News / 14 december 2018

Raju Pandit Chettri meets Minister Kaag: finance for women-led local climate action is critical!

During the 24th Conference of the Parties (COP24) of the UNFCCC taking place in Katowice, Both ENDS partner Raju Pandit Chettri – director of Prakriti Resources Centre in Nepal - was one of the selected Southern leaders to meet with the Dutch Minister of Development Cooperation and Foreign Trade, Sigrid Kaag. We asked Raju about his expectations, messages, Kaag's responses and his experiences of the meeting.

Climate finance must reach the local level

Raju: "I expected to be able to participate in a frank exchange of information, including hearing the points of view of the Netherlands and how it would take positons during COP24, but also how it would be supporting climate actions on the ground.

The meeting was short and productive. Representatives from the Global South shared their critical issues and challenges they face in their countries. Myself, I was able to share the experiences of PRC's work (including the work with Both ENDS in GAGGA), taking into account the specific challenges in Nepal as a mountainous country. I stressed that it is of crucial importance to work with local civil society groups and communities – especially women's groups - to make sure climate finance reaches the local level."

Minister Kaag: "Looking for adaptation champions"

"As a response to my issues, the Minister argued that capacity building was very important, including for CSOs. She was concerned about the shrinking space for civil society and said this should be protected. The Minister stated that leadership should come from all, including civil society. Furthermore, Kaag spoke about the New Dutch Climate Fund that would prioritize 65% of the funds for adaptation and highlighted the fact that incentivizing adaptation action was important.

Kaag told Raju and the other Southern leaders that gender equality and women empowerment are key priorities to her. Besides that, the Minister explained that livelihoods and adaptation are also critically important, and that she is looking for champions in adaptation.

Gender is a critical aspect of climate action

"As gender is critical but somehow controversial in the Green Climate Fund (GCF), I asked the Minister if the Netherlands would do anything in particular to make sure the GCF Gender Policy would get approved. My impression is that the Minister seems to be serious about climate action, in particular adaptation actions in developing countries related to women empowerment and livelihoods and seems to support CSOs and ensure their space is protected."

Lastly, Raju was able to advocate for a strong Paris rulebook and asked the Netherlands to do all in its powers to ensure the successful implementation of the Paris Agreement. He also addressed that the Dutch focus on mobilizing private sector finance has its limitations and that local private sector should not be forgotten.

About Raju Pandit Chettri

Raju works together with Both ENDS in a GAGGA-supported project on grassroots- and gender-responsive climate finance. Furthermore, he is engaging in the international civil society group working on the Green Climate Fund and one of the co-writers of our joint publication 'Local Actors Ready to Act'. He has been an advisor to the Nepali and Least Developed Countries (LDC)-constituencies in several COPs and other platforms, and contributed to a webinar by WEDO and Both ENDS on enhanced direct access to climate finance.


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