Sharing experiences and updating the state of the actions developed by the Central American countries in terms of fiscal and environmental sustainability was the main objective of the regional seminar on instruments of green fiscal policy, climate change and environmental sustainability, held on November 7 and 8 in San José, Costa Rica.
The event was organized by the Economic Commission for Latin America and the Caribbean (ECLAC), within the framework of the EUROCLIMA+ Programme, with the Council of Ministers of Finance of Central America, Panama and the Dominican Republic (COSEFIN), and the Ministry of Finance of Costa Rica.
Representatives from governments of Guatemala, El Salvador, Honduras, Nicaragua, Costa Rica, Panama and the Dominican Republic participated in the seminar.
The meeting was part of the actions developed by COSEFIN, a sectoral body of the Central American Integration System (SICA), and ECLAC within the EUROCLIMA+ Programme, which seeks to strengthen capacities of design of public investment projects and formulation of green fiscal instruments to address climate change and to contribute to Sustainable Development Goals in the Central American region.
Pelayo Castro, Ambassador of the Delegation of the European Union to Costa Rica, said that "it is possible to decouple economic growth and emissions through transformations such as the change of economic paradigm," emphasizing that "to face climate change requires the participation of governments, the private sector and civil society, besides accelerating the action".
Rodolfo Cordero Vargas, Vice Minister of Finance of Costa Rica, focused on climate change consequences, stating that "it will affect public finances and have impacts on infrastructure, health and other sectors."
COSEFIN’s Executive Secretary, Martín Portillo, commented that "Finance budgets of SICA countries are being affected by the impacts of climate change."
"Using green fiscal policy instruments is not only recommended due to its implications on the fight against climate change, it is also a tool to boost the economy, reduce poverty and inequalities, and to promote a change towards sustainable development" added Jimy Ferrer, Economic Affairs Officer of the Sustainable Development and Human Settlements Division of ECLAC.
EUROCLIMA+ is a programme funded by the European Union to promote environmentally sustainable and climate-resilient development in 18 Latin American countries, particularly for the benefit of the most vulnerable populations. The Programme is implemented through the synergistic work of seven agencies: Spanish Agency for International Development Cooperation (AECID), French Development Agency (AFD), Economic Commission for Latin America and the Caribbean (ECLAC), Expertise France (EF), International and Ibero-American Foundation for Administration and Public Policies (FIIAPP), German Society for International Cooperation (GIZ) and UN Environment.