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AfDB Launches Green Growth Seminar Series


On 13 March 2012 the African Development Bank (AfDB) launched a series of seminars to help Bank staff fully understand green growth and help define the Bank’s operational strategy in this area. The theme of the seminar was “Making green growth work for Africa - early lessons,” and it was presented by Dr Jens Riese, who oversees public sector work on green growth at the management consulting firm, McKinsey.

Speaking on green economy transformation, Dr Riese shared recent research findings, approaches, tools and their applicability in the African context. He drew concrete examples from McKinsey's work with the governments of Ethiopia and Mali, highlighting some of the challenges African countries could face as they green their economies and the ways development agencies could help, including financing preparatory studies.  

Reacting to questions from some of the more than 40 participants from the Bank’s operations departments, Mr. Aly Abou-Sabaa, chairman of the Bank’s Climate Change Coordinating Committee (CCCC), said that “mainstreaming green growth in AfDB’s operations would require undertaking appropriate value analysis to ensure that sustainable growth is being achieved in the right way,” noting that this did not necessarily mean “achieving zero carbon emission economies in Africa.”

Mrs Hela Cheikhrouhou, director of the Bank’s Energy Environment and Climate Change Department, also clarified a number of points raised by participants, particularly in the area of conflicting sectoral objectives in order to support green economy transformation in African countries at different levels of development.

In parallel to the green growth seminar series, the CCCC also held a retreat on 2 April 2012 for senior management to begin defining the details of the Bank’s approach to green growth.

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