Presidency Spokesperson Vincent Magwenya says South Africa is determined to make sure that the energy issue is addressed adequately.
Addressing the media in Pretoria on Sunday, Mangwenya says as the Just Energy Transition investment plan begins to take off, the country will need R1.5 trillion in the next 5 years.
The office of the President updates the nation on the President’s program for the week. President Cyril Ramaphosa is expected to jet off to Bali, Indonesia, for the G20 Summit on Tuesday.
But the energy crisis that continues to have ripple effects on the country’s economy, is getting urgent attention.
He says since the UN Climate Change summit last year, R10.7 billion has been received in low-interest loans from Germany and France so far.
“France, Germany the UK, the US and the European Union pledged around R 40 billion Rand to support our Just Transition. An initial amount of R 10.7 billion has been received in low-interest loans from Germany and France. While South Africa welcomes low interests or conventional loans, a substantial portion of these loans needs to be in the form of grants,” he explains.
AU’s response at COP27
Meanwhile, Ministers from various African countries are meeting on Sunday in Sharm El Sheikh, Egypt. The aim of the session is to ensure that continent speaks with one voice in response to issues raised at the COP27 climate summit.
AU commissioner Estherine Fotabong says the issue of Just Energy Transition is critical.
“In the context of Just Transition, we of course need to balance the change of getting to the green economy and zero carbon economy and that of economic interest of the African continent and the African people. It is therefore important that as we finalise this last week of negotiations we give our negotiations to the guidance of the ministers the courage to change the things that we have to change in terms of contributing to Just Transition.”
Minister of Green Economy and Climate Change in Zambia, Collins Nzovu says they expect to make progress on the matter.
“The name that we will meet at the Congress the fact that it is on the table is progress in itself. We will put more pressure to make sure that we make progress on loss and damage. I don’t believe it will be just a subject on the agenda.”
UN representative on Environment in Africa, Inger Anderson, has called on the G20 countries to make resources and funds available. This comes as the G20 leaders are expected to meet in Bali Indonesia this week.
Anderson says the funds are needed to address the challenges of loss and damages in relation to climate change caused by industrialisation.
“The issue of longtime finance is clearly the most critical issue. One of the critical issues on the agenda and indeed the progress report on the climate financing delivery plan has been discussed. In this regards the Secretary General has highlighted the importance of being aware of what the commodity crisis is doing right now to African economies.”
-Additional reporting by Sophie Mokoena.