Nine African countries commit to protect Congo Basin with Blue Fund
Ministers from nine African nations (Morocco, Angola, Burundi, Central African Republic, Chad, Democratic Republic of Congo, Gabon, the Republic of the Congo and Rwanda) have today gathered in Oyo at the invitation of the President of the Republic of the Congo to sign a Memorandum of Understanding on the creation of the Congo Basin Blue Fund.
An initiative originally introduced at COP 22 by the Republic of the Congo in partnership with the Brazzaville Foundation, the Memorandum commits to establish the Congo Basin Blue Fund as a means to help shift the focus of Congo Basin economies from the exploitation of forests to a new form of sustainable development based on renewable water resources of the Congo and its tributaries.
The Congo Basin is one of the world's most important ecological systems and its forests are second only to the Amazon Basin as a global carbon sink. Preserving its forests plays a crucial role in reducing global warming. Further, the countries and peoples of the Congo Basin have the right to economic development and improved standards of living.
The Congo Basin Blue Fund will finance projects in sectors including; river transport, dredging and infrastructure, renewable energy, irrigation, fishing and eco-tourism. All offer an alternative to further deforestation.
Cécilia Attias, member of the Brazzaville Foundation commented, "Today's memorandum marks a huge step forward in delivering economic and environmental sustainability to the Congo Basin and surrounding communities. We are delighted by the support of these nine nations who have united in peaceful cooperation on this vital mission."
The Congo Basin Blue Fund will be seeking financial support from the main climate change financial instruments as well as other international institutions and donors and the private sector.
The Brazzaville Foundation is an independent, non-profit organisation. It is named after the Brazzaville Agreement signed in the Congolese capital in December 1988. It has two principal objectives: to develop sustainable development projects that bring countries and peoples together; and to facilitate dialogue between conflicting parties with informal diplomacy.
The Foundation is proud to have originated the idea of a Congo Basin Blue Fund in partnership with the Strategic Foresight Group.