Yellen, US Treasury, to push development banks to step up climate finance efforts


By David Lawder

VENICE (Reuters) – US Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen on Sunday said she would push major multilateral development banks to “increase their climate ambition” and speed up deadlines to support the Paris Agreement on reducing emissions. carbon emissions.

Yellen told a press conference that development lenders, including the World Bank, must redouble their efforts to encourage more climate-friendly private sector investments.

“I plan to convene the heads of the MDBs shortly to express our expectations that the MDBs align their portfolios with the Paris Agreement and net zero goals as quickly as possible,” Yellen said in remarks to a G20 forum on the climate.

“We also expect them to take action to mobilize private capital more effectively so that developing countries can increasingly benefit from private sector commitments to support sustainable and climate-aligned investments,” he said. Yellen said.

Yellen wields significant influence over development lenders as the Treasury manages substantial US holdings in institutions.

The United States is the dominant shareholder in the World Bank and the Inter-American Development Bank, while it is among the largest in the Asian Development Bank and the African Development Bank. It is not a member of the Chinese-led Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank.

Yellen said multilateral development banks have the political expertise, relationships and financial tools to make a substantial contribution to achieving climate goals.

“As primary sources of public finance, MDBs must maximize the catalytic impact of their support to countries seeking to address climate change and exploit the economic opportunities inherent in the transition to a low carbon economy. “

Yellen also said she was working through the Financial Stability Oversight Council, a US multi-regulatory body she chairs, to assess the impact of climate-related risks on the financial system.

The Treasury is also seeking to improve disclosure of climate risks to investors, and Yellen said she is working closely with national regulators and international partners to promote consistent cross-border approaches to these disclosure rules.

(Reporting by David Lawder; Editing by Hugh Lawson)

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