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How do we find a new development path that tackles inequality and empowers people so that people and the planet can prosper together? This is the question that UNDP Administrator Achim Steiner and EIB President Hoyer addressed today during a dialogue around the key findings of UNDP Human Development Report 2020.

UNDP Administrator Steiner underlined that society and the planet are two sides of the same coin, and that International Financial Institutions, in particular the EIB should help detect the next frontiers and invest in them to leverage the finance needed to accelerate the transition to low carbon and inclusive economy, creating incentives and acting as accelerators particularly in areas like biodiversity, nature and what Achim Steiner referred to as an “ecological infrastructure” which can help sustain communities.

Echoing Mr Steiner, EIB President Hoyer stressed the EU Bank’s commitment to invest in well‐targeted projects and initiatives that can assist the green and resilient transition while contributing to human development. He reminded the online audience that the EIB, through its new Climate Bank Roadmap, will increase its investment in socially responsive climate actions that can strengthen climate and environmental outcomes, notably for the most vulnerable groups of society adversely affected by a structural shift away from carbon intensive activities. He remarked that the EIB was also “learning”, as reflected in its Climate Bank Roadmap about the inextricable links between climate action, development  and the protection of nature and building resilience.

The discussion was opened by Maria Shaw-Barragan, Director of the EIB Global Partners Department, who acknowledged the long-standing cooperation between the EIB and UNDP, working together to promote resilience and support sustainable and inclusive economies around the world. She underlined  that the EIB and more broadly all development banks must be part of the incentives schemes proposed by the UNDP Human Development Report to ultimately achieve the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).  

The dialogue was followed by an expert discussion moderated by the EIB’s Principal Media Advisor, Shirin Wheeler with Pedro Conceição, UNDP Director of the Human Development Report Office, Eva Mayerhofer, EIB Lead Environmental & Biodiversity Specialist, and Moa Westman, EIB Gender Specialist. The role of finance for a green, inclusive and sustainable transition was explored as well as the importance of working with in innovative partnerships like the 2X Challenge, using funds and equity and better consulting with indigenous communities to ensure that projects don’t support one SDG at the expense of another.

Finally, Mirjana Spoljaric Egger, UNDP Assistant Administrator and Director of Regional Bureau for Europe and the Commonwealth of Independent States, concluded the conversion by calling for more collaboration between all big development leaders such as the UNDP and the EIB, who need to act as pioneers and accelerators of transformation, notably through the development of climate friendly investment.