and set back economic achievements and poverty reduction targets.  The IPCC reported that human activities have caused about 1.00C of global warming above pre industrial levels. In what is now looming as a race against time, access to climate finance is therefore urgent to enable developing and middle income countries to protect its people and ecosystems.

For the Philippines, there is a clear pressing need for new and additional funding commensurate to the scale imposed by the climate crisis, based on country driven climate action plans utilizing mechanisms that deliver more effective, efficient and predictable funding.  A study by Frankfurt Institute/UN Environment entitled: A Financial Sector Review – Activities on Climate Financing in the Philippines, recommended that the best option that would bring in the greatest returns would be to assist the partner financial institutions which already have existing portfolios and experience in green finance and its retailer partners in building up their internal capacities and knowledge for green finance lending and promotion.

The accreditation of Land Bank with GCF therefore, is a significant step in making it eligible to access international global finance, allow it to avail of concessional financing instruments to catalyze private sector investments. Its accreditation also meant that it has met the minimum requirements for safeguards, gender considerations, and other systems necessary to serve as a responsible lending institution for green finance.

Land Bank’s accreditation has been approved for: (i) category A risk level; (ii) medium project size; and (iii) specialization on project management, on lending/blending and grant mechanism. As a Direct Access Entity, Land Bank can channel GCF resources to programmes and projects related to agriculture, fisheries, micro-finance, energy access through small and medium enterprises (MSMEs) and local government units (LGUs), sustainable transport, housing and tourism. 

UNDP DAE Specialist and Land Bank of the Philippines seeking inputs from Department of Transport on GCF project formulation

The Frankfurt study likewise recommended that for greater impact, it is essential to focus on a specific industry sector(s). With the support of UNDP in developing a project idea note for a transport project,  Land Bank will be able to focus on this sector, and catalyze financing for MSMEs, including engaging with LGUs in channeling their resources for green investments.

UNDP is a proud partner of Land Bank in this endeavor of making crucial funding be available to those entities willing to be a part of our collective effort of change the course of climate change. UNDP provided technical assistance to Land Bank, leading up to its successful accreditation, in the form of formulating policies, gender trainings, preparing project idea notes and establishing stakeholder process. With this, UNDP is committed to continue helping Land Bank and other financial institutions in bridging the financial gap to contribute to a greener and sustainable future.

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