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The European Investment Bank (EIB) is launching a Roadshow on Climate Finance in the Caribbean. The second roadshow event took place in Santo Domingo on 18-19 February.

 This high profile conference was opened with an official welcome by the Honourable Ignacio Méndez Fernández, Vice-minister for the promotion of SMEs in the Ministry of Industry and Commerce (MICM) and his Excellency Gianluca Grippa, Ambassador of the European Union to the Dominican Republic. EIB Regional representative in the Caribbean, Yves Ferreira outlined how the bank is helping to support sustainable private sector growth in the region.

The conference focused on “Climate Finance: Challenges and Opportunities for the Caribbean Financial Sector” is designed to foster knowledge transfer around trends and innovation that affect the financial industry, facilitate the exchange of strategic experiences and encourage collaboration between regional stakeholders, experts and EIB Representatives.

The conference attracted over 75 attendees, representing both the beneficiaries of the EIB's TA Program (i.e. ADEMI, ADOPEM, BANFONDESA, FDD, FONDESA, FUNDAPEC), as well as institutions linked to Redomif and Abancord and different actors of the Dominican financial system.

More than 70 attendees participated in this event, representing both the beneficiaries of the EIB's TA Program (i.e. ADEMI, ADOPEM, BANFONDESA, FDD, FONDESA, FUNDAPEC), as well as institutions linked to Redomif and Abancord and different actors of the Dominican financial system.

The conference hosted a number of different sessions delivered by international and regional experts. The first day focused on “Demystifying Climate Change for Financial Institutions” with workshops on Greening of Financial Institutions and understanding the evolving regulatory landscape among others. On the second day, attendees had the opportunity to learn new ways to ‘Mainstream’ Climate Finance in their operations.  These covered pathways to adopting innovative Climate Adaptation tools as well as Digital Technologies but also exposed the role that Financial Institutions can have in empowering MSMEs to become “Climate Smart”.

This was the second event of the EIB Roadshow, which kicked off with another one the week before in Kingston, Jamaica on 12-13 February. Both had similar structure and content, with the one in Jamaica tailored for the English-speaking partner institutions of the EIB in the region.

These conferences comes in the midst of increasing environmental changes in the region, including rising sea levels, increased hurricane frequency and force, longer dry seasons and shorter wet seasons, all of which are expected to have many detrimental environmental, social and economic effects in Caribbean countries. These climate challenges, coupled with the proximity of population centres to the coast, limited natural resources and economies open to external shocks further increase the vulnerability of the Caribbean states. The EIB Technical Assistance Programme, implemented by the Frankfurt School of Finance & Management, addresses some of those challenges by aiming to build up the resilience of the Caribbean Financial Sector through knowledge development at Regional Conferences (e.g. EIB Caribbean Roadshow), but also through direct intervention with Partner Financial Institutions as well as their end-beneficiaries. The latter include activities such as the development of green loan products aimed at helping MSMEs finance energy-efficiency and renewable energy solutions, strengthening the risk management frameworks of banks so they are better able to handle the adverse effects of climate change amongst other risks, amongst many others.