Statement delivered by H.E. Neal Rijkenberg, Minister of Finance, Eswatini
V20 MINISTERIAL DIALOGUE X
16 April 2023
H.E. Neal Rijkenberg, Minister of Finance, Eswatini
I’ll also skip my script and just I felt it might be valuable to give a quick example of the week in the sense that we came here, myself and my team this week from Eswatini, a small landlocked country in Southern Africa, which we felt was a great opportunity for us to see if we can unlock green energy.
Our country currently imports about 80% of its energy mainly from fossil fuel resources. And we have enough internal resources to be able to produce green energy 100%, but the cost of energy is slightly higher than what we’re buying from. Hence, we are looking for possible debts for carbon, debt for climate change swap to be able to close those gaps so that it doesn’t impact the Swati people directly and we can actually move over 100% within 3-1/2 to 4 years what it would take us.
Even between our agenda we’ve had a few discussions during the week, but we’re going to be leaving today without much traction going down this road. And so hence, and it’s partly our fault, not knowing exactly where to have the right discussion at our place, but hence just to call upon V20.
And I think the three main elements that one ends up with in the document is to formalize the carbon markets for us to be able to really have a clear path in loss and damage. And an independent secretariat, I really believe will help us tremendously as member countries to be able to come, have very focused discussions, very focused agenda items, and come up with outcomes.
Thank you very much.