AfDB pledges new $1b climate financing for youths’ businesses
President of African Development Bank (AfDB), Dr. Akinwumi Adesina, has announced a new $1 billion fund to accelerate climate financing for Africa’s youth businesses.
The additional financing is expected to boost YouthAdapt, a joint initiative between the bank and the Global Centre on Adaptation.
The bank invites young entrepreneurs and micro, small, and medium enterprises in Africa to submit innovative solutions and business ideas that have potential to drive climate change adaptation and resilience across the continent.
Adesina made the announcement during a high-level intergenerational dialogue entitled: ‘Africa Driving Climate Adaptation Solutions and Jobs’, held at the Wangari Maathai Institute of Peace and Environment, on the outskirts of Nairobi.
Announcing the funding, Adesina said African youths didn’t want “little things being doled out to them. We have no option but to invest in our youths.”
Over the past two years, YouthAdapt has provided more than $1.5 million to 33 young entrepreneurs across 19 African countries. Some have gone on to raise their profits by 200 per cent.
He said: “Africa’s youth are the present. It is their views and perspectives that are going to change the continent. Failing to invest in the youth will hurt Africa. Failure is not an option.”
In his remarks, 8th Secretary General of the UN, Ban Ki Moon, told youths that, as global citizens, they should not be held back by national boundaries, even as he urged them to hold their leaders accountable for the promises they make. “Challenge your leaders today. Use your voting power to ensure climate adaptation and finance are a priority,” Ban said.
Get the latest news delivered straight to your inbox every day of the week. Stay informed with the Guardian’s leading coverage of Nigerian and world news, business, technology and sports.