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Pressespiegel, Politik

05. November 2021

South Africa Establishes a Historic International Partnership to Support a Just Transition

President Cyril Ramaphosa on Tuesday, 2 November 2021, joined other leaders in announcing a historic partnership with the governments of France, Germany, the United Kingdom and the United States, as well as the European Union, to support a just transition to a low-carbon economy and a climate-resilient society in South Africa.

In preparation for COP26, South Africa submitted a revised Nationally Determined Contribution (NDC) to reduce domestic carbon emissions to within a target range for emissions of between 420 CO2-eq and 350 CO2-eq by 2030. This revised target is compatible with the ambitious goals of the Paris Agreement and represents South Africa’s best effort to confront climate change, which will have a devastating impact on sub-Saharan Africa, without large-scale mitigation and adaptation efforts.

Through the Political Declaration issued to establish this partnership, partner countries will mobilise an initial US$8.5 billion (R131 billion) over the next three to five years through a range of instruments, including grants and concessional finance, to support the implementation of our revised NDC through a just transition to a low-carbon and climate-resilient economy.

The highly concessional finance that will be mobilised through this partnership will accelerate investment in renewable energy and the development of new sectors such as electric vehicles and green hydrogen. This will provide a significant boost to investment and growth while ensuring Eskom can access resources to finance repurposing of coal-fired power stations due for decommissioning over the next 15 years.

Welcoming this partnership, President Ramaphosa said: “Climate change is an existential challenge that confronts us all and South Africa is committed to playing its part in reducing global emissions. The partnership that we have established today is a watershed moment not only for our own just transition, but for the world as a whole. It is proof that we can take ambitious climate action while increasing our energy security, creating jobs and harnessing new opportunities for investment, with support from developed economies.”

Bold and ambitious actions are required from all countries to confront climate change and South Africa has consistently argued that developed economies must support a just transition in developing economies. The Political Declaration represents a first-of-its kind partnership to turn these commitments into reality and a model for similar forms of collaboration globally.

At the heart of this partnership is the importance of a just transition, which includes support for workers and communities affected by the transition away from coal and enables the creation of quality green jobs. For the transition to be just, decarbonisation must be implemented in a manner that promotes and sustains employment, livelihoods and economic inclusion for historically marginalised communities and sectors of our society.  A joint taskforce will be established to take forward the partnership over the coming months.

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Photo credit: Presidency

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