The African Development Bank (AfDB), in partnership with the World Bank, the United Nations and the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD), prepared a policy toolkit on inclusive green growth for the G20 Leaders’ Summit, held in Los Cabos, Mexico, in June, at the request of the G20 Development Working Group (DWG). Green Growth is one of the three priorities under the Mexican Presidency.
The toolkit has been the product of close collaboration among the four international organizations, with the AfDB, under the leadership of its Energy, Environment and Climate Change Department (ONEC), playing an active role in shaping the document and ensuring that the perspectives of low income countries, particularly those in Africa, are adequately reflected. Led by an ONEC team, the Bank’s contributions were built on the inputs of the multi-disciplinary Green Growth team set up early 2012 and co-chaired by ONEC and the Bank’s Climate Change Coordination Committee. The first draft report presented at the Leader’s Summit served as a starting point in a broad and emerging policy arena. The green growth policy toolkit is expected to be a living document to be periodically updated as new tools and instruments are developed. In addition, continued consultation on these tools amongst the various institutions (international organizations, think tanks, bilateral donors) that support inclusive green growth could lead to common approaches and practices and promote a better understanding of how different tools complement each other.
Within the G20 process, the DWG has fully recognized that inclusive green growth is a key element of long term sustainable development. In addition, the DWG has emphasized that embarking on inclusive green growth must not become a prescriptive conditionality for developing countries and G20 countries alike to access international assistance and resources. Instead, the international community must come together to support developing countries seeking to put in place country-driven and nationally-appropriate tools that foster economic growth which is both environmentally sustainable and socially inclusive. Inclusive green growth will not happen on its own: deliberate policy and investment decisions need to be taken at all levels, local to global, to ensure that economic growth is in fact “green” and “inclusive”.