Rashaed Esson

Staff Writer

#UnitedKingdom, September 9, 2023 – The UK Government has signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) in the amount of £2.7 million with the Caribbean Community Climate Change Centre (CCCCC), for work to be done under the Small Island Developing States Capacity and Resilience (SIDAR) Programme, staying true to its COP26 promise to aid in fortifying Climate Resilience and Finance in the Caribbean region. This is according to a Press Release by the UK Government.

The signing was done on September 6th by David Rutley, Minister for the Americas and the Caribbean and Colin Young, Executive Director for the Caribbean Community Climate Change Centre (CCCCC).

The Government in the press release, referred to the SIDAR programme saying that it “represents delivery on part of the UK’s overall commitment of £11.6 billion for climate finance, with a specific aim to support adaptation and resilience in Small Island Developing States (SIDS),” adding that it “aims to augment access to climate finance and support programmatic acceleration of climate resilient actions in selected Caribbean countries.”

Additionally, as informed by the release, the CCCCC will act as a channel through which the programme will help address the road blocks the Caribbean SIDS face in efforts to plan for, ” accessing, and effectively utilizing climate finance.”

The aim of the programme, it said, is to “facilitate sustainable increase in the flow of climate finance, enhance project development and implementation capabilities, and support simplification of the multilateral funding processes with which they must engage.”

Not only that, the release pointed out that the programme will see to the establishment of a Help Desk to lend aid to Member States, catering to the development as well as the implementation of climate change projects. In fact, it is expected to bring about sustainable climate actions throughout the region through promoting “collaboration, knowledge sharing, and strategic leveraging of resources.”

The CCCCC, partnering with the CARICOM Member States, will provide support in the development of funding proposals aligned to national priorities “for submission to various financial mechanisms under the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change and other multilateral and bilateral financing partners.”

That in mind, with the UK backing and contributing to the efforts of the CCCCC, CARICOM member states will be strengthened in tackling the challenges they face in accessing climate finance, according to the UK Government in a press release.

And, in continued efforts, the release informed that “Non-Official Development Assistance (ODA) eligible Member States will be invited to participate in lesson learning and virtual training activities.”

Furthermore, the UK’s, as the release described, “concerted effort”, is anticipated to assist the Caribbean in accessing a large sum of US$50 million over the next three years.  “Dedicated resources will be allocated to beneficiary countries for project preparation grants, including readiness activities, with a target of mobilizing US$3 million in readiness support during the programme’s implementation,” the Government added in the release.

Optimism for the newly developed partnership is in the air as expressed by Rutley at the September 6th signing of the MOU.

“The implementation of this initiative under the SIDAR programme marks an important moment in our collective efforts to combat the impacts of climate change,” he said, later adding that “through close collaboration with” the  CCCCC, “the UK is delivering on its promise to help unlock greater amounts of climate finance, strengthen resilience, and secure a sustainable future for SIDS, including those in the Caribbean.”

Colin, who also gave words on the partnership highlighted that he is “pleased to implement the SIDAR programme in the Caribbean,” adding that it will increase both the flow and scale of climate finance to CARICOM Member States to help build their resilience to escalating and adverse impacts of climate change, as well as strengthen their capacity to effectively utilize these resources.”

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