Indian companies should invest in ‘climate vulnerable’ countries, says former Maldives President

Climate Vulnerable Forum Secretary-General says India on track on meeting Paris Agreement commitments

Updated - December 04, 2023 10:42 pm IST

Published - December 04, 2023 09:56 pm IST - DUBAI

Climate Vulnerable Forum Secretary-General and former Maldives President Mohamed Nasheed.

Climate Vulnerable Forum Secretary-General and former Maldives President Mohamed Nasheed.

More Indian companies ought to be investing in clean energy projects in Maldives and other ‘climate vulnerable’ countries instead of putting money in “iron and steel” as this would be a “good investment”, former Maldives President Mohamed Nasheed told The Hindu on Monday.

Currently, the Secretary-General, Climate Vulnerable Forum (CVF) – a grouping of 58 countries that are particularly vulnerable to natural disasters from climate change – Mr. Nasheed said India’s commitment to installing 500 GW of electricity from non-fossil fuel sources and reducing emissions by 45% suggested that “it was on track” as far meeting its commitments to the Paris Agreement was concerned. The 2015 agreement, to which India is a signatory, seeks to cap global average temperature rise below 2°C and “as far as possible” below 1.5°C. “More than taking on emission cuts, India should be investing more in renewable energy projects in climate-vulnerable countries,” said Mr. Nasheed.

The CVF Secretary-General said that he had seen interest from “several Indian investors” in investing in renewable energy projects, particularly solar and wind projects, in countries that are part of the grouping. He, however, refused to disclose any names.

Development banks and richer developed countries could play an important role in “de-risking investments”, he said while stressing that the vulnerable countries were not really asking for grants but real investments in their economies.

Though initially a group of 20 countries, the CVF has expanded to 58 countries. They include Asian nations such as Maldives, Sri Lanka, Bhutan, Pakistan and Nepal. There are 27 countries from Africa and West Asia; 11 from Latin America and the Caribbean and 20 from the Asia-Pacific.

‘Leader of Global South’

“India has always been a leader of the Global South and this goes back to the time of Mahatma Gandhi and Pandit Jawaharlal Nehru. I commend Prime Minister Narendra Modi for the ideas that he set forth at last week,” said Mr. Nasheed.

Mr. Modi in his address at COP-28 on Friday outlined the ‘Green Credit Initiative’, which would create a system that incentivises greener lifestyle choices by people.

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