Unveiling Of 4D Digital Green Industrial Corridor & Launch Of The African Union Transition Fuels Oversight & Regulatory Management Accelerator On 09/11/2022
VIRTUAL ADDRESS DELIVERED BY HIS EXCELLENCY, PROF. YEMI OSINBAJO, SAN, GCON, VICE PRESIDENT OF THE FEDERAL REPUBLIC OF NIGERIA AT THE UNVEILING OF THE 4D DIGITAL GREEN INDUSTRIAL CORRIDOR & LAUNCH OF THE AFRICAN UNION TRANSITION FUELS OVERSIGHT & REGULATORY MANAGEMENT ACCELERATOR (TRANSFORMA), AT COP27 ON THE 9TH OF NOVEMBER, 2022
Excellencies, distinguished guests, ladies and gentlemen, it is my pleasure to be a part of this event which clearly indicates tangible progress towards the implementation of key initiatives like the Green Recovery Action Plan for Africa, the African Continental Free Trade Area (AfCFTA) and by extension, the attainment of Africa’s Agenda 2063.
Tackling the combined challenges of COVID-19 recovery, climate change and overall sustainable development requires significant resources that can only be delivered through strong partnerships and coordination. For instance, the Climate Policy Initiative estimates that Africa needs about $2.8 trillion between 2020 and 2030 to implement our Nationally Determined Contributions (NDCs) under the Paris Agreement. This translates to about $277 billion per annum but annual climate finance flows in Africa stand at only $29.5 billion.
Innovations like the 4D Digital Green Corridor and Transforma, by creating ready platforms for Pan-African collaboration, are critical to finance and more broadly, resource mobilization on the continent. And it is exciting to see that this comes as other initiatives such as the African Carbon Market initiative is being announced.
Excellencies, ladies and gentlemen our case as a continent, particularly with respect to the just energy transition is cogent and irrefutable. We cannot accept a global energy transition that leaves millions of our people in the dark, exposed to harmful pollutants due to unclean cooking, or poor and unemployed because of limited industrial activity.
Africa deserves the policy flexibility and support to leverage natural gas for the speedy resolution of our energy needs. Countries including the U.S, China, and Japan, large parts of Asia and the EU include gas as a major pillar of their multi-decadal decarbonization strategies. Similarly, natural gas has a key role to play in Africa as a transition fuel to facilitate the delivery of electricity access and clean cooking solutions, the scaleup and integration of renewable energy into the energy mix and the switch from dirtier fuels like diesel and petrol.
With developments like the Kigali Communiqué which came out of the Sustainable Energy for All Forum in May and the Common Position on Energy Access and Just Transition adopted by the African Union Executive Council, it is clear that our joint advocacy on principles for a just transition is getting stronger, our home-grown solutions must do the same.
Across the continent, many of our challenges and priorities are shared. African governments are tasked with eradicating poverty, providing opportunities for our expanding populations, delivering robust healthcare solutions and unlocking prosperity for future generations, to name a few.
The beneficial role of Pan-African cooperation on these issues has been established. Reports from the World Bank estimate that the AfCFTA could raise income on the continent by over $450 billion by 2035 and lift 50 million people out of extreme poverty. Importantly, the continent could see foreign direct investment increase by between 111 percent and 159 percent under the AfCFTA.
Our priority must therefore be the maximization of this potential which is what the 4D Digital Green Industrial Corridor and Transforma propose to do.
The initial focus of Transforma on Natural Gas Liquids (NGLs) is also fitting given their multisectoral relevance. Natural Gas Liquids (NGLs) serve as clean cooking solutions in the form of LPG, inputs to industrial processes like petrochemicals and plastics production, and cleaner transportation fuels.
Transforma’s mandate of supply chain transformation can lead to an upscaling of the NGL value-chain, and this promises massive benefits for the continent. The African Development Bank notes that reducing supply chain barriers could increase global GDP up to six times more than removing all import tariffs. This indicates that Transforma’s goals are highly important.
Here in Nigeria, we are well-aligned with the goals of the Green Recovery Action Plan, and we see clear synergies with the mandate of Transforma. For example, in 2020, as part of our Economic Sustainability Plan to drive post-COVID recovery and economic growth, our government unveiled the National LPG Expansion Implementation Programme realizing the potential of LPG and other NGLs to address energy access, climate and industrial bottlenecks. It has been estimated that economic activities stimulated by the domestic utilization of Nigeria’s recoverable gas reserves could support 6.5 million full-time equivalent jobs and produce $18.3 billion in gross value add annually, with over $5 billion of this amount directly from capturing the economic value of NGLs.
Consequently, Transforma is indeed a welcome development, and we recognize the value that the transcontinental policy and implementation vehicle offers in mobilizing larger investments, improving shared learning and producing larger economies of scale for individual nations like Nigeria and also for the entire continent.
The Federal Government of Nigeria is committed to the necessary policy and regulatory reforms that will produce greater prosperity for our people and indeed for all Africans. We look forward to receiving more details on the Transforma mechanism and outlining the nature of our support for its execution.
Thank you for your kind attention.