By Jude Njoku
The Federal Government of Nigeria will pursue a low carbon development strategy to achieve Vision 2020 targets. This hint was dropped by the Minister of Environment, Mr John Odey in a message to the National Workshop on Developing a Low Carbon Industrial Strategy for Nigeria. The Minister stated Nigeria’s commitment to develop a low carbon industrial strategy that creates growth, employment and reduce emission of greenhouse gases.
The workshop organised by the Federal Ministry of Environment, Federal Ministry of Commerce and Industry, Global Climate Network and ICEED, stakeholders agreed that energy, cement and textile sectors should be Nigeria’s priority focus in stimulating low carbon growth. They noted that key barriers such as financing the cost of technology conversion, weak energy and transport infrastructure, as well as policy inconsistency frustrate efforts to steer these vital sectors towards a low carbon pathway.
The Director of ICEED, Mr Ewah Eleri said that “the low carbon industrial strategy will articulate government and private sector actions that lead to rapid industrialization through low carbon emission technologies”. This was echoed by Mr Muyi Kazim, Head of the Carbon Desk, Standard Bank. According to him, “Nigeria requires a clear and stable policy framework that sends the right signal to the investment community. Enhancing the pipeline of finance to low carbon industries will therefore depend on the stability of this policy framework”, he stressed.
UNIDO Representative in Nigeria, Dr Patrick Kormawa presented international experiences in low carbon industrial development in countries like Brazil, China and India. According to him, “UNIDO Nigeria is willing and able to support the Federal Government in developing clear strategies for expanding low carbon industrialisation”. Similarly, the World Bank announced plans to support low carbon growth and climate_reliant projects in Nigeria. The Bank’s representative, Ms Shobha Shetty, said that studies are already underway to map out the best approaches for achieving this.
Stakeholders agreed to set up a multi_stakeholder committee to develop a low carbon industrialisation blue_print for the country. On its part, the representative of the Minister of Environment, Dr Samuel Adejunwo pledged to continue this dialogue with industry leaders in identifying key incentives for expanding investments in low carbon technologies.