Saudi pledges financial support for its region and sub-Saharan Africa

Middle East Green Inititative gets $2.5 billion as Cop27 wrangles over money continue

Tuesday 08 November 2022 14:00 GMT

Saudi Arabia’s Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman yesterday committed $2.5 billion to support climate action in the Middle East and northern Africa. The pledge came as he addressed the second Middle East Green Initiative (MGI) meeting at the Cop27 conference in Sharm el-Sheikh, Egypt.

Within Saudi, the Kingdom has already committed £165 billion as part of the Saudi Green Inititiative. The first days of Cop 27 have been dominated by wrangles over the extent to which wealthy countries support poorer ones to deal with the impact of climate change.

The Crown Prince said the Saudi investment will support “concerted regional efforts”  to “reduce emissions and remove more than 670 million tons of carbon dioxide equivalent”.

Those emissions account for 10 percent of the global total.

A new MGI directorate will be based in Riyadh.

The Crown Prince also unveiled new measures to capture carbon emissions and support the ‘regreening’ of a region dominated by desert and rising temperatures.

Saudi crown prince boosts climate change support for region (none)

He said the Kingdom will build of one of the largest Carbon Capture, Usage and Storage (CCUS) hubs in the world. This will capture 44 million tons of CO, equivalent to 15% of the Kingdom’s current NDC, by 2035. The NDC, or Nationally Defined Contribution, is a UN-agreed target agreed by individual countries.

The summit reaffirmed its commitment to plant 50 billion trees across the region to combat desertification and land degradation across west, central and south Asia, North Africa and Sub-Saharan Africa.

It was also announced that Saudi’s powerful sovereign wealth fund, the Public Investment Fund (PIF) aims to reach net zero by 2050, claiming to be the first sovereign wealth fund in the Middle East and one of the first globally to do so.

The PIF will use  the £492 billion generated from the kingdom’s oil wealth to support green and circular carbon economy efforts and technology.

Cop-27 host, Egypt’s President Abdel-Fattah El-Sisi, said the initiative “represents an opportunity to connect research centers in member states in ways that integrate research and applied programmes in climate change technology.”

“We all realise that time isn’t on our side,” Mr. el-Sisi added.

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